In March, a team of 10 left their families and busy lives to volunteer to work with single mothers at Tabitha Reach’s Ethiopian headquarters in Addis Ababa. The 8-day trip was filled with planned events and had some unplanned networking opportunities that enabled Rita Khayat, the Founder and the volunteers to share about Tabitha Reach at the United Nations and beyond!
The mothers experienced a packed week of training activities done by the volunteers & staff:
- cooking classes
- sewing classes; including embroidery stitching
- computer classes (for the literate women)
- business training – the women created a business plan
- Head, Heart & Hands Training with Parenting Skills (HHH provides tools that empower & help people to thrive in their relationships)
The children were cared for by staff and volunteers while the mothers were able to attend the classes.
Rita and the team were fortunate to have two amazing drivers while there. The drivers were able to use their connections and local resources to improve the everyday functioning of the Tabitha House. They each helped with getting supplies and food and by the end of the week transformation was seen in the sewing room with the addition of brand new tables and chairs.
A few members of the team took a 2 1/2 hour drive to the small city of Woliso, in order to meet the family of Adanech, the woman that inspired Rita to start Tabitha Reach. The trip was important for all involved and a blessing for Adanech’s mother that was so thankful that Rita and family provided her daughter with work in the past and has helped her in her life’s journey.
The team visited the United Nations building and made some influential connections, including the UN of Women and the Diplomat’s Spouses Group. Opportunities for grants and potential fundraising were made known.
The team members also visited with two non-profits; WSG (Winning Souls for God) and their non-faith based program, Bright Star. Meeting the founder of these organizations was beneficial for Rita & volunteers to see how the programs were organized and funded.
One of their final visits of the week – brought about jobs for the women of Tabitha! They met with Salem from The Ethiopian Handmade Center. Her business makes clothing, baskets, embroidery, and hammocks. Salem and Rita connected and learned that their organizations could help one another. Salem is willing to send over a basket weaver from her business to help train the women of Tabitha and she also has the first job for the women of Tabitha; she needs 500 reusable shop bags made for her business. So from one small meeting – came big plans and hopefully an ongoing relationship between Tabitha Reach and the Ethiopian Handmade Center!
It was a successful, deeply rich trip – full of a great deal of networking and promise. It laid the groundwork for single moms; connecting them to local businesses and non-profits. It was evident that the women felt loved and cared for, something that every mom needs.
Come join us next time! You will be richly blessed as you bless others!