As a young child, Joel was forced to work so he could pay his school fees, but he was unable to pursue secondary education and dropped out. He was initially taken to an abusive children’s home, but was eventually rescued by Biojemmss and able to continue his education. He now works at Biojemmss as a qualified social worker, and is married with a family.

“I want to glorify the living God for what he has done in my life. God is good all the time and has worked in my life right from an unbearable situation up to where I am now.

“I used to carry heavy goods, fetch water and cut grass to earn money to pay for my primary school fees. I was too young for such work. When I completed primary level, the situation became worse because secondary fees are higher than primary fees. I could not earn enough to cover it, so my schooling stopped.

“My cousin Andy, whom I later stayed with at Biojemmss, came and took me to a ‘rescue’ home, where I joined the senior one class. I thought my prayers had been answered, but after a short time things became very bad. We were all subjected to hard labour and the person in charge used to do unthinkable things.

“We started to pray to God and seek his intervention. God answered our prayers and there came a lady called Siân, who saw our problems. God used her and started another home called Biojemmss.

“In this home, we started a new life because we had hope – something we had lost long before this – and life finally became meaningful again. We were able to get everything we needed, such as school fees and good meals, but the most important thing was that we felt loved and valued.

“I thank God for the gift of life, for his love, care, provision and protection, and for what he has seen me through. God is so good. He has provided for my education right from senior one to senior six. With his help, I achieved good A-level grades and am soon to complete my university degree.

“One thing I have learnt is that I live by his grace; everything I have is because of His grace. I will never take him for granted. I thank God for everyone who has stood with us.”

“Let me take this opportunity to testify to the great things the Almighty God has done throughout my life, because the devil can be overcome through our testimony. First and foremost, I thank God for the gift of life and his grace towards me. Whatever I have achieved is by his grace.

“Despite the challenges, hardships and difficult situations of the past, I know that he has covered me through the blood of Jesus. I thank God for Biojemmss, which he has used to change and save children’s lives in Uganda so they can reach their bright futures, just as he used the prophet Jeremiah to save the people of Judah when God told him that ‘my word will pass through your mouth to save these people’.

“It’s because of Biojemmss that I am what I am today. I joined Biojemmss in senior one, aged 14, when no one could afford to contribute towards my school fees. God used Biojemmss to pay for everything: accommodation, food, medicine, clothes and books. Biojemmss supported me a lot, to the extent that I cannot mention everything.

“I studied from senior one up to university and I got my bachelor’s degree in social work and social administration at the age of 26. Now I am a Biojemmss staff member and am very happy to be working here. We aim to push it to another level through extending our services to children at risk.

“I am excited about my work because I can now give some support to my family. Glory be to the Almighty God. I pray that God will make me a source of blessing and provision for the needy in the community.”