Hirut Jifara

Project: Step Up Addis - Beautification and protection of urban public space

Hirut Jifara Abdi was born and raised in Addis Ababa with a life-long fascination to know herself and her community. She is especially interested in the fields of theatre art and public health. Therefore, she earned her Master of public health (MPH), Bachelors of Arts in theatrical Arts and Bachelors of  Science in Environmental Health from ACIPH, Addis Ababa University, and Hawassa University respectively. She has more than twelve years of experience working in different parts of Ethiopia. Throughout her career, Hirut has acquired vast coordination, planning, implementing, monitoring and evaluation skills in different public health and promotion activities. Hirut also volunteers on environment and sustainability-related projects such as Active citizen in the horn of Africa for the development of her community. She has strong passion and interest to show how Art can make change the world.


My project focuses on the beautification and protection of urban public spaces by creating awareness, public engagement and ownership by using Art as the main tool. The project idea has a huge part on the everyday life of the community. It uses different methods to engage the society especially Artists, young leaders, and volunteers. Despite its importance, most of urban public spaces in Addis Ababa are mismanaged, do not respect its historic value and environmental benefits. Therefore, the Step Up Addis project, believes that there is no better way to show the power of art and connect people than beautifying and protecting these spaces. The goal of the project is to improve and sustain the quality of life of the community by making urban public spaces aesthetically pleasing, attractive and well maintained so that it brings about positive change and sustainable development. Through participation and active engagement of the community, the project is expected to create a sense of pride and ownership while fighting to combat the impact of climate change.


Even as a child, I was always curious about the environment and my community. Throughout my journey, I discovered that it is through the fields of Public Health and Theatre Art that I can contribute to a sustainable world. Consequently, I have participated in different projects and workshops in the areas of climate change, environment and sustainability. My long-term goal is to show how ART can make a change and that young women can be leaders in the environment and sustainability disciplines. In addition, I believe it is my responsibility as a young leader to educate and encourage others by extending my knowledge, experience, and skills.