More Than an Orphanage, a Home

Wondemagegn Breen from Seattle has a lot in common with the children at Kidane Meheret Children’s Home in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where he was volunteering this past fall.

“I grew up here from the age of 6 to 11,” he told ONE in October. “And then on my 12th birthday, I left Ethiopia to go to the United States.”

But Kidane Meheret “wasn’t just an orphanage,” he said. “It was where we created brotherhood and sisterhood. So, it was a home for us.”

Sister Lutgarda Camilleri, the director, said the home’s primary mission, in addition to providing the orphans and abandoned children basic necessities, is to provide them with love.

“We hope that it will fulfill a little from the distress and the sadness they feel when they find out that they are unwanted,” she said.

A number of the children choose to attend university. Many have married and have successful professional careers, she said. Only a few are adopted.

“I’ll tell you the truth. If it wasn’t God’s providence that inspired or instilled … in the heart of people to help these children, we couldn’t have coped, especially during this time.

“We would like to thank heartily, heartily all our benefactors, but especially CNEWA, that it was the first benefactor to help us. And these 25 years that we have been working here, it has never failed us.”

Read about the children of Kidane Meheret Children’s Home in “Broken, Not Crushed” in the December 2022 issue of ONE.

Learn more about Wondemagegn, Sister Lutgarda and life at Kidane Meheret Children’s Home in the video below.

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