Our Story

Official Charity Registration

Ecologia Youth Trust is officially registered as a Scottish Charity, working with Kitezh Children’s Community in Russia to build two foster communities and facilitate several international youth exchanges.

September 1995

First Partner

Partnered with the Sathirakoses-Nagapradeepa Foundation (SNF) in Thailand on a 3-year project to restore livelihoods and empower devastated communities of traumatised and marginalised migrant workers and their families devastated by the 2004 tsunami.


New Partner in Georgia

Partnered briefly with Braveheart Georgia to help give life-saving medical treatment to a young disabled boy, who has grown to become an Ambassador for disabled people in Georgina and a professional wheelchair basketball player.


Second project in Thailand

Delivered a second 3-year project with the Sathirakoses-Nagapradeepa Foundation (SNF) to foster human rights for Burmese migrants and their families living and working in Thailand.


New Project in Kenya

Developed a long-term partnership with Kenyan organisation, International Peace Initiatives (IPI), to improve the future of vulnerable young people in Meru County, an area severely affected by poverty, HIV/Aids and climate change.


New Project in Uganda

Developed a long-term partnership with Ugandan organisation, Sky Is The Limit Children’s Centre, to provide quality education and support to orphaned and vulnerable children in Fort Portal, Uganda.


New Project in Myanmar

Supported the Kalyana Mitta Foundation in Myanmar to train young Buddhists in eco-farming and conservation techniques to restore Inle Lake.


Growing2gether in Scotland

Brought local Scottish project, Growing2gether, under our wing to support young people in the Scottish Highlands facing challenging circumstances to connect to their community as mentors to children in need of extra support. Due to its immense success, Growing2gether formally left Ecologia in 2022 to become an independently registered Scottish Charity.


New Project in Uganda

Initially a programme developed through our partner Sky Is The Limit, the Fruits Of Sky Youth Enterprise programme becomes a fully registered organisation in Uganda. Ecologia partnered with Fruits of Sky to deliver a 3-year project where local young entrepreneurs are supported to grow small businesses to provide job opportunities, contribute to the local economy, and skills training.


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susie Kemp

Susie has 30+ experience as a creative copywriter, editor, and proofreader, starting out as a 20-year-old copywriter in the Mad Men world of early 1990s advertising in South Africa. Ever since, she’s had a love affair with creative conceptualisation, thinking outside of the box, writing to a deadline, and being thrown in the deep end!

She took an MSc in Publishing at Edinburgh Napier University as a mature student, in 2015, and continues to keep herself busy working as a copy-editor, proofreader and copywriter in book publishing, corporate communications, and publishing project management.

Apart from her love of working with independent authors, Susie has a fondness for working in the third sector and likes to use her corporate communications and marketing experience to support projects close to her heart. She has lived and worked in the Findhorn area for 25 years, and has been involved in a number of third sector projects and organisations, and family businesses.

Working at Ecologia Youth Trust helps Susie to live in integrity with her values of supporting the next generation to be the best that they can be, and she sees it as a way to give back to Mama Africa, the beloved continent on which she was born.

Ellen Shaw

Ellen joined the Ecologia team in June 2018 as Marketing and Communications Manager. Ellen has lived in Scotland for 6 years and has worked for non-profit and charitable organisations across varied fields. She currently shares her passion for helping young people through Ecologia Youth Trust and she works as a dancer and dance teacher in her spare time.

Robyn Cooper

Robyn is the Associate Director of International Projects, having previously worked within the team as a Project Development and Marketing Officer from April 2019 until May 2021. As Associate Director, Robyn is co-leading the International side of Ecologia with Founder and Director, Liza Hollingshead, bringing a new energy into Ecologia as they look towards the future of the charity.

Liza Hollingshead

Liza is the founder of Ecologia and Director of International Projects. She was born and educated in South Africa and worked there as a high school teacher. She moved to live in the Findhorn Community in 1974. She started Ecologia in 1995 after being introduced to Dmitry Morozov, the founder of Kitezh Children’s Community in Russia, and was inspired to support the community in its mission to rescue orphaned children from institutions and give them homes, families and education in a supportive environment.

This led to projects supporting disadvantaged youth and children in South East Asia and in East Africa. TRead more about Liza’s story here.