Financial Literacy And Entrepreneurship Training Empowers Conflict-affected Communities In Ethiopia’s Amhara Region

Kombolcha Town, Amhara Region, Ethiopia

The Association of Evangelicals in Africa (AEA) and The Evangelical Fellowship of Churches in Ethiopia (ECFE) held a Financial Literacy and Entrepreneurship Training (FLET) in the Amhara region of Ethiopia on the 28th of March 2023. This was the second phase of the Peace, Resilience, and Food Security project in the country, focusing on those most affected by the conflict in the Tigray region. The training brought together over 100 participants from the Afar and Amhara regions and the Oromia zone.

Lilian Marang’a, AEA Head of Finance and Administration, shared Biblical principles on stewardship and accountability with Pastor Girma, the local Regional Coordinator for ECFE, focusing on the effective management of gifts and talents referenced from Matthew 25. Ms. Lilian noted from Deuteronomy 28: 1-13 the blessings of obedience promised to us. “God promised to bless us wherever we went and to bless the work of our hands. Additionally, in Isaiah 48:17, God teaches us to profit and leads us in the way we should go – how to conduct our lives, including our livelihoods.”

ECFE Peace and Advocacy Director, Dechasa Hirpessa, encouraged the participants to be courageous. He said, “This is a seed that we are expecting you to plow into your existing businesses or restart for those of you who lost your businesses because of the war in this part of Ethiopia.” Finally, he prayed for success and God’s leading in their businesses.

Dr. Girma Tadesse, Dean at the College of Business and Economics at the University of Kombolcha, kicked off the training, focusing on basic entrepreneurship skills, financial planning, and business plan development.

The training is designed to provide both basic financial literacy skills and entrepreneurship competencies structured for an informal context but highly supported by international best practices. Consultants from local universities, international resources from AEA, and locally learned knowledge from local market leaders and churches guided the training sessions. Learning was interactive, with cohorts or focus groups assigned on a regional or industry basis. The beneficiaries of the training will receive start-up capital to invest in their businesses or launch new innovative businesses in their localities.

Follow-up training on Trauma care will be undertaken ahead of the emergency food distribution in the North Welo region, Kobo, Ethiopia.

This project was funded through a partnership with the World Evangelical Alliance Business Coalition (WEABC) and grant partners from Germany.