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About Tatarai Trust

The Tatarai Trust has a core of six people who are determined to make life better for the fifty residents of the Romanian home. We have committed to lifelong support and will not break faith with them.

The connection began back in 1991, when the fall of Communist dictator Nicolai Ceaucesu allowed the western world to see, for the first time, how the lives of vulnerable children had been blighted by neglect and abuse. In common with many others, representatives of the Doncaster based Hesley Group of Schools travelled to Bucharest to see how they could help. Hesley schools specialised in the care of emotionally disturbed children and so they had special skills to offer. MD and founder Steve Lloyd and his colleague Malcolm Davies were put in contact with Tatarai, set in remote countryside 30 kilometres from the capital, and set about organising assistance.

They raised support back home and in September of that year, a convoy set off from Doncaster with clothes, paint and plumbing. Over the following years, there have been many changes and many faces at Tatarai. The Hesley Foundation (the charitable arm of the schools group) has provided financial assistance with major projects - a new laundry, a invaluable new building with bedrooms and a social area. Since 1... however, it has moved on to other projects. The Tatarai Trust was formed in ??. To work solely with the vulnerable residents of the continuing original home.


On board one of the first convoy buses was Andrea Pickup. Andrea was so moved by what she saw, and by the people she met, that she gave up her job at home to devote her time to fundraising and working for Tatarai children. Over the years she has run three charity shops, given innumerable talks and organised fund-raising events. And every year she has, at her own expense, travelled several times to Tatarai. She is known to all there - who have no parents of their own - as Mama Andrea. She is the founder of the Tatarai Trust.

In 1991 Mike Gray was a headmaster at one of the Hesley schools. He is now a trustee of the Tatarai Trust, and a regular visitor to Romania.

Fiona Greig was a producer with Yorkshire Television and in 1991 was in Romania making a film about the fall of the Communist regime. By chance she met the Hesley team and that meeting resulted in a film following the first convoy and the subsequent work over several more years. She, like Andrea, has formed a continuing attachment to the Tatarai. She is now Chair of the Tatarai Trust.

Geoff Druett, journalist and TV presenter, was the reporter on that first film. His connection with Tatarai has moved from the professional to the personal and he was one of the founding trustees of the Tatarai Trust.

Marilyn Blenkinsop is Andrea's sister and has been working with and for Tatarai for six years. A care worker in the UK, she is beloved of the staff and residents of the Romanian home and visits at least twice a year.

Richard Evans became involved with Tatarai five years ago. He runs an engineering firm in Doncaster, and Tatarai has now become an important part of his life. He is a regular visitor and supporter and has done much to improve life for the residents.
Tatarai Group Photo

Tatarai Residents

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