The members of Awra Amba community initially come in order to change the harmful traditional practices exercised in Ethiopia and different parts of the world. In 1972 we established a new and a progressive way of life that we began to practice. We created a good system by living and working collaboratively, sympathetically, peacefully and cheerfully. We treat each other as brothers and sisters. This idea was established for all the people in the world.

The community was founded by Zumra Nuru who, stems from the rural part of Amhara region in Northern Ethiopia. At his early ages, he started to pose questions about the world around him to people he thought would have the answers and talking about issues such as the equality of women, the right of children, caring for the elderly and avoiding bad speech and bad deeds. However, however his family and the surrounding society didn’t accept his ideas.

Zumra began traveling from place to place, searching for people who would share his ideas. During this time he had no one to talk to, no food to eat, and no place to sleep. He was forced to sleep rough in the jungle, surrounded by wild animals. Although he spent five years in these challenging condition, he did not succeed in finding like-minded people.

After this period, Zumra returned home to his family and become a farmer, like everyone else. He started to share his harvest with the people who were unable to work due to old age or health problems. As well as sharing his harvest with those in need, during the dry season, he continued searching for people who would share his ideas.

After spending a number of years in this situation, Zumra met a couple of people in a nearby district, Fogera woreda, who were open to hearing to his ideas. As a result, he left his former community and went to live with these likeminded people. Together, they established the Awra Amba community in 1972.

The Amhara Region is located in the northwestern part of Ethiopia between 9020’ and 14020’ North latitude and 36020’ and 40020’ East longitude. The Amhara Region contains much of the highland plateaus above 1500 meters with rugged formations, gorges and valleys, as well as millions of settlements for Amhara villages surrounded by subsistence farms and grazing fields.

The world-renowned Nile River and its source, Lake Tana, are located in this region, as well as historic sites including Gondar and Lalibela. Interspersed on the landscape are higher mountain ranges and cratered cones, the highest of which, at 4,620 meters, is Ras Dashen Terara northeast of Gondar.

The Amhara region is divided into 11 zones one of which is south Gondar. South Gondar zone is divided in to 12 woredas (Districts). Decision-making power has recently been decentralized to woredas and thus the woredas are responsible for all development activities in their areas.

Fogera is one of woredas in the South Gondar zone. The geographical coordinates of Fogera are 11057’0” North, 37035’0” Est. the administrative center for Fogera woredas is Woreta. Fogera woredas is again divided in to Kebeles (the smallest administrative units) one of which is woji Awra Amba Kebele.

Hence, the Awra Amba community is located in the south Gondar administrative zone of the Amhara National regional state of Ethiopia, Awra Amba lies with the woji-Awra Amba Kebele, which is in the Fogera Woreda (district). To get to the Awra Amba community, travel 12Km from the town of Woreta, on the woreta-Woldiya main road, and seeing the sigh for Awra Amba, turn right onto a dirt track heading south, reaching the village after 2Km.

Eskinder Hailu - Manager, Highway Tours

Eskinder Hailu
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