Mr. Helmut Kutin, Honorary President of SOS Children’s Villages International paid an official visit to SOS Children’s Villages Ethiopia from May 9-12, 2017. The president visited SOS Children Villages Ethiopia National Office, SOS Children’s Village Program Addis Ababa. The highlight of the visit was the ceremony for the Ring of Honour award given to SOS Mothers from Ethiopia & Sudan.
During a brief discussion he held with SOS Ethiopia co-workers at the National Office, Mr Kutin made a very inspirational speech by which he called upon all co-workers to continue their loyalty, dedication and commitment to the betterment of the lives of Ethiopian children who have lost their parents and are at risk of losing their parents. Mr. Kutin stressed that, SOS Children’s Villages is an organisation by which all its co-workers have a culture/habit of working with full dedication and passion.
National office co-workers also had a chance to forward a number of questions for Mr. Kutin to learn from his vast experiences.
On May 11, 2017, children, mothers and co-workers of SOS Children’s Villages Program Addis Ababa gathered at the gate of the village to warmly welcome Mr. Kutin. Children and co-workers with traditional outfits, a welcoming banner, SOS flags and bunch of flowers held by children made the day so colourful.
Mr. Kutin accompanied by Mr. Wilhelm Huber, CVI Representative, IB Nairobi -ESAF and Mr. Sahlemariam Abebe, the National Director of SOS Children’s Villages Ethiopia visited SOS CV Addis Ababa compound, the Kindergarten and SOS families. Mr Kutin acknowledged the renovation work undergoing in the Children’s Village and expressed his appreciation for SOS CV Addis Ababa mothers’ and co-workers’ commitment to bringing up children within a loving home. The president enjoyed playing with the children and chatted with mothers for a few minutes. He also urged the mothers to be patient to give unreserved love to children. He said “I ask the mothers to be patient and to never give up hope as children had suffered tremendously before coming here.”
Ring of honour Award ceremony, which was held at SOS Children’s Villages Program Addis Ababa om May 12 , was another colourful event that took place during the honorary President’s visit to SOS CVE. Mr. Kutin awarded the Ring of Honour Award to sixteen mothers from SOS Children’s Villages Ethiopia and six Mothers from SOS Children’s Villages Sudan. SOS Children’s Villages CVI Representative, IO ESAF, Zenaye Solomon also received the Ring of Honour by the presidential decree.
Before handing-over the Ring of Honour, Mr. Kutin said “SOS Ring is not only recognition and the biggest award that SOS family can provide, it is also a symbol that you have decided to share your laugh and your life for children who have come home to you. Whenever you feel down; look at this ring as a reminder for your promise to children and that you are not alone in this; we all stand by you” he underlined.
The president has also passed a very powerful message to the large audience gathered to honour the mothers saying “So I ask you, please let us join hands to make our children’s tomorrow better than our yesterday. It is very essential we all join hands for our children to live in this world with compassion, love and care not only in words but also in deeds.”
Mr. Dereje Wordofa, International Director for Easter and Southern Africa Region (IDR), on his part said we always know that SOS mothers are the pillar of our villages and this symbolic ring is a recognition to the love and care they have given and continue to give to children so that they become contributing members of their community.
Mr. Sahlemariam Abebe, national director of SOS CVE stressed the contribution of SOS mothers for the wellbeing of children. He said “Yes children are born in the womb of a woman. And yet there are too many children around the world who have to be reborn in the heart of our SOS mothers.”
So far, among SOS CVE mothers who are currently working; a total of 45 mothers have received Ring of Honour Award.
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