News blog

Blog category: Sports

Victory goes to The Wolves!

Written by Muna

You may have seen it on our Facebook page already this week, but we are pleased to announce that the Wolves won the Gondar Under-17s Cup Tournament! After battling through the group stages, quarters and semi-finals against colourfully named teams like ‘Fuad Grocery’ and ‘Medhanealem’, they tenaciously won the final against their rivals ’Esufikir’– a team who had previously trumped the Wolves 1-0 in the group stages. After their success we spoke to the members from the Link Ethiopia Wolves to tell us about that glorious day.

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A late end to the rainy ‘Kiremt’ Summer season in Gondar meant the football pitch was in particularly bad shape for this year’s tournament.

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“On Monday, all my team members were confident that we would win. But I was a bit less confident.” said the Wolves’ coach Ermias Dejen. Even though the team was in high spirits in anticipation of the game, Ermias and the audience that day felt differently. In his opinion, 95% of the spectators were sure that our team would lose. The coach elaborates why they thought that:

It’s because Esufikir have been together for the last 4 years, both in the winter and summer. They train three or four days a week. My team only meets when the academic year is over. In terms of fitness and training, all the teams we faced were better than us. It seemed like we were an under-15 team while the others looked like under-20 teams.”

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A tense half-time team huddle discusses the defensive tactics for the final half of the match.

During the final, the teams both played well and their friendly rivalry made itself known on the pitch. Esufikir may be good, but The Wolves were performing at the same level.

That’s because my players were better at controlling the ball” Ermias explains. We learned not to give up hope easily from them. We were also able to continue defending well to take them to the penalty shoot-out.” The tensest part of any game are penalties. The Wolves’ captain, Solomon, missed the first penalty, which left the team and fans crestfallen. But to everyone’s relief the team’s savior came in the form of our goalkeeper, Atirsaw. He blocked two penalties, which ended the game with The Wolves winning the Cup!

We asked Amanuel Tesfahun, lead striker for The Wolves, what his thoughts were about the game: “I didn’t expect to score that day. But all of us played the first 10 minutes well and created the chance to lead deep into our opponent’s territory into the last minutes. The fact that we scored first helped us to go all the way to the penalty shoot-out. But when they scored the equalizer we were all shell-shocked.”

He continues: “When our Captain missed the first penalty, I thought we were finished because this was what happened to our team in last year’s final. But with the heroic effort of the goalkeeper and the other penalty takers we were able to win it this time. Winning a cup is the ultimate success and it has made me very happy.”

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Members of the team proudly displaying the winner’s cup.

Against all odds, our team proved that they were the best out there and claimed a triumphant winning. Throughout every match the Wolves played, they gained new supporters, which motivated them to win. Their coach has the final word: “The prize meant a lot to me personally. Link Ethiopia has been patient with me for the last three years. And now we have contributed our part to make Link Ethiopia well-known around Gondar.” We congratulate our underdogs, the Link Ethiopia Wolves, for winning the Cup in such nail-biting fashion!

We support the Wolves in Gondar, and another young team in Southern Ethiopia, as part of our commitment to supporting sports, fitness and physical education in schools and communities across Ethiopia.

Not only do these projects give young people a fantastic opportunity to be active and focused during the long Summer breaks from school, but they give young people something to be proud of – and be part of! This is invaluable for the communities in which we work, where young people face many challenges and a lack of local facilities for getting involved in activities such as sport. If you’d like to support this work, head over to our Projects and Donate pages to get involved.

Posted in 2015, Ethiopian news, Projects, Sports, Uncategorized |

Triumphant string of victories for The Wolves

Written by Muna

It was a busy week for our Summer football team, the Link Ethiopia Wolves.

The Wolves competed in four matches, battling through the group stages of the Gondar Under 17s Cup tournament, last week. The first game was against ‘Esufikir’. Both teams were strong and remained upbeat throughout the match. At the end of the first half, the score was 1-1.

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Despite the Wolves best efforts, Esufikir gained the upper hand and scored their second goal. Esufikir won the match 2-1.

The second game saw The Wolves facing ‘Brigata.’ After the Wolves defeat against Esufikir, they were more determined than ever to win this game. If they were to lose, they wouldn’t proceed to the semi-finals. The band of brothers, drawn from Link Ethiopia schools across Gondar, definitely didn’t want to go home yet.

