Seven years ago, Shitaye was among the poorest of the poor in the Akika-Kaliti slum neighbourhood of Addis Ababa. She had no income, and she struggled to support herself and her disabled husband. Shitaye was accepted into a bio-gas cafeteria income generating program run by EDA. This innovative program addresses sanitation, environmental and nutrition needs, while providing women with employment. The facility includes public washrooms and showers and a small restaurant. The bio-gas captured from the toilets fuels the stoves in the restaurant.
The government provided the land, EDA built and equipped the facility and trained Shitaye and her partners in small business skills and food preparation.
Today, Shitaye is an accomplished business person. She lives a comfortable middle-class lifestyle and enjoys her work. The restaurant has expanded to provide meals for a local government run day camp for vulnerable children, and the group plans to start offering meals to local college students in the near future.
“I am no longer the poorest of the poor”, says Shitaye with a smile