Awasa is one of the 77 woredas in the Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples' Region (SNNPR) of Ethiopia. Part of the Sidama Zone located in the Great Rift Valley, Awasa is bordered on the south by Shebedino, and on the west, north and east by the Oromia Region. Towns and cities in Awasa include Awasa, the capital of the SNNPR, and Wondo Genet.
This woreda almost surrounds Lake Awasa on all sides. Another water feature is Lake Chelaka which has vanished into the neighboring wetlands due to deforestation. The forest cover in the area partly covered by this woreda has decreased from 48,924 hectares (or 16%) in 1972 to an estimated 8600 (or 2.8%) in 2000, all caused by the creation of farmland, part of a process that has been under way for the last few hundred years
Based on figures published by the Central Statistical Agency in 2005, this woreda has an estimated total population of 515,898, of whom 252,907 are men and 262,991 are women; 131,107 or 25.41% of its population are urban dwellers, which is greater than the Zone average of 8.9%. With an estimated area of 942.35 square kilometers, Awasa has an estimated population density of 547.5 people per square kilometer, which is greater than the Zone average of 430.03.
In the 1994 Census this woreda had a population of 345,526, of whom 176,406 were men and 169,120 women; 72,366 or 20.94% of its population were urban dwellers.
The five largest ethnic groups reported in Awasa were the Sidama (67.47%), the Oromo (10.17%), the Amhara (8.86%), the Welayta (6.91%), and the Kambaata (2.03%); all other ethnic groups made up 4.56% of the population.
Sidamo is spoken as a first language by 69.74% of the inhabitants, 15.67% speak Amharic, 6.48% Oromiffa, 4.56% Welayta, and the Kambaata (1.41%);
Awassa is Sidama city