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In an early bout of energy and enthusiasm, The Wolves scored an early goal in the first half, which ended 2-0. In the second half, The Wolves kept energetic and sealed their victory with another goal. The final score was 3-0! This was one of their best scores, not to mention displays of skill and tenacity, yet. Things were looking up….

By winning the match against Brigata, the team entered the quarter-finals with confidence. The third game in a week was against a team called ‘Fuad Grocery’ – some of the participating teams come from schools or NGO’s, like ours. Fuad Grocery is one of the teams sponsored by a local business. Cheered on by growing numbers of avid fans the team won 2-1 and secured their reputation ahead of the semis. The Wolves were on a winning streak as the semi-finals approached and it was tense for all involved – from the players to their coach and the Link Ethiopia staff in Ethiopia and the UK. In the semi -final game they played against a team regarded as the best and most competitive competing in the tournament: ‘Medhanealem’ whose players loom larger-than-life and display a level of skill usually reserved for older players. Yet, despite this intimidating presence, The Wolves managed to score an early goal in the first half. Their tenacity and skilful defending saw The Wolves dig in and securing the match 1-0.

The Link Ethiopia Wolves have now qualified for the finals once again. They play against Esufikir – the only team they lost to this year. Last year our team made it to the finals, against ‘Kebele 03’and lost – on penalties! It was a tense and nerve racking final that ended in disappointment. We hope that this year the result will go better for the Wolves. We know they’re ready for this year’s finals and we can’t wait to see how they do.

 

Posted in 2015, Sports, Uncategorized |

Charity Golf Club team raises £1,250

Written by Muna

The Charity Golf Club organisation held a fundraising event recently at the Hainault Golf Club outside of London. The club consists of more than 20 friends, who work to make a difference in the lives of thousands by raising money for various charities. They do this by holding golf tournaments for a different charity every month throughout the year.

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We were thrilled when we heard that the club had chosen Link Ethiopia to be supported for the month August. On a sunny Saturday afternoon the golf charity tournament was held for golfers and guests. Anyone who wanted to give back by playing a friendly game of golf was more than welcome to join in. We can imagine what a fun day it was for the participants. In the end, they raised an incredible £1,250 for Link Ethiopia! The money will be used to support our work improving the quality of and access to education in Ethiopia. We want to thank the work the Charity Golf Club team have done and we wish them well in future events.

If you want to follow the club’s example, visit our website at www.linkethiopia.org and click on ‘Get Involved’. Also, don’t forget to go to http://www.charitygolfclub.org/ to support the group in future fundraising events.

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Posted in 2015, Fundraising, Sports, Uncategorized |

The Wolves return!

Written by Muna

About a week ago, our favourite summer football team the Link Ethiopia Wolves, from Gondar, played against the Andinet Elementary School. The weather they played in would make it difficult for anyone to succeed in. As if Mother Nature had it in for the Wolves, the playing field was very slippery and wet due to the continuing rainy season. But the Wolves had their eye on the ball and the as a whole maintained a strong, energetic and persistent front. In the end, the match resulted into a draw. The final score was 2-2.

Almost a year ago, we wrote about the Wolves playing and winning their first ever match in the The Gondar Town Under-15’s Tournament against Hamsalomie, another school in Gondar! Unfortunately, although they made it all the way to the Cup Final, the Wolves didn’t win and were defeated in a tense penalty shoot out. We proud of how far our team made it- in their first tournament!

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We continue to be so proud of the Wolves. We’ve seen them progress a lot and they’ve surprised everyone with their determination. We hope to see many more goals to be scored in the future by our footballing hero’s. The Gondar Town Under-15’s Tournament continues this month and we hope our Wolves go even further than last year.

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To learn more about our sports & fitness projects such as the Wolves Football Team, and to pledge your support, please head over to our Projects and Donate pages on our website.”

Posted in 2015, Projects, Sports |

Our 2013/2014 Annual Report

Written by Isabel

We have just published our Annual Report for 2013/2014 which is available to read here (link). We would like to thank you all for your support over the past year, and hope you continue on the journey with us! Below is a summary of what we have achieved with your help, and highlight of some of the work we’ve done over the past year. All of this, and more, is explored in more detail inside the report.

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Why Education?

Our work is completely focussed on changing lives through education. Whilst the impacts of schooling are experienced on an individual level, its benefits are multiplied to include families, communities and wider society. Among the benefits are an increased earning potential, a reduction in the infant mortality rate and an increase in average GDP by 0.37%.

