Rural Life in Ethiopia

Ethiopia has numerous small towns and several larger cities. The majority of the Ethiopian population, however, lives in the country. If you are wondering how Ethiopians, especially those who are in the rural areas live, then this article will give you a glimpse of their daily life.

Agriculture is an important part of daily life. Men tend to focus on agricultural activities. Women, on the other hand, are responsible for cooking, taking care of children, and doing household chores every day.

Women are also in charge of pounding grains to turn them into flour and looking for wood and cow dung for the family fire. The daily life of older girls in Ethiopia is typically composed of looking after children while the older boys may be responsible for looking after the sheep. Water is often difficult to access and the responsibility for carrying water from the source back to the household lies on women and children, particularly girls.

A future Afar farmer in his fieldThe daily work life of most Ethiopians consists of growing their own food, raising their own livestock, and building their own houses. Many consider their animals, such as sheep, chickens, and cows as their wealth, since selling livestock is how they earn their living.  

One of the many things that people, especially tourists, notice, is that the rural life of the people takes place on the numerous gravel roads. You can see people on almost every road; they can be resting, passing their day, or walking. Herders may be tending to their cattle. Women do their daily ritual of fetching water by using a donkey cart, or by carrying it in the jerricans on their backs.

Only a few cars can be found in the rural areas of the country, since most people cannot afford their own vehicle. Usually you will see Ethiopians in rural areas walking, with or without shoes.

Driving is also difficult in rural Ethiopia. The roads there serve as obstacle courses that require the utmost attention of drivers so as to avoid hitting someone or something. During the rainy months or season, the roads may become impassable and dangerous.

People are fond of storytelling and visiting. The majority can’t read and they don’t have access to electricity, so talking and interacting with others is their means of entertainment. Men, for instance, love to sit and talk while drinking coffee. This is an important part of daily life.

Life Expectancy in Ethiopia

Life is hard for many Ethiopians, especially those in rural areas who are isolated and destitute. Without the abundance of food, water, and material goods found in North America, life expectancy is low. According to the World Bank, it was just 62.97 years in 2012.

We can help increase the life expectancy of people in Ethiopia by contributing to sustainable development projects. These projects bring much-needed food, water, and jobs to communities, as well as medical care, leading to longer, healthier lives.

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