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Children on the move rescued after COVID-19 outbreak in Ethiopia

May 26th, 2020

ANPPCAN Ethiopia, partner of Terre des Hommes Netherlands in Ethiopia, has intercepted three young boys who were on the move following the COVID-19 outbreak in the country. After a long journey, the boys have been reunited with their families. In the safety of their homes, they are best protected against the virus as they wait for the re-opening of their schools once the COVID-19 situation is under control.

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The COVID-19 outbreak in Ethiopia

Masresha (14 years) was together with Solomon and Desye (both 12 years old) on his way from his home village to Gondar town, the largest urban centre in the area. Their parents had forced the boys to go and fend for themselves when schools were closed by the government at the onset of the COVID-19 outbreak in Ethiopia.

After four days of travelling on foot they reached Degoma kebele, an area which is part of our Paths to Safer Childhood II project. The residents recognised the signs of the unsafe migration and came to the boys’ rescue. The locals contributed money for the boys’ travel to the nearest district capital, where the project runs a temporary shelter at the bus station.

The boys were admitted to the temporary shelter, where they stayed for six days. Meanwhile partner ANPPCAN Ethiopia together with the local police tried to trace their parents, based on the information the boys provided. When the parents were successfully traced, partner ANPPCAN Ethiopia sensitised the families about the risks of pushing the boys to migrate. A better understanding by the parents is key in protecting the boys from further harm and re-migration.

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