Addis Ababa Animated (aaa): Young talents for Ethiopia’s creative sector | Africa | DW | 31.03.2023
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Addis Ababa Animated (aaa): Young talents for Ethiopia’s creative sector

In Ethiopia, DW Akademie and local partners develop a basic animation training program. The project aims to strengthen the country’s creative sector.

With the Addis Ababa Animated (AAA) project, ARMA has created, with the support of DW Akademie, a 12-week basic training program for animation artists. Accompanied by six regional and two international mentors, future animators get a solid starting point to develop their skills and start a career in the ever-growing creative sector.  

From October 2022 to February 2023, the first training phase in Addis Ababa offered 16 training positions. These were highly competitive: AAA received 850 applications.   

What is AAA - Addis Ababa Animated?

The training program promotes skills in the animation sector to also fill the gaps in related industries such as gaming, virtual reality, augmented reality and user experience design, as well as post-production in Ethiopia.  

Ruth Taylor, Mentor in Character Animation (Amsterdam), emphasized in the exchange with DW Akademie “the students’ enthusiasm and fast learning ability.” According to Taylor, their first products “already demonstrated an amazing variety and quality.” 

These skills are an important asset for the whole sector, especially media houses and NGOs, contributing to democracy and freedom of expression in the country.   

Rufael Anteneh, one of the basic level animation trainees, expressed excitement about the program: "We have had the opportunity to progress really well in a short amount of time. You don’t have that many opportunities, especially regarding animation. So, this is a once-in-a-lifetime type of opportunity that I am really glad to be a part of."    

So far, the first trainees had the opportunity to work as interns in companies in various disciplines in order to broaden their practical experience until the start of the next training unit. In the new project year, an additional professional curriculum will be developed and the program will be expanded through further networking activities and partner collaborations.  


DW Akademie is implementing the project together with local partners ARMA and The Creative Hub. ARMA is an animation studio founded in 2015 by self-taught animators. It is committed to strengthening the local animation community and it organizes competitions, networking meetings and workshops. The project is funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).