Ethiopia – Emergency Aid

Project Bridge: helping people in emergency situations


In Africa, health insurance, accident insurance, disability pensions, unemployment benefits and widows’ rights are unknown or scarcely known. Thus, people who suffer a stroke of fate can, in an instant, find themselves in great financial need. For example, Bisett, a 45-year-old construction worker, excavated a pit which collapsed on him. This accident rendered him a paraplegic. Bisett’s wife was pregnant at the time of the accident with their third child. The family did not know what to do next…


Many people do not have enough money to provide their children with a good education. The private schools in Addis Ababa are very expensive. In order to enter the first grade, the children have to attend kindergarten. Free public kindergarten places don’t exist in sufficient numbers. Many families are forced to enrol their children in a private kindergarten, although this is a huge financial burden for them. Young people from financially weak families often cannot afford vocational training because this type of education is only offered at relatively expensive private institutions.

Many women are abandoned by their husbands and have to provide by themselves for the welfare of their children, which is a huge burden for them.


“Bridge” helps people in Africa to” bridge the gap” during the difficult time of poverty. The aim of the project is that these people can make their living again in an independent way. However, the period of time required to do so can be several years.

How do we help?

We help with finances for room rental, school fees, food, hospital costs, clothes, shoes etc. The families who receive our help all have their own bank accounts. The money that we give them is deposited into this bank account from which they can take an agreed amount each month, so that they can live on it. All who receive our help are working (if their health allows them). It is important that we do not support passivity. Only those who work and make their contribution receive our help. The project manager visits the families once a year and can get an idea of ​​their circumstances and how they use the money they receive. We always work with local partners who have direct insight into the lives of the recipients.

Finance and donations

The help we provide is covered by private donations. Aid provided so far:

1 completed studies (female accountant who can now feed her family)

2 current study programs (1 nurse, 1 accountant)

5 ongoing school fees

4 completed school fees (as these children were able to transfer to state schools)

4 families receive support for rent and food

Martin Gurtner-Duperrex

Project consulting

"I am convinced that small, manageable development projects and personal relationships on the ground serve the people in need better in the long term than large-scale projects.”