Born and raised in Ethiopia, I earned my BA degree in language and Literature and education as well as an MA in Counseling Psychology from Addis Ababa University. My educational background has thus been a mixture of various disciplines giving me a mixture of experience. This has made me strongly believe that a vertical, horizontal and functional movement can greatly enrich one’s knowledge and practical abilities. I have also attended USAID Global heath e learning center and successfully completed 48 courses and achieved the master level.
During the years that followed my undergraduate study, I served as a bilingual (English and Amharic) journalist in the Ethiopian Radio and Television Agency (ERTA), an experience that helped me to expand and understand analytical concepts, techniques and different software packages. I produced documentary films in English; news reporting; news editing; translations; talk-shows anchoring.
Among the documentaries and talk show programs I produced at ERTA (all footages are available at ERTA library) are:
HIV/AIDS pediatrics (in collaboration with CU-ICAP); Double Orphans (Focuses on HIV/AIDS); A call for Action (focuses on the heart patients); 952-Wogen AIDS Talkline Youth Reproductive Health; Environmental Heroes; Belesa ; Beshilo; Archeological Findings on an Anamnesis; Ethiopian Archeological Exploration - Selam & Anmensis; Adwa; External and internal trafficking; Somalia Warlords Disarmament.
Created a special talk show entitled In the Shelves a special ETV program presenting focusing on well-known Ethiopian published books; journals and research publications: among the few are: “Sex Is a Gift” with Ato Jenberu; Early Childhood Education featuring Laureate Prof. Tirusew Tefera; Ethiopian Indigenous Knowledge hosting Demeke Mekonnen, AAU; Tobia - The first Ethiopian novel; Afewerk Gebreyesus; Notes Inside the Hyenas Belly; Nega Mezlekia; Kadmas Bashager, Bealu Girma, and others.
Special Health Related Programs: World AIDS Day; Nutrition; World Health Day; World Water Day; and Refugee day.
At the present time, I am working as Advocacy and communication officer for the biggest professional association in the country (Ethiopian Public Health Association-EPHA), which presently representing the African public health associations and is now preparing itself to host the 13th World Public Health Congress in 2012.
As part of my duty in the association, I am always assigned to planning ,budgeting, implementing, monitor and evaluate the ongoing communication and advocacy programs, conducting studies, undertaking surveys and surveillances at national level in areas related to health communication; Produce and distribute relevant and timely press release, and quality brochures, booklets, newsletters, briefing notes, billboard advocacy messages, and special public health events and mobilizing campaigns ; dealing with in public health care issues, and health events and campaigns. This entails events planning; media coordination; development of event on campaign communication strategy, message development, materials production and dissemination. ; Organized advocacy/social campaigns, events to promote public health issues/concerns for policy/social changes; Organize local and international conferences, disseminate updated communications style; templates as well as branding and positioning of the organization to all staff and ensure the effectiveness and proper use of these instruments; Strengthening networking and facilitating communication within the association’s constituencies and partners through various mechanisms such as: monthly updates, news release, quarterly publications; website postings, establish and maintain documentation of the association’s activities including minutes, proceedings, special publications, journals, legal documents, photos and videos, and the like.
During my years at EPHA, the prevention and control of public health concerns were have been one of the main priorities of the association and therefore I was heavily involved in managing and coordinating communication activities at the operational level. While working with HAPCO Governing Bodies, I was actively involved in the development of HIV /AIDS Behavior Change and Communication Guiding Framework (2010-2015), serving as Technical working member for National Mental Health and organizing and coordinating Strategic Health Communication and Leadership Training
IEC/BCC and Advocacy Materials Development (presently in print)
I have also prepared Training manual for Tobacco Control and Advocacy, prepared media advocacy strategy for alcohol and substance abuse, conducted panel discussion on tobacco control, developed message for a brochures, posters, T-shirts and banners, mass walk, promotional materials for the 2012 WFPHA Congress.
Successful Campaign Coordination
Organized Booth for the 2009 WFPHA congress held in Istanbul, Turkey. Organized the 19th Ethiopian public health conference held in Hawasa, SNPPR with the main theme: “renewing commitment to sanitation in the new millennium: aligning with the international year of sanitation” Sub theme: HIV/AIDS; environmental health; health service and child health; Family Planning and Reproductive Health; organized pre-conference workshop: Main theme:” Multi-sectoral response to reduce road traffic injuries in Ethiopia.” Organized Mass walk on road traffic accidents; organized the 20th Ethiopian Public health conference held at Hilton, Addis Ababa. Main theme: “Road Traffic Accidents as a major public health concern in Ethiopia”. Sub theme: Adolescent and Youth Reproductive Health; Health Service; Child Health; RH; HIV/AIDS and TB; Malaria; Biomedical; Environmental Health; Road Traffic Accidents and Mental Health; Tobacco; Organized on maternal and new born health; Organized the 21st Ethiopian Public Health Conference held at Martyers’ Hall , Mekelle,Tigray regional states. Main theme: “Maternal and New Born Health in Ethiopia”
Whenever I got the opportunity I took part in short term training programs that help improve my skills. Of these trainings: Health Communication Strategies and Leadership Training provided by Johns Hopkins University; Strategic Communication Planning and Implementation: Principles and Practical Applications of Communicating Effectively with Target Audience training provided by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) Social Marketing and Health Development and Monitoring and Evaluation training are notable.
Published book, abstracts and received merit of certificate
Abebe S. the Prevalence of Mental Distress and Sexual Violence among Refuges at Sherkole Camp, West Ethiopia. Abstract of the Ethiopian Public Health Association 19th Annual Public Health Conference. 2008 Hawasa, Ethiopia.
Published book: Mental Distress and sexual Violence among Refugees at Sherkole Camp: Mental Health Perspective.