1 januari 2009
Let Us Change was founded at the beginning of 2009 by Johan Vandenbossche and Aynalem w/ Emanuel. It all started with one boy who lived on the streets and had no other options. In December 2008 Aynalem, a retired teacher, and Johan, who was in Ethiopia for his master thesis as a journalist met each other, and later they met N, a small boy living on the street. They promised each other to take care of him. N. would be living with Aynalem, and Johan would make sure that Aynalem would always be able to take care of the boy. The idea of Let Us Change was born.
1 april 2009
It soon became clear that it wouldn’t stop with one child. There were still so many in the same situation. Two boys joined quickly afterwards. They cosily lived together in Aynalem’s house where they received shelter, food and above all: love. The three of them were sent to school. Meanwhile the local NGO ‘Let Us Change Ethiopia’ was founded and Johan started searching for sponsors in Belgium for the big dream: a home for 20 street children.
Let Us Change I
1 februari 2010
Finally a suitable and affordable house was found: 3 rooms, a bathroom and a small kitchen. Our own small paradise. Nine sero-negative (!) children joined the LUC-family almost immediately. They were all found near the church spire, where the greatest part of the beggars live. Personnel was also hired to take care of the children, carefully picked out at the same place…
1 maart 2010
The nine newcomers visibly progressed rapidly in their first weeks. At the end of March, one could really notice a metamorphosis had taken place, physically as well as mentally. Meanwhile the first small houses for some parents of the 12 children were rented, as well as for some other extremely poor families. Those who were capable, were helped in finding a job and the children were sent to school.
1 september 2010
In 2010 LUC started paying the educational costs of 20 children stuck in a prison in Dilla, a city south of Hawassa. They were imprisoned because of crimes their mothers committed. It only costs 14 euro per child per year to provide education, so they have a fair chance when they become adult and may leave prison.
1 juli 2011
The birth certificates for our 19 children are all taken care of. 19, since 4 additional girls recently joined. Two of the LUC-children had such good school results they were allowed to skip a year, the others also did very well. The number of small houses we rent in Hawassa for poor families increased to 40, bringing the number of aided people to around 130. Most of the adults in this group finally found a job.
1 augustus 2012
More than 10 volunteers from 5 different countries visited LUC during the summer of 2012. They refreshed the house and played with the children, who once again had fine results at school.
1 januari 2013
A sponsor assured us they would provide budget for a second house. Promptly no less than 15 new children were included in the current house, which brought the total of children to 34. We couldn’t wait any longer, the need was too high. Again a big step. And at least equally important: all of them (newcomers as well as veterans) sero-negative!
Let Us Change II
1 juni 2013
We have waited for a long time, but finally our second home is a fact. It’s a beautiful house with a nice garden in a quiet neighbourhood, nearby our first home. It will be the place where our girls and youngsters will grow up happily. We also have our own Bajaj now, a fantastic thing. It allows us to go where and when we want.
1 januari 2014
A new year, a new moment of growth. During the last quarter of 2013, more than 20 new children joined, bringing the total up to 56. We were able to do this thanks to the extra capacity delivered by the second house. Additionally, a new Trees-project was founded in Ethiopia, as well as a partner organisation in The Netherlands (Stichting Let Us Change). Things are moving fast.
Let Us Change III
1 augustus 2014
Exactly one year after we rented a second house, we now open our third house. Due to the very steep growth in numbers of children, the second house quickly became too busy for the little ones. These 9 youngsters have now been moved to a third house, where they have a more quiet environment to grow up and adapted care can be given. Another (great) step forward!
1 januari 2015
In 2015 Let Us Change started the collaboration with Empower Ethiopia, an American partner. Just like the Belgian vzw Let Us Change, Empower Ethiopia offers financial support to the NGO in Ethiopia.
7 maart 2016
Not only these cuties came to live in the Let Us Change house. We also offer a temporary home to children who lived on the street while their parents are living on the coutnryside. The government is working hard to link these children back to their family. But this brother and siter will stay forever with us!
Let Us Change IIII
15 maart 2018
In March 2018 Let Us Change opened a fourth house. That house became the new ‘boyshouse’. The oldest boys of Let Us Change moved to the new place and the old boyshouse (the first house of LUC) was transformed into a workplace. Mainly cooking and washing happens in this workplace. This way the children in the other houses have more room to play.