Representatives of EGST faculty, staff, alumni and students celebrated Ethiopian Christmas eve with young kids on Thursday December 29, 2016 at the Addis Ababa Juvenile Delinquency Rehabilitation Centre located at the Lideta Sub City, Addis Ababa.
The EGST community presented Christmas songs, games, read scriptures, and provided educational posters, shoes and balls for the use of the kids. They also provided cookies, chocolates and drinks to entertain them.
EGST Chaplin, Dr Ermias Mamo narrated the good news and story of Jesus Christ as shared to the shepherds in the gospel of Luke. “At the same time as Jesus’ birth was proclaimed to the shepherds in the fields, it is also shared to you today in this center as a message of joy”, Dr Ermias said.
Speaking on the occasion, EGST Development and Communications Head, Mr Addise Amado encouraged the youngsters to grow as citizens with good character and responsibility. “We consider you as our little brothers and sisters and treat like our own sons and daughters” he emphasized. Twenty EGST representatives, staff of the center and all the kids in the center attended the celebration.
It was recalled that in September 6, 2016 and July 21, 2016 EGST faculty, staff and students donated slipper shoes, books, indoor games and other items to the Centre in response to community service action.
The objective of EGST getting engaged in rehabilitating young kids who have been in the correctional administration system is to fulfill its mission in serving society by helping the kids to shape their personal growth. Currently there are more than 121 kids in the age of 9-17 in the center.
The purpose of the center is holding and rehabilitating the children after they get sentenced by the court and referred for correctional administration. The children are in custody due to unnecessary behaviors like theft, sexual abuse and killing people. The court (Child bench) passes sentence and their case is managed separately from the adult courts. In order to put this children in this center, there is a criteria set by the Ethiopian Government through the child bench order.
The root causes for the youth to commit these crimes include broken family, outrageous parenting, and bad behavior of the teenagers as the major reasons which results in lack of peace, love and basic necessities like food so that they run away from their homes and exposed to commit theft and other crimes.
On the other hand poverty is a serious problem that leads children and youth to the street. As many Ethiopian families are under poverty and couldn’t afford the living standard and can’t feed their children, the potential for runaway is high. These and other problems impose children to choose to live in the street that lead them to theft cases and other crimes. Delinquency cases which accounts for the majority is related to theft while the rest are rape cases and murder in rare cases. [EGST PR]