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Discovering the Joy of Work

Written by ERYN AUSTIN-BERGEN



There’s not much motivating about being a day labourer.

For starters, you can never be entirely sure that you will actually get work when you go out to look for it. And no one misses you if you don’t show up for a day…or a week. They just hire another day labourer – they’re a dime a dozen in poor communities like Feyine Terano. And the pay is well below a living wage.

It’s not difficult to see why Habtamu developed a lax attitude toward work. He’s 36-years-old, married with four sons, and owns basically no material possessions. His family doesn’t have proper clothing or enough to eat – his children are perpetually hungry. To add insult to injury, their thatch roof leaks buckets of water every time it rains. Habtamu’s day-to-day life is totally demoralizing and there is little hope on the horizon.

Fortunately, this year, Habtamu had the opportunity to participate in FH’s Work Ethics and Resource Management training. It revolutionized his approach to work. It introduced hope. 

Habtamu began to work harder and more consistently; finally, he felt motivated to try! The work ethics training reframed how he viewed work and his role as a provider for his family. The resource management training provided him with the practical tools to know how to make the most out of his income and start saving. Habtamu figured out how to cut resource wastage. Instead of being consumed with his own failures, he began to focus on his family and commit himself to caring for them. 

The changes Habtamu made paid off. He was finally able to clothe his children and provide school supplies so they could attend school regularly. He could put food on the table every day. He has even been able to save enough to purchase two cows and two donkeys! With his new resources, Habtamu plans to develop his farm so he can diversify his income and not be reliant on day labourer wages. 

As Habtamu’s dignity is being restored a new sense of self-worth is growing his determination to succeed at work – a feeling he never had before! His wife and children are eternally grateful.

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Food for the Hungry: Discovering the Joy of Work
Discovering the Joy of Work
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Food for the Hungry
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