Nasttho’s Story, Ethiopia

Nasttho in a classroom at the secondly school in Sheder Refugee Camp. Mother killed and she geos to school while caring for her family. Photo by Jiro Ose

Photo by UNHCR/J. Ose/2013.

“It was the middle of the night when we fled. The fighting was terrible and even though it was dark I remember the bombs and bursts of shooting made the air smoky and light,” says Nasttho. “I remember seeing people being shot in front of me and I was scared. Somehow, amongst all of this, we got separated – one moment we were all together and then somehow we lost my mother and three of my siblings. I haven’t seen them since.”

As the city was once again engulfed in violence, Nasttho’s family was forced to flee for their lives. Despite the difficulties of life in a refugee camp, Nasttho has made the most of her new home in Ethiopia. She excels in school and is on track to finish her final years at school with top grades.

Girls and women are often made to stay in the home so we need help to be able to take the opportunity to learn. I am so grateful that I can go to school here – Education is the thing that will help change our lives.” While the future for Nasttho and her family is uncertain, she hopes to carry on to university: “I would like to be a doctor as I think this is the best way to help my people. I hope and want all Somali girls and women to learn and study and go onto university. Maybe if we are all educated we can change the future of our country.”


1 family torn apart by war is too many

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