Singer Haleliya talks to Seifu about her new album and its release date.
Bereket Orku, who returned from Ireland to Ethiopia to become a farmer
~ Bereket Worku grows fruits and vegetables on 600 hectares of land in Wolaita.
~ She is known by calling herself ‘the hardworking farmer’ and ‘blessed farmer’.
~ It is her way of describing agriculture as a very honorable profession.
~ Before she came to Ethiopia and started farming, she lived in Dublin, Ireland.
Bereket, a mother of three children, was born and raised Hawasa.
~ She was born from a government employee family.
She completed her primary and secondary education there.
She then headed to South Sudan for work.
She worked in the defense of South Sudan. She also served in the registry of the country council.
From South Sudan she went to Uganda.
She studied law at Uganda’s Cavendish University and continued to work between Uganda and South Sudan for seven years.
It was there that she met her Irish husband.
She then traveled to Ireland.
She made her living in her capital, Dublin.
“I started farming because of my father”
Bereket says that she got into agriculture because of her father.
“. . .My father Tabor was an elementary school teacher. He also taught distance learning at Teachers College and Mandela. In his spare time, he would show us the farm work. He showed us that it was not a large farm, but 2 hectares, 3 hectares of family land. . .”
She remembers that her father used to take them to Sululta when he had time off from work in the summer.
She spent her summers working on the farm with her father.
In the summer, they grow seedlings of various plants in the house.
“. . .The salary of our father, who was an art school graduate, was not enough to raise us. So we used to grow seedlings, make sculptures and many other things in our house.”
Every member of the family was a part of this work.
Of the six children in the house, the youngest later joined the art world and the eldest went into agriculture.
She also remembers that it was during this period that she fell in love with agriculture.
This is why she says, “Even after I left the country, all I could see was the farm.”
She is doing other work and planting vegetables herself.
She says she used to beautify the compound when she was working in South Sudan defense and council.
In the end, she packed up and went into agriculture.
“I used to farm with Museveni’s brother.”
Bereket left the country before entering the profession she loved because her family was in trouble.
This is how she remembers the time.
“Life was hard. Our father got stomach cancer. We didn’t even know what cancer was. We sold all of our possessions in time. I had a baby when I was in high school. It’s not easy to push through life while raising a child alone. When I had the opportunity to go to South Sudan, I chose to leave. When I got a job, I went to South Sudan.”
After working in South Sudan for a year, she met her current husband when she was walking to Uganda to buy military equipment.
Her husband, an Irish Special Forces captain, coached then Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni’s bodyguards.