From little or no penny to be a millionaire



Nowadays, Ethiopian towns are registering dramatic change in infrastructural development. Besides, improving various towns images, it is possible to create many more job opportunities to a number of unemployed citizens.

Bedriya Woldu,23, is a diploma holder in banking and finance. She graduated in 2013. The other day, while she was scanning a newspaper looking for a vacancy post, she came across an article expressing possible ways of creating own job. After discussing with people more on the issue, she decided to take a bold step on the road of creating own job organized with her friends. Then, she said, “The government helped us to engage in cobblestone laying tasks after facilitating conditions like loan, training and so on”.

“The job is good,”Bedriya said. She earns 2000 birr a month. Her life is turned round. At times, she earns more than that when she works to the best of her knowledge and capacity. She saves money via a traditional and rotatory saving system called “Equib” She cherishes a dream of buying a house.

“The number of youngsters looking for job opportunities is increasing in various newspaper vacancies that made me decide to engage in this activity. Seeing this thing I asked myself, why am I spending my time wandering here and there until I get a job?” When she shared her views with her colleagues they brought her idea.

“In fact, I earn more than government employees” Bedriya said.

Since 2013 she has been working in cobblestone laying task. She has a plan to buy a truck and supply construction materials much needed for infrastructural development.

Aboneh Daredo, 27, has been working on cobblestone laying after he graduated from Arba-Minch University in Applied Chemistry in 2012.

He said “Right after my graduation, I was thinking what I could do to change my life and that of my family. I had already realized that government salary could not bring change in someone’s life. The first thing that I did was, conducting a feasibility study of different ventures and checking the benefit of working with others. And finally, I decided to change myself through creating my own job. No body forced me to engage myself in cobblestone laying work,”Aboneh said.

He said, “Indeed, the task is lucrative. Instead of siting idle, the youth should learn from us and engage in many rewarding activities and ensure the economic growth of the country apart from being self-reliant.” There is a need to change one’s working culture, otherwise, the youth who sit without job become burdens to their nation. I have benefited a lot out of it. And hence I would like to advise the youth in Ethiopia to engage in blue color jobs not to heed old adages that scorn labor. Such attitudes lead a person to poverty.”

He added, “I know how I benefit out of cobblestone laying tasks! I have an open account and saved about 20,000 to 30,000 birr so far. In addition, in my spare time, I supply leguminous products to hotels and shops. It is the cobblestone laying task that served me a springboard to the supply business. Now I have a plan to turn an investor within the shortest time possible.

Of course, the University education has helped me well to manage various tasks—managing time and other resources. It also gives me a chance to think more about something before I set out to do it, Aboneh said. Dawit Fekadu is a General Manager of Baleraiye Association, he said the association was established by four members who graduated from various universities in different field of studies in 2013. Before we engaged in micro and small enterprises, we were attending vocational training.

He graduated from Debre-Birhane University in Journalism and Communications before three years and served in different governmental organizations for the past two years before he engaged in cobblestone tasks. “The salary I earned earlier from the government was not sufficient to satisfy my needs.”

When we start cobblestone carving and laying task we were 40. Our capital was also small but it has reached over 200,000 now. To put it in figure, some 56 members have a capital that exceeds from 10,000 birr at their personal account. At present, the association does have a total of 64 members.

We are benefiting out of it because everybody has begun tasks from zero. We are utilizing the budget the government provided us with in the form of loan allocated to SMEs according to its procedure. And we were told that through time you have to increase your saving to shift your business. As a result, most of our members have been changing life beginning from cobblestone laying and carving. For example, I had nothing while began cobblestone laying. But now I am capable of recruiting the youth to carve cobblestone and support the association.

In the near future, he said, “We are planing to engage in animal husbandry and urban agriculture. Previously, we borrowed 229,000birr. We paid over 85 per cent of our debts. When we finish the recent cobblestone project, we can pay full amount of liability. Now we have 400,000 birr capital before paying the liability.

According to Butajira Town Mayor, Tofik Mossa, during the past six months, the town had created temporary and permanent job opportunities for over 3,000 citizens in areas of manufacturing, service, urban agriculture and construction sectors. In relation to cobblestone tasks, it has made the creation of job opportunities to 700 dwellers possible enough. Moreover, the town administration has created job opportunities to Saudi repatriates. They are now engaging in various MSEs without despising labor.

And some of them are also engaging in trade and service sectors. We have also managed to create job opportunities for university graduates by organizing them in various groups. Regarding input provision and support for MSEs, we provide, financial, material assistance to them. For example, over the past six months, 3.2 hectare land has been transferred to various MSEs so that they could use it for construction shades and showcasing shops. So far, building 20 shades we had transferred them to various MSEs. We facilitate things to them so that they could get loans from various financial institutions, Tofik added.


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