Our Story

The foundation is founded by the couple John Ceesay and Jorinde Bijl. On their first date, in the Spring of 2015, they already spoke about their dream for the future; to start up a project four children and youths.


Since that first date they have been through a lot together and lived in many different places, like Malta and the South of Italy. Here they lived among the West-African community. They experienced up close how hard life is for the youngsters who travel from countries like The Gambia, Senegal and Sierra Leone to build up a living in Europe.

Desperation

In their home country the youth has very few opportunities to develop themselves and create a live for themselves. This forces many to undertake the desperate journey across the African continent. From Libya they try to reach Europe. Those who survive the journey over land, crammed together in the back of a truck through the scorching desert, await the crossing of the Mediterranean Sea in small boats. The youngsters who are saved in time from dehydration and drowning are brought to land in Malta, Greece, or Italy. Here they are far from welcome. They come across exploitation and discrimination. In the search of a better life, they find themselves in harsh conditions. Many end up on the streets, where they come into contact with drugs and prostitution.  

John and Jorinde helped where they could and invited many into their family home for a joint meal. During this meetings they gave advice about the bureaucratic system in Europe. Together with the youth they searched for possibilities to improve their lives in Europe.

“Their options are so limited,” Jorinde explains, “we knew, if we really want to help the African youth, we have to prevent them from taking the back-way journey to Europe.”  

Their dream for the future is now a reality. With their foundation John and Jorinde support projects that provide children and youth with opportunities to build up their lives in their home country.