About "Kind Hearts" in Ethiopia
"Kind Hearts" is the name of a care-point in Ethiopia that presently serves nearly 150 orphaned and destitute children. Located on the southern edge of the capital city of Addis Ababa, Kind Hearts has 10 acres of land that can be developed to help them become more self-sufficient.
I travelled to Ethiopia with a team from Children's Hopechest (http://www.hopechest.org/) in December of 2009. When we arrived at Kind Hearts, we immediately noticed that the kids were weak with hunger. The kids were sweet and shy, and they were noticably lethargic and lacking energy. We asked the director when the kids had eaten, only to find out the care-point only had enough funds to provide food for the kids one time each week. He explained, "We are only able to feed the kids on Wednesdays." The team exchanged concerned glances as it dawned on us that "Today was Monday, and the kids were starving!"
Several from our team sprang into action and went to the local market to purchase rice, carrots, onions, flavorful spices, oil, oranges and bananas. The cook at the care-point immediately began boiling water over an open fire in a large black kettle in expectation of the meal that was about to come.
The children that attend Kind Hearts, are identified by the local government (called a Kebele) as among the neediest in the area. Some of the children are single orphans, meaning they have lost one parent. Others are double orphans and have lost both parents, and are living with a neighbor or relative that is not able to provide for them.
The care-point provides a safe place for the kids during the day, and has two teachers on staff to provide an education from pre-school through grade 2. The teachers, Aster and Alemnesh, are dedicated to the children, not only serving as educators, but also as care-givers. We could see the love and concern in their faces and in their soothing touches and reassurances to the kids.