Kechene is located in the northern tip of Addis Ababa. The village was composed of four kebeles, which have now been combined in to almost one. The main destination of Kechene is about 5-7 minutes drive from Piazza /which is the traditional center of Addis Ababa).
2. Population size and origin
The Kechene community is estimated to be over 50.000. This number includes only those who current reside in Kechene. However, quite many people live outside Kechene.
3. Culture and Associations
The Kechene community composes very hard working people who have preserved their ancient and religiously of high value cultural identity. The culture of the community has been transformed from generations to generations with quite a little improvement because of modern education.
In Kechene, one can find several traditions and human associations in which people participate for so many reasons. Needs for
welfare protection, socialization and teamwork are the most common reasons why people form associations in Kechene.
The most common form of associations in the community is: IDIR, which is a local welfare association, Tsiwa/Mahiber, which is a socialization event and have high religious value. Equib is another and is a traditional banking system.
4. Economic Activities
Most people in Kechene make their living through traditional weaving and clay pottery. Roughly speaking more than 60% of the
community earns their living in the above-mentioned activities.
Quite several section of the community also make their living through taxi driving and small scale business activities such as retailing and raw material supplying for weavers.
Currently, life has become ever difficult, due to the skyrocketing cost of life in the city. This has further been aggravated due to the deteriorating profitability of the traditional weaving and clay pottery industry because of Chinese products.
Kechene and its surrounding people have two schools to send their children for primary education. The first school in the community is the Kechene Debre Selam School. This school was constructed in 1978 by the financial and Labor contribution of the government and the people respectively. Before the construction of this school, the children of the community used to go long ways away to adjacent Villages for education.
In 1998, the Addis Berhan School was constructed raising the number of schools in the community to two. This school was also constructed by the concerted effort of the public, the government and the Ethiopian social rehabilitation fund respectively.
However, there are no high schools in the community and even the primary schools do not have well equipped libraries and reading room, which serves the community efficiently.
5.2 Housing and sanitation
In Kechene one of the acute problems is the shortage of housing and residential facilities. Inversely there is a continuously rising population size as a result of high birth rate and continuing migration from North Shewa. The situation beyond hastening the health status of the population is skyrocketing the price of some
goods and rent of private houses.
Poorly developed houses that are made from mud and wood are common resident houses. In addition, these houses usually do not house latrines and showering rooms. Additionally people perform any kind of activities including weaving and pottery in the same house they reside. These factors have seriously hastened the health status of the community.
5.3 Communication and Transport service
Here again Kechene appears poorly developed. The road
system which was constructed some 30 and 40 years before had never been repaired well since then. Consequently there exist an acute transport shortage specially in the morning and night as private taxis rarely dare highly impoverished roads of the city in general and that of Kechene in particular.
In terms of telecom service only the recent expansion by Ethiopian Telecommunication service widely benefited the
5.4 Health Service
A 2005 UN World Youth Report defines health as Health may be defined as a state of complete physical, mental and social wellbeing and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. For need of Health care and medication, the Kechene community used to go long ways away from the village for so many years in history. As a result several communicable and non-communicable diseases were highly prevalent, hastening good living and working environment, in which the community achieved neither economic prosperity nor happiness in life.
There are so many reasons for the poor health status of the community. The first reason is the poorly developed residential and housing facilities. These houses as described above have neither latrines nor showering rooms. Additionally, people conduct all their economic activities in the same very small house in which they permanently reside. The other reason for the poor health status of Kechene is the publics' weak economic condition which in no way allows providing balanced diet to their families. Additionally the low level of awareness of the community has made it difficult to keep their houses and village well cleaned.
According to a research conducted by African Medical Research Foundation (AMREF-Ethiopia), 16 % of the Kechene community lives with HIV/AIDS. (AMREF'S Annual Report, 2004). This number is the highest prevalence in the city. Until HIV/AIDS came along the hand-to-mouse existence was manageable. Now the most common situation is that widows who look after several children or worse, orphan-headed families are rising in number.
There is a good community sprit among the people in the fight against HIV/AIDS, and families take in orphans where they can, but now they are highly stretched, as they cannot anymore. Because of the HIV/AIDS, the children of the community have no childhood, and very little idea of play or fun.
The community in general has suffered quite a lot from the poor attention given by the government and other stakeholders to alleviate, the poor health situation. As a result, long ways away clinics and hospitals were the only option for medication. Nevertheless, nowadays there is a little improvement with the construction of the free Methodist Health center and one additional private clinic.
