Herman Hamer OVC Center in Koka, Ethiopia

Support for orphans

Florensis has two production companies in the horticultural site near Koka, 95 km south of Addis Ababa. Koka has many orphans, mainly due to the death of their parents from AIDS or children are simply are left behind in the village. Without help, these children have very little means of survival. At the request of the community, three cutting production companies (Dümmen Orange, Syngenta Flowers and Florensis) established a day-care centre for these children in 2007. This facility is run by the local NGO ‘SAEDO’ (Social And Environmental Development Organization), while the three companies mentioned before are the main sponsors and members of its board of directors.

The centre

In 2017, Florensis built the current building and facilities, which were funded with a donation from the Hamer family to mark the 75th anniversary of Florensis in 2016. This has had a major impact on the project which is now caring for 135 children ranging in age from 4 to 15. The centre was officially opened by the Hamer family on 1 October 2018 when it also received its current name: The Herman Hamer OVC Center, with OVC standing for 'Orphans and Vulnerable Children'.


The children live with their foster family in Koka who are extended family members whenever possible. The centre is not an orphanage and it’s important for the children to be able to grow up as much as possible within a family structure. During the day, when their foster parents are at work, the children stay at the OVC Center. Here, they receive breakfast and lunch, medical care, clothing, school supplies, personal hygiene care, and supplemental training. The children attend a nearby primary school during the morning or afternoon and receive tutoring the rest of the day. Without this centre, these children would simply be abandoned. This way we give them more of an opportunity for a better future.


In 2018 together with the Women empowerment group, an injera bakery was built at the OVC center. This bakery is now running at full speed and ten women daily bake 800 injeras (pancake-like bread) for Florensis and for the OVC children. This way these women earn an extra income. Florensis appointed a supervisor who guides the women and supervises the injera quality, material purchase and good stock management. The aim is to further expand the customer base, and therefore also the group of women.

As recent investment from donations, we have placed chimneys so that the smoke from the ovens no longer enters the bakery, but goes outside. Florensis helped with the organization and at short notice there will be an upgrade of the facilities, financed by a group of Florensis customers.




Opening party, 1 October 2018


Happy new year celebration, January 2018


Old playground, 2019


Building painted and banana trees planted, 2019


Improvements Injera bakery, August 2020


Tutoring class, April 2021


Special donation day with shirts and school supplies, August 2021

Sustainable development goals

With this project we contribute to SDG goal 3 ‘Good health and well-being’ and goal 4 ‘Quality education’ , two of the six Sustainable Development Goals that we selected to focus on in our sustainability policy.


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