Ethiopia

Total population: 90,873,739 (July 2011 est.)

GDP per capita (PPP): $1000 (2010 est.)

Total expenditure on health per capita (Intl $, 2009): $40

In-country partner: Ethiopian Diabetes Association (EDA)

Ethiopia lies in Eastern Africa, west of Somalia.  A landlocked country, it is bordered by Djibouti, Eritrea, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, and Sudan.  As with other African countries, substantial effort is exerted towards combating infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS and malaria.  However, the expansion of non-communicable diseases like diabetes becomes another challenge.

Life for a Child support

Commenced support in 2010.

Ethiopia is estimated to have around 2.5 million people with diabetes – whilst EDA is a fledgling Diabetes Association it already has over 8,000 members and branches in 27 locations, including major cities. Around 300 children with diabetes are members of the association, and EDA contacted Life for a Child in late 2009 as many children and youth with diabetes lacked insulin, needles, and HbA1c monitoring. In the capital Addis Ababa, only two of the eight public hospitals provide paediatric diabetes services. 

LFAC has been able to support EDA with donated Lilly insulin - the first shipment received some notoriety after the Ethiopian Airlines cargo section requested more than 70 thousand Birr (USD 4000) as storage payment costs.  EDA contacted the media and published the story on the weekly Amharic Addis Admas (the largest circulation private paper).  Many Ethiopians were touched by the story and pledged support for the children. Almost immediately Ethiopian Airlines decreased the charge by more than 70%. Two philanthropists covered the remaining 30%, and EDA received the insulin in good condition.

Dr Graham Ogle, LFAC General Manager, was able to visit Ethiopia in November 2010, meeting with EDA representatives in Addis Ababa, key doctors and some of the children and youth whose care is supported by the Programme.