Nigus Zenebe: a displaced teacher on duty!
There are several civil servants at Jarra internal displacement site, North Wello Zone, Amhara Region, where there are close to 30,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs). Nigus Zenebe is one of them. Nigus was born and grew in Raya Alamata woreda, Southern Zone of Tigray Region. He was an Amharic language teacher in Bala, a small town in Chercher woreda in Tigray, before he was displaced a year ago to Amhara Region due to the conflict. Later he was relocated to Jarra IDP site, where he is now living.
“Currently, I am teaching Amharic language to IDP students at the site for free, along with other teachers teaching different subjects. We believe we are bringing back optimism and hope to more than 700 displaced students,” said Nigus. “We are happy to see school children continuing with their education in such difficult circumstances.” Nigus said civil servants at the Jarra IDP site have not been paid their salaries in 11 months [at the time of the interview in May 2022]. He highlighted many challenges facing his students including lack of food, water, and inappropriate shelter. “Of course, these challenges are also common to the entire IDPs community here.” he added. As a teacher, Nigus called for school-feeding, improved temporary learning spaces, chairs, desks, and scholastic materials for the IDP students to sustain their education in emergency settings. The preferred long term solution, he says, is “returning to places of origin sooner than later”.