Congratulations to Team Warbotics for competing in the World Championships!

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Eighth grade students from Warroad, MN learned that women in many parts of the world spend hours each day collecting water.  When they realized how hard, dangerous and painful it can be to carry a 40lb jerry can full of water, they and set out to change that! These ambitious students creatively designed a water backpack/harness to make it much easier to carry these water cans.  

Their design was so impressive that they were encouraged to enter a science competition sponsored by LEGO, which they won. The Warbotics team continued to win at the district and state level and were invited to the World Championships in Detroit, Michigan where they were able to demonstrate their innovative harness to thousands of people.

While the Warbotics team was at Worlds, the WEEMA team was distributing the harness prototype to women in Ethiopia. The feedback from the community was incredibly positive. The community said that these harnesses will make a big impact on women and girls who struggle to carry the heavy load.  They asked for more harnesses to be produced and distributed as soon as possible.

The WEEMA team is currently searching for partners to mass produced these backpacks and meet the expressed need from our Ethiopian team.  If anyone has connections that may help make this a reality please send to WEEMA (liz@weema.org)!

Watch the video below to see these harnesses in action!


Tomorrow is World Water Day!

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Happy World Water Day!

We often take our clean water for granted.  Can you imagine having to walk for hours each day to collect dirty drinking water?  We can't.  Unfortunately, 750 million people in the world do just that.

But together we can change that- and, in fact, with your help we already have.

Since 2012, we have invested in constructing and repairing water systems throughout the Tembaro district in Southern Ethiopia.  We believe that by the end of 2019- in parternship with the local water department- the percent of access to water coverage of the area will have increased from 40% to over 80-85% (follow-up survey to be conducted).  What an amazing accomplishment!  Think of all of the girls and women in Tembaro who no longer have the burden of water collection and can go to school, start small business and pursue their dreams. Thank you! You made that happen.

But our work is not done.  In addition to new water projects in Tembaro, over the next several years we will expand to other areas of Kembata-Tembaro Zone as well as in the Hadiya Zone.  And we cannot do this without you. In honor of World Water Day, please consider making a generous donation in support of our water programs.

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Beyond the Fence at Mudula Kindergarten


Blog post written by Kate Murphy, WEEMA's Social Media Guru, as she shares from her recent trip.


WEEMA Standing in the playground of Mudula Kindergarten, the last thing I am expecting to hear is "Hey! What's your name?" in giggling English. I spin around and glance at the fence surrounding the KG to discover the source of the voice. A playful smile peaks through the wooden slats.

After sharing my name, I am asked a slew of follow up questions:

Where am I from?

How old am I?

Is this my first time in Ethiopia?

After each answer, I fire back questions in English. I learn that I am fortunate enough to meet Bebeta, a fifth grader whose English rivals any I have heard spoken in the small town of Mudula. It only makes sense that English is her favorite subject, a language that she is already mastering at the age of eleven. She has just come from filling up a jerrycan at a water point nearby.

After I snap Bebeta's photo with her friends, I share the photo with them. The group erupts in laughter.

Girls like Bebeta are the reason that WEEMA continues to focus on development from many angles; so that eleven year olds can spend their time working towards their educational goals instead of walking hours to collect water!