Ethiopia has a long standing history of hosting refugees and it maintains an open door policy, giving humanitarian access and protection to refugees. Due to on going insecurity and instability within neighbouring states, including conflict, human rights abuses, famine and drought, hundred and thousands of refugees have fled to Ethiopia.


At the end of 2018, Ethiopia is expected to be hosting close to 900,000 refugees who were forced to flee their homes, 58% of whom are children, making it one of the largest refugee asylum countries in the world, and the second largest in Africa. Most refugees are from Eritrea, South Sudan, Yemen and Somalia.


The Step Up Summer Camp programme and Step Up Clubs run in the Gambella region, in the Jewi refugee camp, close to the South Sudanese border. The Jewi camp hosts 59,000 South Sudanese refugees of whom 18% are between the ages of 12 to 17. Children and youth participate in the Step Up programme to gain vital knowledge and skills during the holidays and to learn subjects and livelihood skills that they are not able to cover in school.