Program Interventions
& Achievements

Programs of EPaRDA aimed at making targeted interventions to support communities through skill-building schemes, knowledge- and information-based programs and livelihood development interventions that would enable pastoralists and agro pastoralist to manage their own development processes. During its development endeavors for over the last two decades years, EPaRDA has undertaken various programs, projects and activities in wide set of sectors as described below.

Food Security &
Improving Livelihood Assets

Combinations of natural and man-made factors have made most pastoralists and agro pastoralists communities vulnerable to drought, resource based conflict and other socio-economic problems. To change this situation, EPaRDA, together with its development partners, has focused efforts to ensure food, improved livelihood assets and promote peace and collaboration . To this effect, EPaRDA has achieved notable results mainly in income generating activities, small scale irrigation, livestock productivity, health and marketing, fishery, and bee keeping as summarized below.

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Water Resource

Water scarcity, erratic rainfall and limited water harvesting practice have long been known as the prominent challenges. As a result, the pastoralist and agro pastoralist communities face recurrent problems such as draught, conflict over water resources and the spread of water born diseases. Accordingly, EPaRDA have made various interventions to improve access to water resources through construction of a number of water ponds, earth dam, subsurface dam and other water structures. In addition to the water structure development, water management committees’ skill training was also provided. This intervention has improved access to water for livestock and contributed to the improved livestock production of communities in the areas.

Natural Resources
Management (NRM)

Population pressure, climate change and poor management of natural resources have been the major problems causing chronic degradation of natural resources and recurrent droughts.  Accordingly, activities focusing on Natural Resources Conservation and Management are the main areas of intervention by EPaRDA.   The underlying purpose of the NRM interventions is to improve the natural resources conditions for the availability of animal feed and vegetation cover.  EPaRDA’s NRM activities include; natural resource conservation, introduction and promotion of moisture stress resistant plants such as seedlings of elephant grass and moringa, rangeland rehabilitation and rangeland development works with provision of agricultural and farm tools, training and technical supports to NRM groups.


Education is the core and principal drive for development. In pastoral areas, however, education services are characterized by low rates of school attendance and achievements, and generally various barriers in access to education – this is even worse to female students. In response to this, EPaRDA has initiated basic non-formal education in the intervention areas. Accordingly EPaRDA has contributed for increased access to education and school enrollment in the intervention areas.


Limited access to health promotion and disease prevention programs and healthcare services are major health challenges. The cultural and social norms surrounding the health behaviors and low awareness are major barriers to access health services. To address challenges of the health services, EPaRDA has undertaken various activities in its intervention areas – with primary focus on maternal and child health.

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EPaRDA has been working on HIV prevention through awareness creation, VCT, training of volunteer health promoters, mobile outreach VCT services, and establishing and strengthening associations of people living with HIV/AIDS, youth clubs and school based clubs, production of various educational IEC materials.

Gender Equality &
Women Empowerment

EPaRDA has been assisting women in the pastoral and agro-pastoral to improve their livelihoods – and
women empowerment and enhancement of gender equity key components of every project.
The main issues include gender equity, harmful traditional practices, workload easing mechanisms and gender on decision making. After the workshops and trainings, for example, women are participating in most of the meetings that are usually held by men, which is the first of its kind in the communities.
EPaRDA has been addressing gender equality and women empowerment through various awareness raising platforms, training and also creating opportunities for alternative livelihood activities to generate income. In partnership with Plan International, EPaRDA has also implemented a project entitled ‘Coordinated Action to Accelerate the Elimination of Early Marriage in South Omo’. As a result of this, over 130 girls were rescued from arranged early marriage, and received legal protection services; and about 300 early marriage cases were also nullified / cancelled by local elders. In the intervention woredas, school enrollment and school retention has significantly increased among young girls. In line with this, about 600 hundred girls were also directly assisted with educational and hygiene materials/p>