Why OCE


  • Addressing Immediate Needs:  OCE is implementing volunteer-based programs in Ethiopia to meet the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of vulnerable children living in orphanages, on the street, and in the community.  These programs include tutoring, mentoring, medical care, transition services, support for children with special needs, infrastructure work, pen pals, training, and caregiver support.
  • Sustainability and Empowerment: OCE provides a "local" solution to the orphan crisis in Ethiopia.  We believe the orphan crisis is best addressed by those who live in the community, know the community’s assets and needs, and have a passion for seeing the lives of vulnerable children transformed through holistic solutions.  OCE is mobilizing and equipping individuals and organizations in Ethiopia through training, financial support, and other resources to increase their effectiveness in addressing the needs of vulnerable children.  
  • Cost: OCE is a volunteer-driven organization.  Nearly 300 volunteers from diverse backgrounds devote their time and resources to serve with OCE in the United States and Ethiopia.  These individuals volunteer because they are committed to the vision and mission of OCE and believe your contributions should go toward supporting OCE’s work in Ethiopia.  The only paid staff are OCE's two full-time co-directors and one part-time coordinator who reside in Ethiopia.  
  • Structure: Given OCE’s commitment to find a local solution, OCE has teams based in the United States and Ethiopia (OCE-DC and OCE-E, respectively).  Each OCE-E volunteer position has an OCE-DC counterpart.  The OCE-E volunteers are primarily responsible for implementing OCE’s work on the ground.  The OCE-DC volunteers are tasked with coming alongside the OCE-E volunteers to provide encouragement, support, and accountability. 
  • Accountability: OCE is governed by a volunteer board of directors that provides oversight and ensures that OCE has the resources necessary to accomplish its mission.  
  • Leverage: OCE has developed relationships with numerous individuals, organizations, and government officials who support the orphan care movement.  OCE seeks to connect and support these stakeholders so that they can use their circles of influence to improve the lives of the entire spectrum of vulnerable children  (e.g., in orphanages, living on the street, living in the community with families in poverty).