The charity is called FELICA, (the Foundation of Elisabeth Catherine), and it came to our attention through Dr. Fraser, who works with various communities in a health related role. In 2005 she was given a cheque from a Helston school Mini-Sure-Start project to give to a charity, and here she is presenting it to Elisabeth Catherine.
FELICA currently looks after 160 orphans, many of them were found as new-borns, abandoned by their mothers who were incapable of keeping them. Dr. Cathy knows a lot about this type of mothers, some have been raped, some are simply too young, or on their own, and can not afford to look after a child. Most of the orphans live in foster families, some have been adopted by Dr Cathy. Visiting one of the households where FELICA supports 5 children, the following story is told:-
Guinea has been suffering from poor governance, widespread corruption and a catastrophic economic situation brought about by the autocratic, long-serving president General Conte who died in December 2008. The whole region is unstable with civil unrest in Ivory Coast, Liberia, Togo and Guinea-Bissau. Inflation is high and prices keep going up while salaries remain low in a context of massive unemployment.
Supporting FELICA is a good investment. The organisation does "simple" things like getting every orphan to school and ensuring nutrition, psychosocial and medical care, which is often not innovative and fancy enough for a donor to finance. FELICA also plays an important role in AIDS prevention and family planning in young women, socio-professional development of orphans and income generating projects for foster families. Dr. Cathy is a very compassionate and intelligent woman who does not accept that poverty numbs her environment to an extent in which unwanted children are left to die.