Livelihood development program in Hiwot Ethiopia context refers to interventions that enhance the readiness of young people to engage in sustainable livelihood activities and improve young peoples and adults’ access to market driven product and services that can enhance their economic success of their households.

Hiwot has three strategies for the livelihood programming

  1. Human capacity building: this activity includes provide different formal and informal training to improve their practical technical knowledge and skill. It includes vocation and long life skill activities.
  2. Building financial capital: this includes providing initial seed capital, encouraging saving and credit, providing financial aid for their long term training and or education, and link the with the micro finance institutions to get additional resources
  3. Building physical capital: this includes provision of different equipments to the practical space of work


Hiwot Ethiopia is working to change the lives of children and their parents through involving them in income generating activity by equipping them business development skill, organizing them in self help group and support seed capital. The IGA support aims to provide opportunities and meet the demand for income generating activities of vulnerable children and parents who face difficult living condition and economic hardships. Identification of vulnerable children and parents has been done by the respective wereda women children and youth affairs offices. Door-to-door visiting evaluation and meetings with the identified targets were undertaken by the program staff of Hiwot Ethiopia.

Hiwot Ethiopia with its partners has done the following in livelihood program:

  • Business skill development training provided to commercial sex workers (30) and startup capital delivered based on their action plan.
  • 111 households of vulnerable children and their parents are indentified and involved in baking injera, pottery, street coffee and tea sales, petty trade (vegetable and fruits), sheep fattening, tailoring, and weaving business.
  • 151 family head(women) whose children are engaged in khat plantation, cutting and selling activities are identified with the aim of strengthening their families’ economic capacity and thereby able to protect children from such business
  • 50 children aged above 15 are also supported to engage in age related petty trade so as generate income and reunify with their family. These children were stationed at Addis Ketema where the national bus station is located migrated from different parts of the country.
  • Skill building training delivered for 15 most vulnerable young boys, of which 4 boys are people with disability. Most of the trainee received beatification training for 9 months. Parallel with the skill development training the young people’s received life skill trainings and participated in group peer discussions on the prevention of HIV/AIDS and SRH hazards.
  • Provided music materials for 12 youth clubs to generate their income through performing music as means of income generating activities. The youth clubs/associations committed to support their members and the club running costs from the income. The youth club also committed to use the music groups for

Case 1

Meselech Ambaya is a 28 year old mother and foster parent with a heart-breaking story. She lives with her mother and together they take care of the two daughters (age 12 and 10) of her brother, her sister’s daughter (age 17), and her own 9 year old son who is mentally disabled. Her family has suffered a lot: her brother and his wife both died after being poisoned, Meselech’s husband has been imprisoned after a fatal car accident and her sister is simply unable to take care of her child. Meselech has been working on several jobs to provide for her family: first, she was working as a soldier and simultaneously studying to become an accountant. Subsequently, she moved to Sudan to serve as a housemaid and she send her income home. Meanwhile, her mother always stayed at home to take care of the children. However, after Meselech had been in Sudan for two years, her mother became unable to continue taking care of the four kids. Meselech went home and she panicked; she did not know what to do and how to provide for her family. Then, she went to the Woman, Youth and Children’s Affairs Office and asked for help. After two months the WYC affairs office got back to her, they selected her as a participant for Hiwot’s project and she received 5750 birr of Income generating capital. Now she has become a teff importer and is able to fulfil the basic needs of her family. Within one year, she has been able to save 1123 birr of her profits. In the future, she hopes to finish her accountant education and expand her business. However, her biggest wish is that one day, her son will also go to school: a special school for disabled children.

Case 2

Rahawa Abay (37) is a single mother who looks after two children, her own child (19) and the child of her deceased sister (7). Before Hiwot provided Rahawa with capital for income-generating activities, Rahawa worked in Dubai for four years as a housemaid. However, due to chest problems, she was no longer able to work as a housemaid and had to leave Ethiopia. She returned to Addis Ababa unable to work because of her chest pains, and was thus also unable to pay medical costs for treatment. After the government selected her as a beneficiary for Hiwot IGA program, Hiwot gave Rahawa initial capital to start a business. More specifically, Rahawa was given 6700 birr, which Rahawa used to establish a little café, selling coffee and tea, and a mini-shop. As a result of this IGA, Rahawa now makes enough money to pay her medical costs, to provide her family with three meals a day, to cover school fees and to look after her children. In the future, she hopes to establish her own cafeteria and restaurant and to be able to help those less fortunate than herself.


Skill Building

Seed Money | Capital

Self Helping Group