Zemene’s School is Completed!


 The construction of the four classroom school in Belessa, Ethiopia is completed!  It was furnished with school desks and blackboards and handed over to the local community education office this week.  Despite lack of water, civil strife, and great logistical issues, the local American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) succeeded in the endeavor to build this school.

The village of Belessa was brought to the attention of Pathways through the story of then 10-year-old Zemene Tiget, who received life-saving surgery from Dr. Rick Hodes. Zemene’s precocious nature, passion for life in the face of overwhelming adversity, and the desire to give back to her community through the dream of a “real school” for her village resonated deeply with Pathways and the JDC, making it a perfect collaborative project.  The plaque in the school commemorating this achievement will say “In honor of Zemene, a brave young woman and Dr. Rick Hodes who saved her. Funded by the generous support of Pathways to Children; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA. ”

After seeing the post about the completion of the school on Facebook, Zemene responded, “I can’t describe the feeling I felt when I saw this in words. I never thought my dream would become a reality in such short amount of time. You can’t imagine the pleasure it gives me to see my fellow villagers getting the opportunity to receive proper education in a well-maintained environment. Thank you, everyone!”

Zemene commented to Pathways: “I am so happy about the school.  When I saw the picture on Facebook, I was almost crying. I want to thank you for doing the school. The school looks amazing, I didn’t expect it will be like this. Thank you very much for everything!”  Zemene is finishing up high school in the U.S. She hopes to go to college but with no financial means is looking for scholarships. If anyone can help please contact Pathways to Children.

If you would like to contribute for a well that will be built on site, supplies for the school, or to Pathways in general, you can make  a contribution electronically on our website or send a check to Pathways to Children, 100 2nd Street SE #1201, Minneapolis, MN 55414.