International Fund for Africa
Issue: XXVII  May, 2012
International Fund for Africa Newsletter
In This Issue:
IFA President Speaks at 2012 Houston Africa Business Expo
2nd Vegan Conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
IFA Team and A Well Fed World Meet with UN Agency Reps
Changing Hearts and Minds: Edell's Story
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Upcoming Events


July, 2012

IFA President/CEO, Anteneh Roba M.D., to be interviewed on The Dr. Don Show, a weekday broadcast on KZZZ 1490AM (Bullhead City, AZ) early July.


August 2-5, 2012

IFA President/CEO, Anteneh Roba M.D., will speak at the Animal Rights 2012 National Conference in Washington, DC. IFA will also have an exhibit at the conference.


September 13-16, 2012

IFA President/CEO, Anteneh Roba M.D., will speak at the International Animal Rights Conference in Luxembourg. 


Fall, 2012

International Fund for Africa is sponsoring a medical mission to Zemero, Ethiopia.



IFA President Speaks at 2012 Houston Africa Business Expo 


On May 5, 2012, IFA president Dr. Anteneh Roba gave a talk about IFA's Green Community Village concept at the Africa Business Expo in Houston, Texas. The Africa Business Expo was hosted by The African Professionals Network (AfiPRO Houston), a global network of African professionals. Dr. Roba's presentation explained the holistic and comprehensive approach to improving health care in rural Ethiopia/Africa that IFA plans to accomplish with its Green Community Village concept. IFA expects to address the medical needs of rural communities and the socio-economic causes that exacerbate and, in some instances, cause poor health.


2nd Vegan Conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia 


The second Vegan Conference was held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on May 12th at the Itegue Taitu Hotel. The conference was organized and sponsored by International Fund for Africa and co-sponsored by A Well Fed World. About one hundred people attended, a turnout that exceeded our expectations. There were nine speakers who gave presentations; five of them from Ethiopia and four from overseas. About 20 to 30% of the people who attended were already vegetarians or vegans. Roughly 50% of those who were omnivorous vowed to move towards a plant-based diet.



There was coverage by Ethiopian TV and EBS, which is a Maryland-based TV company that broadcasts on dish network in the US, Europe, Ethiopia and the Middle East. The Ethiopian TV station interviewed the president of IFA, Dr. Anteneh Roba. EBS interviewed the co-founder of IFA, Miss Seble Nebiyeloul and Dr Roba. The interviews were televised in Ethiopia and abroad several times after the conference ended.


One of the goals of the conference was to create awareness and to spark interest and increase the number of people who would join the Ethiopian Vegan Association. The goals seem to have been met by the number of calls IFA office has received since the conference.



IFA Team and A Well Fed World Meet with UN Agency Reps 


Dr. Anteneh Roba and Ms. Seble Nebiyeloul, from IFA, and Dawn Moncrief, from A Well Fed World, met with the Section Chief of the United Nations Environmental Programme in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on Serge Bounda and the representative of UNECA, Nestanet Deneke as well as representatives of the UNDP and FAO, at the UN compound in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. We discussed ways of working with the various UN agencies in bringing IFA's Green Community Village concept to fruition in rural Africa, starting with our current project in Northern Shoa province. Dawn Moncrief of A Well Fed World asked some questions about the current policies of the various agencies on food security issues in Africa. The meeting was very successful and the UN team pledged to support IFA in any way they can.


Changing Hearts and Minds: Edell's Story


On May 17, 2012 IFA president Anteneh Roba and Seble Nebiyeloul co-founder and COO of IFA rescued a dog they found on the side of a road in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia severely malnourished and with an injured leg. They named him Edell. It is speculated that Edell was the unfortunate victim of a hit and run and his leg was crushed and the wound left untreated and exposed for at least a week or more.


When Dr. Roba and Seble found him, they immediately contacted a veterinarian who treated Edell as best he could, amputating the leg and putting him on appropriate medications. Unfortunately, due to prolonged malnutrition, Edell had difficulty eating and the wound became infected and eventually he passed away. Edell's life was wrought with pain and suffering and he never experienced a loving touch, a full belly or a safe place to rest and we can only hope that in his last few days of life Edell understood that he was finally loved and cared for.


It is difficult to understand how a dog could live such a miserable life when in Western countries there are shelters and adoption centers for stray dogs with out a home. It may seem as if there is an indifference to animal suffering in Ethiopia, where there are thousands of homeless dogs, donkeys, horses and other animals wandering the streets and suffering from open wounds or hungry bellies. On the contrary, there is a lot of sympathy for these animals in Ethiopia, but unfortunately that sympathy is suppressed by cultural norms and taboos. We at IFA want to break those taboos and cultural norms and encourage people like the care giver at the foster home Edell stayed at, who showed so much compassion towards Edell. There are a lot of people who have compassion for animals in Ethiopia and the rest of Africa,who need to be supported and encouraged to put their feelings in action by helping animals in need and rescuing and caring for strays like Edell.


We hope that others, in Ethiopia and around Africa find courage and follow the lead of the wonderful lady who showed so much compassion for Edell at the end of his short and miserable life. We at IFA will continue to do our very best to help all sentient beings both of the two-legged and four-legged variety despite all the challenges inherent in advocating for both human and non-human animals.


--Anteneh Roba