The Kindu Trust was founded in 1998 following a chance meeting between English woman Kate Fereday Eshete and a young Ethiopian boy named Kindu.
When Kate first met Kindu in northern Ethiopia, he was trapped in the constant struggle of living on the streets in search of food, shelter and adequate clothing. After witnessing such struggle, Kate became determined to help him and others like him, and so she established The Kindu Trust, naming the charitable organisation after the young boy who inspired her to take the action.
In the four years that followed, The Kindu Trust set up residential homes and a night shelter in five locations across Ethiopia, taking into residential care 80 vulnerable children and employing 43 full and part-time staff to care for them. An important turning point for The Kindu Trust came when a senior social worker visited the homes in Gondar and Addis Ababa and recommended moving from a service of providing residential care for vulnerable children to concentrating on childcare within the community. It was realised that the children would develop better if they were living with Ethiopian families. So the residential homes were closed and the children reintegrated into families – they were reunited with relatives or placed with foster families where they gained continuing guidance and financial support. The Kindu Trust’s role enabled those relatives and families to provide support for the children within their homes. Thus, the current Child Sponsorship Programme that is still in place today was born!
Kate retired from the day-to-day work of The Kindu Trust in January 2010 and currently holds the position of Honorary President of the charity. She moved from Gondar to a small village in the Simien Mountains, where she lives with her husband and two children. You can learn more about Kate’s current work on her website.
The Kindu Trust has expanded its operations to include a number of community-based projects that are administered alongside the Child Sponsorship Programme. By working with people in the community through income-generating activities, vocational training and localised projects, The Kindu Trust is building towards a sustainable future in its support of children and families in need in Ethiopia.