To his mother, Feleketch Yamatawork, and father, Tekle Mamo, in Ethiopia. During the Italian conquest of Ethiopia, he grew up to be a young man with unusual abilities. When Afework was 15, the Ethiopian government chose him to come to England and study mining design. During speeches, the brash Afewerk was known for scribbling in his activity books. While this cost him the instructors' approval, it also gave him the power to see everyone around him. Sylvia Punkrust, who treasured and practiced handicraft herself, wrote a letter to Ethiopia's Ministry of Education recommending Afewe.