6. Statement of the Problem
Because youth are a relatively healthy segment of the population, their health needs have generally been overlooked, except for their reproductive health. When they do suffer poor health, it is often a result of the effects of accidents, injuries caused by armed conflict, violence, substance abuse, HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis. Extreme poverty and malnutrition make some youth vulnerable to disease. Accidents and injuries are major causes
of youth morbidity, mortality and disability.
Although early pregnancy has declined in many countries, it is still a major concern, especially because of the health risks for both mother and child and the impact on girls education and life prospects. Births to females below age 20 accounts for 17 per cent of all births in the least-developed countries, which equal 14 million births worldwide each year. One female in three in developing countries gives birth before age 20, and 55 per cent of all females in West Africa give
birth before age 20. According to the report of the UN Pregnancy is a leading cause of death for females aged 15 to 19, with complications of childbirth and unsafe abortion being the major factors.
Young people worldwide are reaching puberty at earlier ages and marrying later. Premarital sex is becoming more widespread. Despite a trend towards later marriage in much of the world, millions of girls are still expected to marry and begin childbearing in their teens, often before they are ready to do so. Data for the late 1990s show that among young women who were sexually
active by age 20, only 51 per cent in Africa and 45 per cent in Latin America and the Caribbean initiated sexual activity before marriage. By contrast, the corresponding proportion for males was 90 per cent in Africa and 95 per cent in Latin America and the Caribbean, and in many developed countries, most men and women initiate sexual activity before marriage. In both developed and developing countries,
Many who become sexually active at a young age do not know how to protect themselves during sexual activity. Young women are often unable to negotiate condom use with male partners and may fear violence if they try to do so. One third of new cases of curable sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) each year - more than
100 million - are among women and men below age 25. Having an untreated STD significantly increases the risk of HIV infection World Youth Report, 2005
The reproductive health needs of adolescents have been largely ignored. In many countries, there is a lack of information and services available to adolescents to help them understand their sexuality, including sexual and reproductive health, and to protect them from unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV/AIDS.
All young people should have access to basic health services in the interest of all and of society as a whole. It is the indispensable responsibility of each Government and all concerned stakeholders to mobilize the necessary awareness, resources and channels. These measures should be supported by a favorable international economic environment and by cooperation. Poor health is often caused by lack of information and lack of health services for youth, mostly in developing countries. The
resulting problems are, among others:
Sexually transmitted diseases, including infection with HIV; early pregnancies; lack of hygiene and sanitation, leading to infection, infestation and diarrhea; genetic and congenital diseases; psychological and mental diseases; narcotic and psychotropic drug abuse; misuse of alcohol and tobacco; unwarranted risk-taking and destructive activity, resulting in unintentional injuries; malnutrition; and poor spacing of births (World Youth Report, 2005)
UYCD believes that there should be Cooperation among all stakeholders in order to promote personal responsibility for a healthy lifestyle and provide the knowledge and skills necessary to adopt a healthy lifestyle, including teaching the social and health consequences of behavior that poses health risks. Promotion of health services, including sexual and reproductive health and development of relevant education Programmes in those fields are equally important to contain the spread of HIV/AIDS and other pandemics.
UYCD notes that Governments should develop accessible, available and affordable primary health care services of high quality, including sexual and reproductive health care, as well as education Programmes, including those related to sexually transmitted disease. Continued international cooperation and collective global efforts are necessary for the containment of HIV/AIDS and other STDs.
7. Goal of the Project: to contribute to the development of a risk free and responsible sexual behavior among young people in Gulele Sub city in general and Kechene in particular.
8. Objective of the
Project: to discuss, exchange ideas and share experiences with young people in Gulele Sub city in general and Kechene in particular about a risk free and responsible sexual behavior.
9. Components of the Project:
1. Community Conversation
2. Literature Program: Drama, Poem, Music, Film, and Talent Show.
3. Sport and Physical Exercise, Football, Running,
10. Expected Outcomes: Young people in Gulele Sub City in general and Kechene in particular will develop a risk free and responsible sexual behavior.
11. Beneficiaries of the Project: Young people in Gulele Sub City in general and Kechene
12. Project Management
To manage the project, an advisory community shall be organized composed of:
· BBC World Service Trust
· Young People
This committee as its name indicates advices the actual project
staffs and thus do not involve in the day-to-day activities. However, they provide general guidelines and frames of operations to the project manager. The project Coordinator is instrumental to facilitate communications and smooth operations of the project. The manager shall be responsible to the day-to-day activities and support staffs, mobilization resource and other functions of management.
Unite! For Your Community Development (UYCD) Office for
Research and Publications
P.O.Box 7660, Fax: +251 115 546 450
Mobile: +251 911 460 441
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
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