IOCC Delivers Shipment of School Supplies to Ethiopia

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (September 23, 2005) — IOCC staff in Ethiopia presented a shipment of 30,000 books and instructional materials valued at more than $1.3 million to His Holiness Abune Paulos, Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, in a ceremony held at Holy Trinity Elementary school which is run by the Church, on September 22, 2005.

At the ceremony IOCC Country Representative in Ethiopia, Ken Baker, thanked Patriarch Paulos and the Ethiopian Orthodox Church for the growing partnership between the two agencies that includes the implementation of a $6 million project, supported by funds from the U.S. government through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), to prevent the further spread of HIV/AIDS in Ethiopia.

“At all of the schools I have visited during my travels in Ethiopia, I have seen the lack of teaching and reference materials for students to use,” observed Ken Baker, IOCC Country Representative in Ethiopia. “This donation will obviously have a positive effect on the students.”

The Ethiopian Orthodox Church will work with IOCC to distribute the materials to a network of schools it operates throughout the country. Students from primary school through high school will benefit from the shipment.

The project was also made possible through the support of the Ambassador for Serbia-Montenegro to Ethiopia, Ivan Zivkovic, and a contribution by Serbian basketball star Vlade Divac.

The school materials were provided by IOCC in cooperation with the Brother’s Brother Foundation in Pittsburgh, Pa.

IOCC has been active in Ethiopia since 2001, when it began supporting small-scale agricultural projects in partnership with the Ethiopian Orthodox Church’s relief office, the Development and Inter-Church Aid Commission.

Baker also acknowledged the efforts of the Ethiopian Ministry of Education and Ministry of Revenue for their quick action in agreeing to this project and effecting customs clearance.

The shipment is part of IOCC’s growing gifts-in-kind program that allows IOCC to deliver donated shipments of high quality relief and development items it receives from corporations and partners in the United States.

Founded in 1992, IOCC is the official humanitarian aid agency of the Standing Conference of Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas (SCOBA).