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Further than ensuring education becomes universal, we work with our link schools to provide a quality education. To ensure this, we have 5 main targets on which we focus:

• Infrastructure
• Teaching Quality
• Learning Resources
• Inclusion (of all social groups)
• Community Support

Below are some examples of the projects we have been involved in during the 2013-2014 period, each of which reflect one or more of our targets.

St. George’s School Project

‘Having worked with schools elsewhere in Ethiopia, I could see the huge contribution that St. Georges is making to improve education’
– Hannah, Teacher and LE Volunteer

Link Ethiopia supported the establishment of the St George’s School project, an initiative set up by the Northwood School Group here in the UK. St George’s, a not-for-profit non-government school, provides learning opportunities for a large intake of orphans and disadvantaged children from the local area.

One of the first classes at the new St. George’s School enjoys learning in this colourful and stimulating environment.

One of the first classes at the new St. George’s School enjoys learning in this colourful and stimulating environment.

By March 2014, the core buildings were completed and already in use. The aim is for the project to continue to expand in order to provide schooling until Grade 12. A very big thank you to Broomwood Hall and the Northwood School Group for your vision and direction so far!

Case study: Dudmegn School, Gondar

In February 2014, we installed a water station of 24 new taps at Dudmegn School. Before the installation, the school was managing with just two functional taps for a population of over 2000 students. The wider availability of water in the school has resulted in a higher attendance rate among students. We are hugely thankful for the purchases made from our Gift Ethiopia shop, shop.linkethiopia.org, and also for contributions made by the Mandala Trust, in addition to the supporters of our gift scheme.

Case study: Sincil School, Lincolnshire

At Sincil

The link between Sincil Sports College and Times Choice Academy in Bishoftu has been especially fruitful, and the partnership provided an opportunity for two students, Kyle and Ryan, to take part in the British Council funded ‘Connecting Classrooms’ exchange programme. This was a great opportunity for the boys to visit Times Choice Academy, which they really enjoyed! We are also pleased to say that Sincil were awarded funding for a second ‘Connecting Classrooms’ trip. Well done and thank you to both schools for maintaining a strong and successful partnership.

Sponsorship case study: Tejitu

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Tejitu, an 18 year old young woman from Bishoftu, has been sponsored by Link Ethiopia for approximately 5 years. Through our School Links, Volunteering and other project programmes, she has been able to gain confidence in her English language skills, engaged in global learning with students at her link school in the UK. She also helped to coordinate a ‘World Challenge’ trip at her own school, which helped her to further develop her global outlook and grow in confidence. We are extremely proud of her achievements and we look forward to seeing her fulfil her ambition of studying Biology at university.

Teaching Quality

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Investing in quality teachers is central to providing a quality education. During the 2013-2014 year, we were able to train grade 1 and grade 2 teachers in the phonics method. We have observed fantastic results so far, among them a 77% increase in the number of students using the library and a 65% increase in test scores for students of the trained teachers.

You can flip through the report below (click in the middle to view fullscreen). Enjoy!

Click here to see the full report and hear about the above achievements in detail, as well as the results of our work on global awareness, learning resources, and inclusion. Once again, we want to thank our link schools for your dedication, fundraising and ideas – none of the above would be possible without your contributions. We look forward to future engagements and successes!

Posted in 2013, 2014, 2015, Child sponsorship, Classrooms and furniture, Ethiopian news, Fundraising, Gender, Global Education, Inclusive education, Libraries, books and literacy, Other news, Project expeditions, Projects, School links, Science and technology, Sports, Tours, Uncategorized, Volunteering, Water and sanitation | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

Do we have a Right to Education?

Written by Laurence

It might seem like a simple question with an obvious answer; yes.

But across the world it’s not necessarily that simple. Children surely have the right to education. But do adults? What kind of education are children and young people entitled to? Should we have to pay for education, and if so, does education still exist as a fundamental right? Or is it now a commodity like gold, corn, property or oil?

UNESCO - Out of school children

Following the intro animation you can explore the situation in Ethiopia by going to the right-hand bar.

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Even if we all agree that we, or at least children, have a right to education, does that mean that all children will now have that education within their grasp? Will governments and institutions rise up and sever the chains holding back girls, rural children, poor children and others? Unfortunately, when you look around the world today, even with the Right to Education enshrined under Article 28 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, 58 million children around the world are still out of school.

