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Libnesh's story

Her hand washing classes protect students from disease

Cycles of drought and hunger

580,000 refugees|Malnutrition|Building resilience

In recent years Ethiopia has seen significant economic growth, declining poverty and improving food security situation. Yet, it remains vulnerable to climate-related shocks – drought; flooding; outbreaks of disease and movements of refugees from unstable neighbours.

High rates of maternal and infant mortality, limited access to clean water, lack of sanitation and hygiene facilities and poor nutrition continue to affect much of the population, with more than 80 per cent living in rural, remote areas.

Despite these internal challenges, Ethiopia is host to Africa’s largest refugee population of 587,000 people seeking sanctuary from conflicts in South Sudan, Eritrea and Somalia.

A food crisis that affected all of East Africa in 2011, following several years of poor harvests, led to hundreds of thousands of Somali refugees fleeing into Ethiopia, which was itself seriously affected by the crisis. This illustrated the vulnerability of Ethiopia’s social and health infrastructure to unexpected shocks.

International Medical Corps has been working in Ethiopia since 2003 providing projects in clean water and sanitation, food, violence against women, mental health, sexual and reproductive health, HIV/AIDS and primary health care. We work in towns, cities, rural areas and refugee camps.

Food: We take a preventative approach to stopping malnutrition, supporting acute malnutrition programmes for the sickest children and preventative efforts including infant feeding programmes, training community volunteers to screen and follow up on malnourished children and employing local mothers to take healthy nutrition education to their communities.

Mothers & children, Reproductive Health, HIV and AIDS and Youth Programmes: We integrate these elements in all of our programmes, providing education and training, equipping health centres with medical supplies and treating patients.

Clean water & sanitation: Hygiene and access to water are vital to reduce diarrhoea-related deaths among malnourished children and pregnant or lactating women. We build latrines and rain water harvesting systems, rehabilitate water supplies as well as training community volunteers and health workers in sanitation and hygiene.

Explore Ethiopia

Our impact and work

Gambella woman runs

The strength to carry on

The strength to carry on

Overcoming trauma

After the tragedy of losing her whole family as she made the dangerous journey from South Sudan to Ethiopia, 14-year-old Nychote came to us for support

Preventing violence to women

Preventing violence to women

Community education in Ethiopia

A young volunteer from South Sudan is determined to promote equality for women and girls


How washing your hands can save your life in a crisis

How washing your hands can save your life in a crisis

How washing your hands can save your life in a crisis

Understanding the importance of handwashing and spreading the message to others

Dejene and his donkey

Dejene and his donkey Bula

Dejene and his donkey Bula

Help from a donkey in Ethiopia

“In the past we were always short of food, because there wasn't enough money. I had no opportunities to help myself. Now we can make a difference to the whole community." - Dejene

Woynishet and her weighing scales

Woynishet and her weighing scales

Woynishet and her weighing scales

How simple scales can save lives

It takes very little to make a community more resilient to food crises, but small changes can make a huge difference. See how Woynishet and her weighing scales are protecting children from malnutrition in Ethiopia.

Clean hands in Wolyata Ethiopia photo by Ashley Gilbertson

Celebrate the toilet

Celebrate the toilet

A new latrine

These school children in Wolyata show why we should celebrate the toilet.


Help us go further and reach more people faster.