This residential school attached to st Michael's Cathedral in Mekelle, has about 112 youngsters, over a third of whom are blind or otherwise disabled, some doubly afflicted.
The church is their only refuge and offers them security and a life-times employment as chanters, drummers or future Deacons.
These otherwise marginally excluded social outcasts it accommodates are impressive for their incredible, indomitable and positive spirit at all times.
Previously these children had been sheltering in canvas covered shacks which were quite unfit foir human habitation. Abba Silas, Dean of the Theological College responsible for these boys approached A-CET for support.
This project included seven dormitory blocks, a shower and separate latrine block plus a washing area. From start to finish this took less than six months and included strong bunk beds and furnishings for all boys. On 5 July 2008, after attending the Mekelle Theological College Graduation Ceremony, Abune Paulos after an inspirational speech, blessed this project and new gowns for all students.
Abune Paulos is the Patriarch (Pope) of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church and a member of the World Council of Churches. He was awarded the Nansen Medal for peace efforts and humanitarian work. “No one loves Africa more than Africans ... and finding an African solution is significant to curb the continent's problems” states Abune Paulos.
All the children moved in that evening, some for the very first time to sleep on beds with mattresses and blankets with shower and modern latrine facilities conveniently nearby.
Visiting the well kept compound some months later, it was difficult to recognize that these were in fact the same boys, so bright, healthy and brimming with confidence and happiness. Thankfully their previous shacks had been demolished so were nothing more than a bad memory.
The construction of a new classroom block was dedicated by the Patriarch on 3 Jul 10 and incorporated a library, study facilities and an equipped light handicrafts workshop enabling the students to earn a small living.
On completion this dormitory has brought better healthier living standards with water and other services to 112 previously very vulnerable disadvantaged youngsters.
See how to help for more options.)