Images from Ethiopia
The Trip that Planted the Seeds...
Click here to go directly to the BEADS
Visit the Mail Page for the HOPE Bracelet Project
The Bead Girls
at DIA on the way to Ethiopia...
Devon King Billings,
Cindy Brown and Tammy Cunningham
each wearing 2 necklaces of Bali Silver.
We'll cut them up and use the beads in
the HOPE Bracelets!
There were also LOTS of non-beaders in our group:
Film-makers, high school and college students with their advisors, nurses with their coordinator, representatives of Share Our Strength, Save the Children and Project Cure.....even a soccer coach!
Noel & Tammy really know how to build a great TEAM!
Interviews were started right at the airport! HDTV has
produced 2 documentaries about Project Mercy and how
it has been bringing new life and hope to this beautiful, but poor land.
Watch for "The Green Famine" on your PBS station!
Where IS Yetebon????
Click the map to see an enlarged version.
On our first night in Ethiopia we had a wonderful dinner at the Sheraton Hotel with Marta and Deme, the founders of Project Mercy. Here, Marta is briefing the nurses in our group about what to expect.
We used 3 Land Rovers and a small bus (WITH drivers...it is
SCARY to drive in Ethiopia!) to get around!
Our drivers were wonderful!!
Everything looks so green and lush!
It's hard to believe that Ethiopia is enduring a "green famine". Much of the rain has come too late and the corn will have no kernels on the ears.
Other crops are similarly affected and starvation for about 40% of the people in this part of the world would be looming if not for the efforts of many agencies, both governmental and privately funded (like Project Mercy).
This is the village of Butajera....
the nearest place we could find on the map of Ethiopia to Project Mercy
It's Market Day!
All the students turned out to welcome us to Project Mercy....WOW.....
are a few
of the older
See a short MOVIE
and hear them
Marta (on the right)
was the most wonderful hostess anyone could ever hope for!
Our food was grown in the compound's organic gardens and the meat came from animals raised there, as well.
Water comes from a spring high in the mountains above...the west wall of the Rift Valley.
Here Marta visits with Chuck and Noel, the "kingpins" of our happy group!
After our lunch Deme took us on a tour of the Project Mercy Community.
Here he shows us the different types
of grain and flour in storage.
We also learned about the two different types of infant formulas used in the Therapeutic Feeding Center. When we visited there were over 60 adults with infants in serious stages of malnutrition (less than 70% of their expected weight for their height/age) at the center. The nurses from Regis that were part of our group spent LOTS of time every day at the center. They also visited feeding centers in other parts of Ethiopia.
SEE ALL THE PIX OF THE FEEDING CENTER
We had the wonderful opportunity of watching the women at work...spinning cotton, weaving baskets and doing embroidery. This program enriches women and families by teaching them a marketable trade.
The men of the community have a similar program with woodworking, iron working, masonry and all sorts of construction trades.
The men are also learning animal husbandry. Since the average Ethiopian cow produces only about 1 liter of milk a day, Project Mercy is working to improve production by crossing them with other breeds. Higher milk producing heifers will be sold throughout the area when enough "good calves" have been born. Here are just a few of the new "babes".......
Of course, many of us spent several days in "the BEAD SHOP" (the living room of Devon & Cindy's apartment) creating bracelets for the HOPE Bracelet Project!
We borrowed some containers from the hospital to keep things semi-organized and we had a great time!
Everyone in our group pitched in and we made bracelets until we ran out of clasps!
ALL the Bracelet PICTURES
See a List of all the Amazing DONORS
Each bracelet was designed by lining up beads between 2 drinking straws placed under the tablecloth. Then the beads were strung onto a length of Soft Flex wire and tested for length. The toggle clasp was added last using sterling crimp beads.
Click the picture of Jen at right to see the process in action.....
Many thanks to Deme, Marta, Noel
as well as my fellow travelers
for making this trip one of the most
memorable and emotional times
of my life.
May this trip sow many seeds that
grow and prosper among the beautiful people of Ethiopia
and strengthen the resolve of everyone
to find a way to make the world a better place.
If these pictures have moved
you..........Share YOUR Strength
however, wherever and at every opportunity
What's YOUR piece of the puzzle?
Each of the 500 HOPE
Bracelets made in 2003 features a sterling silver charm
The 2004 bracelets
will feature an exclusive Project Mercy toggle clasp
Visits since July 2, 2003