Cosmas Rongoti’s personal experience motivated him to establish Shanduko Yehupenyu Trust. He says he grew up being abused by his stepmother. The main aim of the Trust is to make people realise childrens rights and responsibilities.
Rongoti was born and bred Murehwa. After completing his Ordinary Level, he came to Harare. Rongoti saw how children were suffering in Epworth community.
The situation in the community motivated him to help the children. He didnt like to see these children going down the same road he walked in.
In 2001 Rongoti was linked to Family Support Trust under Harare Hospital where he underwent training in dealing with children who had been sexually abused.
He was trained as a community focal person. After the training, he started working with children who were sexually abused, referring them to Family Support Trust clinic.
In 2002, he went for training with Deseret International, an organisation which promotes behavioural change in light of the HIV and Aids pandemic and child protection. After his training, Shanduko Yehupenyu Trust was established in 2002.
More than 300 children have since benefitted from the project.
Sesta Chivhundu confirmed that Rongoti is helping the community in Epworth. Rongoti helped Chivhundu by paying school fees for her child.
Currently the child is in form two. Chivhundu said she failed to pay fees for her child because she was not working. She is pleased by the good work being done by Rongoti.
Rongoti also looks after people in the community. The area has water shortage challenges and he organised for the community to have wells. He even provided the community with buckets with which to fetch water and for laundry.
He provides education to orphans and vulnerable children. He is even teaching the society on how best they can look after these children.
Dorcas Rongoti also confirmed that she got help from Cosmas. He has been paying school fees for her child since the child was in Grade One. The child is currently in form 1.
Shanduko Trust boasts of the following achievements:
More than 50 children have finished their OrdinaryLevels under the ambit of Shanduko Yehupenyu Trust.
Seven girls are employed
They have managed to dig wells in the community.
They built toilets for the Epworth community.
Shanduko Trust is teaching the community about childrens rights and responsibilities. The Trust is also uniting children with their extended families.
Shanduko is giving ideas to many youths on how to start incoming generating projects. Among other things they are providing stationery, school fees, soaps and buckets to improve hygiene.
Psycho-support is being offered to the community whereby Shanduko provides one-on-one counselling to the children and allowing them a platform to open up and speak out on any cases of abuse physical, emotional or sexual.
Shanduko has financially helped the following primary schools in Epworth:
80% of the funding comes from the Trusts coffers and the remaining from well wishers.
Rongoti is a qualified Community Development facilitator, he holds a certificate from Kwazulu Natal University.