Community Initiatives

Biojemmss carries out community-based initiatives across its locations of operation, with the majority currently being delivered from our Rukungiri Branch. We have started delivering some from our Kanyinya Branch and intend to relocate all our activities to this location once we have built the needed facilities

These initiatives are designed to strengthen families, in turn preventing abuse and keeping children at home wherever possible. This avoids children residing on the street and entering residential provisions where their risk of abuse often increases, especially as many sub-standard homes still operate.

Prison Ministry

Biojemmss provides hampers for children under the age of five who have been incarcerated because their mothers are serving prison sentences. We visit the mothers once a week to provide emotional support and provide hampers once a month which contain essential items including bathing soap and powdered milk. When parents are arrested, they can often also leave young children unsupervised at home. Biojemmss undertakes home visits when needed to locate these children and alert the local authorities and relevant community members, sometimes providing material assistance. Biojemmss attends local meetings where children at risk are discussed and continue to look for opportunities to work with partners to strengthen structures and policies surrounding children. We are exploring options around providing legal aid to strengthen this work.

Retracing and Rehabilitating

Fondly known in Uganda as “retracing and rehabilitating”, Biojemmss works with street children to trace family members and provides assistance to rehabilitate them back home wherever possible. This can sometimes include working with the community to locate wider family who are willing to look after the child whilst we support with school fees and materials. Biojemmss Rukungiri does provide crisis short-term accommodation to these children as this process is completed.

Children’s Camps

Biojemmss also runs annual camps in Rukungiri for children aged five to fourteen. We partner with local churches and minister to hundreds of children and their families during the January camp. This has helped us build great relationships with the community and meet other needs as they arise. We have seen hundreds of children commit their lives to God as a result of these camps. Our desire is to see more saved and to disciple these children as they begin their journeys of faith. Biojemmss has recently expanded this work to host children’s conferences in other rural churches, and help them to strengthen existing children’s ministries.


Family Strengthening

All our interventions are designed to try and strengthen families. We also carry out a specific programme to identify children who are residing in families and in situations of significant risk. We work with the family and the community to create positive solutions to minimise this risk. From Buyanja to Bwanbara, Biojemmss is currently supporting over 60 families in the most rural areas of Uganda with intensive input designed to get children out of abuse and exploitation, and into freedom for them and their entire families. Biojemmss works with the most vulnerable children in the district, and has beneficiaries spanning over 50% of the administrative area. All of these children are now in school whilst their parents receive support and training from our qualified staff. 

Our plan is always to Rescue children, Restore them and their families, and Release them into long-term freedom and independence. For us, this looks like children being safe from abuse and exploitation within families, and where their caregivers are able to provide them with their basic needs.

Basic Needs: Emergency Hampers

Biojemmss delivers up to 10 hampers per week to children and their families in crisis. Our aim is to alleviate the suffering of children and families in extreme hardship, and also to prevent families and children from having to resort to other desperate measures to meet basic needs. These include child labour, abandonment, neglect, or other forms of child exploitation. We recently launched an emergency appeal to raise enough money to ship thousands of good quality children's clothes and other items to the field. These are now distributed within the hampers to the families who need them most. Each hamper varies according to need but includes items such as soap, toothpaste, sanitary pads, flour, sugar, washing powder, baby clothes, bedding and children's clothes. The majority of children we have supported are from households where parents have died, been incarcerated, are struggling with parental disability, or being evicted due to bank loans.  

Skilling: Educational Free Workshops

Biojemmss’ main beneficiaries are children, and specifically those children who are in pain or suffering.  We believe that the best help for them is a loving and safe home where their basic needs are met. Sometimes, parents or caregivers might need a little help to make their home a safe place. Biojemmss supports them through a range of initiatives including safety planning, counselling, and workshops on topics such as parenting, domestic violence and substance misuse. We also use these workshops to empower caregivers such as training them in business skills and helping them to set up peer saving groups to actively start saving towards theirs and their children’s future.

Skilling: Sustainable-livelihood Initiatives

One of the ways in which we achieve the second part of our goal is to help families start a small livestock business. We give them training, help them to get their premises ready, and then give them a pair of animals that they will go on to breed and sell. This enables them to have a source of income, and make safe choices for their children. Whilst they are being prepared for this initiative, Biojemmss does remove children from existing abusive circumstances, and paying short-term for their school fees until their caregivers are back on their feet. There are hundreds of children benefiting from our school fees support.

Foster Families

“It takes a village to raise a child” African Proverb

One of the little known facts about Biojemmss is that as part of our family-strengthening work we create foster placements. When children are experiencing abuse, we first work with their family and local officials to create safety plans utilising wider family, neighbours and friends. Sometimes though children are unable to stay close to home, and in these circumstances Biojemmss finds and creates foster placements to keep them safe, keep them in families, and also keep them in their local community. We currently have two children in foster placements, one with a local church pastor. There are many individuals that would want to step into such circumstances and help, rather than children go into institutions, but are also experiencing financial constraints and need some support. These arrangements often work best for the child, for the family, and for the community who are often passionate about their own. Biojemmss provides a holistic package of support to help these families.

Education: Safeguarding Training

Biojemmss delivers child protection training to community partners. This is part of our strategy to improve the standard of care being provided to children across the board. It especially encourages partnership working to increase the number of safe spaces for children, and in turn to help tackle child abuse.