OWDA's Livelihood Program is aimed at improving the economic well-being of communities in the Somali region of Ethiopia. We believe that providing livelihood opportunities is essential for reducing poverty and improving the overall well-being of communities.
In a region where the majority of the population is reliant on pastoral- ism, and a significant number is dependent on agriculture, OWDA strives to strengthen the resilience of the livelihoods of these pasto- ralists and farmers in addition to supporting the development of alternative livelihood options. The latest innovation from the food and livelihood sector has been the village savings and lending associations (VSLA). These are groups consisting of 10 to 20 members who contribute money to their VSLA fund. The fund is then able to save the money and apply it to community needs as necessary. These could be small business loans for a member, funeral costs, school supplies, or other community needs. In times of crisis, OWDA is able to deploy several forms of community assistance. These grants allow families to meet their essential needs in times of crisis. Other notable accomplishments in the Food Security and Livelihood Sector include: 1,250,000 heads of livestock vaccinated benefiting 100,000 households ☞ Over 900,000 heads of livestock treated benefiting 95,000 households ☞ 36,000 pastoralist households supported with emergency livestock feed. ☞ 56,00 households supported with improved emergency crop seeds ☞ 30 crop farming cooperatives established ☞ 120 credit and saving cooperatives established and supported. ☞ 200 income-generating groups supported ☞ More than 500 youth trained on life skills ☞ 35 DRR committees established ☞ 46,000 marginalized households provided with cash grants ☞ Over 1000 orphans supported to date