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Solomon, Ethiopia: "They are happier than ever before."

Farmer Solomon is among the thousands of participants of Plant With Purpose’s Ethiopia program. He is a forty-year-old father of five. Living in the Mokie watershed, Solomon became a member of a Purpose Group a few years ago.

“Before I became a member, I had an interest in diversifying my family’s income. I wanted to do more income generating activities beyond agriculture, but I didn’t have any access to financial support.”

Without having access to capital, Solomon found himself unable to take the initial steps to start his own entrepreneurial activities. Finding this happiness in Ethiopia seemed out of reach for him.

“Despite all this, I still really wanted to engage in new income generating activities. I couldn’t get loans, and I had no savings. The one prospect in our village were individual money lenders, but their interest rates were alarmingly high.”

finding happiness in Ethiopia

“We were stuck. Our family’s livelihood was entirely dependent on the farm. I would sell our leftover crops so that I could buy fertilizers and enhanced seeds from the government. But things changed after Plant With Purpose established Purpose Groups here.”

“I received my first loan from my Purpose Group at a really low interest rate. It was enough to help me start my sheep rearing practice. I bought two ewes and started rearing them. I now earn an annual profit from the sale of lambs. It only took three months to pay off the initial loan.”

“Now, I am rearing thirteen sheep, and when I sell them, I expect to profit. I am also saving my earnings. The increase in our household income allowed me to buy additional clothes and shoes for my children. Before, they had nothing to change into. They always wore the same clothes and shoes. Now I can clothe them and send them to school with their confidence elevated. They are happier than ever before. Now it seems possible for us to find happiness in Ethiopia!”

working to create happiness in Ethiopia

Educating his children is extremely important for Farmer Solomon. He himself had to drop out of school in the fourth grade. “I regret that I could not continue my education. I know I would have been in a better position at this point in my life if I were able to continue. But I’ve learned from that experience.

“I now encourage my children to focus on their education, and I aim to support them every step of the way to my fullest capacity. I have recently ensured that they all had the appropriate materials they needed for their grade levels. And I am further teaching them to be kind to other people, and to respect the ways of God Almighty.”

About the Author

Plant With Purpose seeks to restore hope by reversing two of the world’s greatest challenges: global poverty and environmental damage. These problems are interconnected.

Our goal is to see creation’s life-giving regenerative cycles restored and people renewed through their relationship to God, living in healthy sufficiency and empowered to dream.

We operate in eight countries around the world. Our international work is 100% locally-led, with global offices operating both as independent agencies within their country, and alliance partners with Plant With Purpose U.S., which supports their ongoing work.

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