The UNESCO graphic, which you can access via the image above, explores some of the reasons why children in a variety of circumstances struggle to access education:

  • Lack of access in rural areas,
  • More than half of boys aged 7-14 work,
  • Many girls work or undertake chores at home,
  • Poverty keeps three-times as many poor children out of school than their richer counterparts.

There is such a variety of challenges facing children in a country like Ethiopia that sometimes you marvel even at the luckier children who do have access to education – the boys who work part-time to help support their family; the girls who spend so much time looking after young siblings, cooking and cleaning; the children who walk miles every day just to get to school.

Link Ethiopia began with the question ‘why education?’ What is so important about education, why does it matter, and what changes does it bring to the lives of young people? Perhaps this seems like another obvious question with a clear answer. But in order for governments, institutions and people to change – to see that 58 million children out of school across the world is a disgrace – we sometimes have to bluntly show why education is so vital.

7MajorImpacts-01_SMALL The impacts of education on an individual’s – and a country’s – future can be considerable. © Link Ethiopia

The above graphic attempts to do that. Things are always more complex than graphics, charts and reports can show. And many of the benefits of education are intangible and can’t easily be mapped, recorded, or given a financial value. But here are some basic facts that highlight just how important education is – for health, wealth, happiness and much more besides. And I don’t think anyone can argue with that.

Posted in 2015, Child sponsorship, Classrooms and furniture, Fundraising, Gender, Global Education, Inclusive education, Libraries, books and literacy, Other news, Project expeditions, Projects, School links, Science and technology, Sports, Tours, Uncategorized, Volunteering, Water and sanitation |

The Great Ethiopian Run Experience

Written by Lynn Combes, teacher at Sincil Sports College

Sincil Sports College have been part of the Link Ethiopia School Linking programme for nearly three years now. In November 2012 I was able to visit our Link school in Bishoftu with a colleague; we were encouraged by our Headteacher to take on this experience after the school gained funding through the British Council Connecting Classrooms grant. Since then, we couldn’t have anticipated how our Link partnership would grow and blossom.

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“We were totally inspired by the the week with our Link partners. And the visit could not have been made easier for us; we were met at the airport in Addis Ababa by Haile from Link Ethiopia and from then on our adventure continued – visiting attractions, learning about the history and culture, visiting schools and projects undertaken by Link Ethiopia and finally visiting our Link school. The wonderful welcome from the pupils and staff is an emotional memory which will stay with me for life.

learning the culture

“Fast forward a year and in October 2013 I’m being asked by my Headteacher to take two pupils to take part in the Great Ethiopian Run in November 2013. This was beyond anyone’s expectations of the link programme we were part of; we are a Secondary Special Needs School for children with social, emotional and behavioural difficulties (SEBD) and unfortunately, such opportunities are not common for our children and young people. Our two chosen pupils had never been abroad let alone sit on a 10 hour flight to Africa! With only 4 weeks to get everything organised – passports, injections, tickets, risk assessment, the itinerary etc. – it was a mammoth undertaking, but everything passed and was sorted on time, with Link Ethiopia’s support!

on our way

“Once there we were met again by Haile from the Bishoftu LE office, which is about 30 miles south of Addis airport. A member of the team was then with us every day – for example, during every meal, sharing experiences and knowledge. They also supported us during the days we spent visiting schools, sights, restaurants, hotels and finally the Great Ethiopian Run itself. The week flew by but we could see that both pupils were having a fantastic week. They were speaking basic Amharic to the locals, ordering drinks and food, mixing with pupils in lessons, introducing Rounders to our Link school counterparts (Times Choice Academy) in their PE lessons. The joy, happiness and growing confidence in these two pupils was overwhelming, and we still had the GER to come.

one of the team

“We were part of the pre-race Pasta Party at the Hilton hosted by Haile Gabrselassie – what an evening, filled with celebration, dancing and music. The following day the atmosphere cannot easily described. I have been to many sporting events, as a spectator and as a participant, but this tops them all – with 36,000 people it’s a carnival atmosphere. A sea of colour all around with all the participants wearing their race t-shirts and groups singing and dancing all the way around – even the music radio stations were encouraging everyone to stop and dance as well.

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“What elation, finishing and collecting our medal whilst the partying continued! The carnival atmosphere persisted with fellow race goers celebrating their success well into the evening.

“I am hoping to make this my third year promoting and supporting the work of Link Ethiopia at the Great Ethiopian Run – the race being the cherry on the cake of a life-changing weeklong adventure organised by Link Ethiopia. Fingers crossed!”

