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Engineering a Better World - Dire Dawa

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We are the Engineering a Better World student chapter at UCLA! Our team has partnered with a community in Ethiopia to design a latrine for a local primary school that serves over 2000 students. Please help us in achieving our target of $15k. Reaching this goal will enable the complete implementation of this critical infrastructure project.

Our Origin & Assessment Trip

In January of 2023, we were invited by USAFA and the Dire Dawa community to start a major partnership between our organization, Engineering a Better World at UCLA, and the Dire Dawa community. As part of this collaboration, our team visited Dire Dawa, located in Eastern Ethiopia, with the purpose of identifying the community’s most pressing infrastructure needs.

During our visit, we had the privilege of engaging in a week-long collaboration with various key stakeholders, including the Ethiopian Ministry of Education, the UN Representative for African Economic Development, senior management from Dire Dawa University, local school principals, and members of the Dire Dawa community. This collaboration proved to be highly successful and resulted in the inception of several infrastructure projects.

Among these projects, one stands out as particularly crucial: the construction of a latrine at a local public school in Dire Dawa. This is the specific initiative for which we are currently seeking fundraising support. We believe that addressing the sanitation needs of this school is of utmost importance, and we invite you to join us in making a positive impact on the lives of the students and the entire Dire Dawa community.

What We Have Already Accomplished
Identified project site
Hired local contractor
Completed initial Engineering Drawings
Completed Bill of Materials

Next Steps

This round of funding will support the following three stages:
The design and construction of a new set of safer and more sanitary latrines for a primary school serving 2,000 children
The implementation of a digital library to improve education access in all of Dire Dawa's many languages
The purchase of a new water tank for the primary school to increase access to water, as it is received intermittently
Following our Spring 2023 Assessment trip to Dire Dawa, we have created plans to transition the latrines to the designs shown below. This will reduce flooding, provide a means for ventilation, and create a safe platform to avoid the latrine from falling in on itself.

Current State:

Our Solution:

Our Mission - Engineering a Better World

Our goal is to support community-driven development programs worldwide by collaborating with local partners to design and implement sustainable engineering projects. Our vision includes a world in which communities can meet their basic human needs. We believe this can be best achieved by focusing on the intersection of international collaboration and strong engineering principles.

This project is being spearheaded by the Engineering a Better World Student Organization at UCLA.



  • Anonymous
    • $25 
    • 6 mos
  • Emily Hart
    • $90 
    • 6 mos
  • Anne LaFond
    • $100 
    • 7 mos
  • Durry Hashim
    • $300 
    • 8 mos
  • Khalid Ali
    • $25 
    • 8 mos


Engineering a Better World Ethiopia
Los Angeles, CA

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