Omnibus Director Carol Crichton has launched a very special charitable Trust, in memory of the doctor who looked after her through many years of serious ill health and who had saved her life on more than one occasion.
The Anam Cara Trust (the old Gaelic term for “soul friend”) will clothe, feed, educate, shelter and counsel 1,500 Mombasa street children through a purpose built clinic and drop-in centre, fully funded by The Trust.
Carol is passionate about helping the forgotten children. She explains: “These kids live on the waste dumps of Mombasa, as children in Kenya have done for generations. They don’t make the news because this is sadly an established way of life – they are simply forgotten by the Western World.”
Carol’s Trust has big ambitions, that are already being realised less than a year after the idea came to her. “We have already purchased the land and have a Project Manager and plans ready to submit for planning permission and we aim to break ground in September with the clinic and centre due to be opened next year.”
The building will have a clinic with full time nurses and hopefully a part time doctor, all funded by the Trust. The centre will also have counselling rooms and school rooms, with training rooms on the top floor. There will also be showers and toilets, plus a kitchen to feed 250 street kids every day.
“As soon as I started talking to people about this project it really captured people’s imaginations and spurred them into action” says Carol, “I have had ladies making clothes and teddy bears to send out to the kids and the local District Nurses have promised to collect unused dressings that they can’t use but that can be shipped out.”
Even small amounts of money raised can make a huge difference. Clean toothbrushes, so that children aren’t sharing them with the rest of the family and being exposed to infections such as HIV, cost just 10p and a child can be fed for a year on just £15.
“Working on this project has really opened my eyes as to how much we can achieve with so little” says Carol, “and everyone I have spoken to has instantly come up with ways in which they can help. It’s been truly humbling.”
Carol is formally launching the Anam Cara Trust at the European Bus Forum Dinner in Manchester in June.
For further information on ways you can help or to make donations contact us.