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This is where we post news of events arranged by Exeter Ethiopia Link in Exeter and reports of visits made by members of the Link to our projects in Ethiopia.

Year of the Librarian Launches
25 September 2018


We were delighted that Waterstones bookshop in Exeter offered to host an evening with author Helen Pankhurst on 12 May. Not surprisingly it was a sell out, and all proceeds went to EEL, so we owe huge thanks to Waterstones.

 With her family history and background Helen is an established authority on women's rights. She has just published a new book 'Deeds Not Words', to coincide with the centenary celebration of votes for women.

 The special connection is that she grew up partly in Ethiopia and ever since her Grandmother, Sylvia Pankhurst, moved there, the family has had very strong ties with the country.

 We were proud and excited to announce at the event that Helen Pankhurst has agreed to become our very first Patron! We look forward to working with her to raise awareness and understanding of our projects in Ethiopia.


Year of the Librarian.

A campaign to raise awareness of our work with libraries and literacy to meet the needs of children in the Nekemte area of Ethiopia.

Helen Pankhurst
at Exeter Waterstones
on 12 May 2018

Posted 26 April 2018

Helen Pankhurst will be speaking on The Centenary of 1918:  Reflecting on Women’s Rights - Past, Present & Future at Waterstones in Exeter on 12 May. This event has been arranged by Exeter Ethiopia Link in association with Waterstones. Members will be aware of the Pankhursts' long association with Ethiopia. Click on the button below to download a flyer giving full details of the event.

AGM 2018

Posted 28 March 2018

Our AGM took place at Exeter Community Centre on Saturday 24 March 2018. See the updated Structure section on the About Us page for the new list of Officers, Committee Members and Trustees.

The Annual Report for 2017 can be downloaded here.

Following the business meeting there were four interesting presentations:

UNICEF's Rights Respecting Schools Award

With support from Head teacher Tina Rodwell-Lynn and Teaching Assistant Tanya Stilwell, two students from Blackawton School, Didi and Ben,  gave a presentation on what the school has done to achieve a silver award for UNICEF's ‘Rights Respecting Schools'; they are now working to achieve a ‘gold’ award. They also talked about how they have supported their link school, Birka Bekumsa, by fundraising to buy books and by making language cards to help Ethiopian pupils learn English.

Inclusive Education Project (IEP)

Ella Huffman presented an update on the IEP project, which has now completed after 3 years with some impressive outcomes: 3827 children with disabilities now attending across 198 schools and 150 school disability clubs set up, as well as parent groups.

Click on the button below to see Ella's presentation slides (pdf document)

School Libraries & Learning Centres (SLLC) project

Emma Sarton gave an update on the SLLC project which has now completed its second year to develop and improve school libraries and learning centres, having a measurable impact on improving pupil literacy levels.

Click on the button below to see Emma's presentation slides (pdf document)

Vision Aid Overseas (VAO) visit to Nekemte Eye Clinic

Alex Taylor and Jill Grainger reported on the visit by volunteers from VAO to the eye clinic in Nekemte, which was supported by funds from EEL. The volunteers carried out 842 eye examinations at the clinic, as well as a further 516 at outreach clinics, and dispensed nearly 700 spectacles. VAO are considering a further visit in 2018.

A selection of photos taken by Alex and Jill are presented in the gallery below.

Acoustic Cafe 2018

Posted 18 March 2018

It was great to see a full house at this year’s Acoustic Café in Topsham, with many new faces and new musicians too. The evening started with a relaxed Ethiopian coffee followed by the Acoustic Café with six local musicians playing to around 80 people.

Our huge thanks to the musicians who played for free, Jeff for helping organise them, the soundman, and the great team of volunteers.

We raised £788 which will go a long way on the ground in Nekemte.

Musicians this year included:

Pete Falloon, Anna Jones,  Ergo Schmidt & Tom Nancarrow,

Mark Taylor, Hannah and Graham, & Linda. 

Click on the buttons below to see the musicians on the web.

Notice of Annual General Meeting

Posted 17 February 2018

Vision Aid Overseas Report on Visit to Nekemte

Posted 12 January 2018

Exeter Ethiopia Link donated £1500 to the VAO (Vision Aid Oversea) project in Nekempte. The money was used for the outreach aspect of the programme which focused on school children. In addition, EEL funded 1000 frames, 2000 uncut lenses and 750 readymade glasses. Enquiries are being made to find out if the young man featured in the report has been treated in Addis. We are delighted that VAO are considering returning to Nekemte next year.

Acoustic Cafe 2018
Ethiopian Coffee Ceremony

Posted 11 January 2018

This year's Acoustic Cafe will take place at Mathews Hall Topsham on Saturday 10 March,
7.30 - 11.00 pm. It will be preceded, 6.30 - 7.30 pm, by a traditional Ethiopian Coffee Ceremony.


Posted 9 January 2018

Our trustee, Valerie Huggins, has published a number of papers and articles drawing on several of Exeter Ethiopia Link's projects. Click on the button below for descriptions of each publication and to find out how you can gain access to them.

Successful Acoustic Cafe

Posted 22 June 2017

This year our annual Acoustic Café was kicked off with a traditional Ethiopian Coffee ceremony with coffee, popcorn and Ethiopian music. This gave us a nice chance to meet and welcome some of the young (16-19 year old) East African and Iraqi people that now live in Exeter.

Annual Report

Posted 1 June 2017

The Annual Report for 2016 was presented at the recent AGM. Click on DOWNLOAD to download the report as a PDF