If you’d also like to experience the Great Ethiopian Run for yourself – or with your school and possibly students as well – then please take a look at our GER2014 page or contact us and we can answer any questions you may have.

Quite a team

 

Posted in 2014, Ethiopian culture, Ethiopian news, Fundraising, School links, Sports |

Cup Final disappointment for the Link Ethiopia Wolves Football Team

Written by Zemene

“The Link Ethiopia Wolves Team played their last game on Saturday against their counterparts Kebele 03. The game was held during a hot day, and both teams struggled mightily during the tense and exciting Gondar Under-15s Cup Final.

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Within a few minutes of the game commencing, the Wolves struck eagerly and scored. And up until the 15th minute of the first half, the Wolves were leading their counterparts 1-0. But Kebele 03 managed to equalise, and from then on the game was neck-to-neck and eventually ended up 3-3.

By this point the crowd were ecstatic with excitement! Hundreds of people from all over Gondar had gathered to watch these two teams battle it out.

In order to identify the winner, a penalty shoot-out was declared. It was nail biting stuff, with the Wolves scoring 4 out of 5 penalty goals. But Kebele 03 came up and scored their 5th and final penalty and with that had won the match and the tournament.

Our team had played fantastically well and they had progressed much, much further than anyone had thought was possible for such a young band of footballing troubadours. We are all so proud of them, and they also won the support of hundreds of fans across the Gondar region.

The Gondar City Administration’s Culture, Tourism and Sports Department awarded the team a Certificate of Participation in the Summer Under-15s Football Tournament, in recognition of the Wolves’ efforts and their runner-up position.

We hopefully won’t have too long to wait to catch the next exciting match from these talented players, as both the Wolves and Kebele 03 have got the chance to play in another tournament, in the Ethiopian New Year under a program from the Gondar Town Tourism Department. Let’s hope the Wolves can build on the successes of this tournament and perhaps even take home the cup this time!

To learn more about our sports & fitness projects such as the Wolves Football Team, and to pledge your support, please head over to our Projects and Donate pages.”

Posted in Projects, Sports, Uncategorized |

Link Ethiopia presentation in North Gondar GO-NGO forum.

Written by Elsa

“Three NGO’s took part in this quarter’s North Gondar Government-Non Governmental Organisation Forum (GO-NGO Forum). They were World Vision, Link Ethiopia and IPAS. After everyone had presented their reports on Monday 18th August 2014, we visited three of the World vision projects in Dembia district of the Gondar region. These visits provided a valuable insight into the challenges and hardships faced in these communities, and some of the solutions being explored by World Vision.

Link Ethiopia presentation

Also visited was one of the Link Ethiopia’s flagship projects: St George’s School in Azezo. All the visitors expressed how impressed they were with the school and other Link Ethiopia projects which they had observed.”

Posted in 2014, Classrooms and furniture, Ethiopian news, Gender, Inclusive education, Libraries, books and literacy, Other news, Projects, Science and technology, Sports, Uncategorized, Water and sanitation |

The Link Ethiopia Gondar Under-15s team win first match!

Written by Sitotaw

The Gondar Town Under-15’s Tournament started on August 8th and the excitement around town is already heating up. And Link Ethiopia’s very own team – the Link Ethiopia Wolves – won their first game!

Team colours

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The football tournament is organised into two groups – ‘A’ and ‘B’ – with four teams in each group, with teams coming from across Gondar town.

The Wolves were assigned to group ‘B’ and their first match was against Hamsalomie in the ‘Mexico’ stadium in Gondar.

The match was fast-paced and exciting for all those watching, not to mention taking part. After a hard-fought match, the Wolves emerged victorious, winning 5 – 1. A fantastic result!

You can see the team celebrating in the photos below.

We support the Wolves in Gondar, and another young team in Bishoftu as part of our commitment to supporting sports, fitness and physical education in schools and communities across Ethiopia.

Not only do these projects give young people a fantastic opportunity to be active and focused during the long Summer breaks from school, but they give young people something to be proud of – and be part of! This is invaluable for the communities in which we work, where young people face many challenges and a lack of local facilities for getting involved in activities such as sport.

The Wolves next game is tomorrow, against Maranata, so be sure to check out the blog, Facebook and Twitter pages for the latest results!

Posted in 2014, Ethiopian news, Projects, Sports |