After reading a story in the New York Times Magazine about children being sold into slavery in Ghana, West Africa, John Stevens and Marci Kirk Stevens felt that they needed to do something to help. Their original plan was to start an orphanage in Ghana but after visiting many orphanages in Ghana they felt an orphanage was not the best option to care for orphaned and abandoned children. They sought advice from national and global experts, researched best practices, and determined that children should be raised in a loving family. They founded the Kaeme Foundation and joined forces with the Ghanaian Department of Social Welfare to find a permanent loving family for each child.
Ghana Staff & Partners
Our Ghana-based staff is integral to our success as they manage all in-country operations including working closely with the Department of Social Welfare year-round, providing follow-up to profiled and reunified children, supporting volunteer work, and providing other logistical assistance.
Chairman of the Board, Kaeme-Ghana: Stephen Abu, Junior
Stephen is the president of Golden Valley Foods Inc., a US-Ghanaian venture seeking to establish mechanized maize and soya bean farm in Ghana. Stephen has had many years of coordinating, representing and partnering on numerous foreign-sponsored activities and business establishments in Ghana. These include co-founding World Joy Inc. to undertake sustainable humanitarian intervention in 13 selected villages in Ghana; establishing Ghana Journeys Limited, a car rental company; and partnering with AMP Capital Partners to establish companies including Fresh Harvest Farms, Boafo Mines Limited and West African Heavy Equipment. Stephen attended Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi where he studied Land Economy for two years after which he transferred to Utah State University earning a degree in business marketing.
Chief Executive: Helena Obeng-Asamoah
Helena was a Deputy Director at the Department of Social Welfare and the Director of the Department of Children, at the Ministry of Gender Children and Social Protection. She trained as a Social Worker at the School of Social Work in Osu and the University of Ghana, Legon. She later obtained an MA in Human Resource Management at the University of Cape Coast. Helena Obeng- Asamoah is married with three children. She loves being around children and as a hobby she hosts 40 children in their home on Sunday afternoons where she and her family mentor them on how to be responsible citizens and volunteers teach them how to play the trumpet and drums.
Program Coordinator: Patricia Eshun
Patricia attended basic and secondary school education at Ajumako – Mando in the Central Region of Ghana. She trained as a professional social worker at the School of Social Work where she earned her degree. Patricia interned with the Department of Social Welfare where she also completed her national service requirement as a case worker.
Program Specialist: Margaret Adjei-Frimpong
Margaret is a psychologist who earned her degree at the University of Cape Coast and her Masters at Methodist University College. Prior to joining the Kaeme team, Margaret worked with the Ministry of Defense, Air Force Base, where she assisted military personnel deal with PTSD, stress, depression, and relationship problems. She also worked at Odogonno Senior High school as a counselor, coaching children on dealing with low self-esteem and other emotional issues.
Program Specialist II: Priscilla Ama
Priscilla is a psychologist with experience in entrepreneurship, peer counseling and women’s advocacy. She is a graduate of the University of Legon with a BA in psychology and political science. Her past work experience includes CAL Bank Limited, Royal Success, Jemis Ventures, and the Minstsry of Justice. Priscilla loves kids, travl and new challenges.
Social Development Officer: Yvonne Nkrumah
Yvonne Nkrumah is responsible for helping children living in Residential Homes for Children, families and groups of people to cope with problems they are facing to improve their lives. She received her Bachelor of Arts from the Ghana Institute of Journalism. After her degree she did her National service at the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection at the Department of Children. Yvonne in her leisure time will like to travel, cook and watch movies.
Social Worker: Comfort Boahema Anim
Comfort received her social work degree from the Kwame Nkromah University of Social and Technology in Kumasi. While still in school, Comfort worked as an intern with the Department of Social Welfare in Tema and SOS Herman Gmeiner Kumasi where she developed greater love for vulnerable children. Soon after graduation, Comfort did a year-long national service with the Lands Commission of Ghana, Tema District. The Commission allowed her to work beyond the service period until she joined Kaeme. She loves to work with children and to listen to music.
Social Worker: Dorothy Naa Ayorkor Kpobi
Dorothy is a trained social worker. She earned her Social Work degree at the Kwame Nkromah University of Science and Technology in Kumasi. She did an internship and a mandatory national service at the headquarters of the Department of Social Welfare in Accra. Dorothy’s area of emphasis at DSW was with the Care Reform Unit. Over the years, Dorothy worked as a promoter with different marketing agencies in Ghana. Dorothy likes to cook and watch movies.
Department of Social Welfare
The Ghanaian Department of Social Welfare (DSW) has stewardship over the abandoned and orphaned children of Ghana and is responsible for monitoring all orphanages in the country. The DSW is our primary governmental partner as we work to advance the wellbeing of Ghana’s orphan and vulnerable children population. We are honored to partner in this great endeavor.
US Staff & Partners
Kaeme’s executive leadership provides high-level guidance and expertise, ensuring Kaeme’s long-term success.
John is the Chairman and CEO of Silicon Valley based Heartflow, Inc. He is also the Managing Partner of Headwaters Capital Partners and Founder of Kaeme.org. He has had a distinguished career as an entrepreneur and health care professional. He was the Co-Founder and CTO of Heartport, the Co-Founder and Executive Chairman of Amp Resources, Co-Founder and Chairman of Sundrop Fuels. He has had extensive experience founding, investing and leading technology focused companies. He was an Adult and Pediatric Cardiac Surgeon at Stanford University Hospital and Lucile Salter Packard Children’s Hospital in Stanford, California. His post-graduate training was at Stanford University and The Great Ormond Street Hospital for Sick Children, London, England. He currently serves on the board of Apnicure, Heartflow, and Kaeme. He received his B.S. from the University of Utah and M.D. from the Stanford University School of Medicine. He resides in Palo Alto, California with his wife Marci, and family of 5 children.
Co-Founder, Board of Directors: Marci Kirk Stevens
Marci worked in the private sector for 15 years including 10 years as CEO of a profitable architectural design company in the Bay Area. She has assumed leadership positions focused on educational, religious and philanthropic objectives. Her involvement over the past years targeted improving the lives of both children and adults. Through her experience, Marci has realized her passion in issues relating to underprivileged children. She is presently raising 5 children including a daughter adopted from Ghana.
Board of Directors: Robert M. Daines, JD
Robert is the Pritzker Professor of Law and Business and Co-Director of the Rock Center on Corporate Governance at Stanford. His research focuses on the intersection between law and finance, including CEO pay, corporate governance, mergers and acquisitions, mandatory disclosure regulations, IPOs, shareholder voting and takeover defenses. Before entering academia, he was an investment banker at Goldman Sachs, where he advised firms on bank and bond financings. He is also Professor of Finance (by courtesy) at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He clerked for Judge Ralph K. Winter of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Prof. Daines was awarded the 2012 John Bingham Hurlbut Award for Excellence in Teaching.
Executive Director: Meredith Bergin Bailey, MPH
Meredith has worked in public health both domestically and abroad on issues ranging from tobacco cessation to elimination of hepatitis B within the Asian/Pacific Islander population. She brings experience in project management, health education, evaluation, and grant writing to the Kaeme team. Her educational background includes a BS in Microbiology and a Masters in Public Health.
Treasurer: Jeffrey Kirk
Jeff has served for over 30 years in leadership capacities in both finance and human resources. He has worked throughout the United States and has spent many years living and working abroad in both Latin America and Europe for Marriott International. He is currently involved in venture capital, mentoring and supporting growing companies in a variety of roles. He received his B.A. in Finance from the University of Utah and MBA from Utah State University.