JBFC’s Girls’ Home Grows Again
Kitongo, TANZANIA – JBFC’s family continues to grow, adding six girls this year alone.
With 11-year-old Vero (Veronica) and 7-year-old Lufina joining the family this month, JBFC is now caring for 52 girls.
"JBFC hasn’t had this many new girls, since the early days,” said Chris Gates, JBFC’s Founder & CEO. "It’s exciting to have some many new faces and to know that we’re giving these girls an opportunity for a better life.”
11-year-old Veronica T is now the third Veronica on campus. She was brought to JBFC because her single father was unable to provide for her basic needs.
7-year-old Lufina was removed from her home by Tanzanian social welfare officials, because her mother is mentally disabled and was unable to take care of her. Lufina loves soccer and dancing. She’s attending the first grade at Joseph & Mary.
JBFC has admitted six new girls this year alone. JBFC’s campus includes six dorms with a capacity of 48 girls. Only 42 girls are currently living on JBFC’s campus in Kitongo. JBFC has transitioned nine girls off campus. Eight girls graduated last December and moved into a transitional house off campus in the city of Mwanza, about 45 minutes away.
The older girls are learning to live on their own, under the guidance of a matron, while they await placement in pre-university and training colleges. With the older girls living in the city, JBFC has more room to continue to provide a safe haven for girls in need.
Unfortunately in July, Tanzanian social welfare officials did remove a girl from JBFC’s care. Typically, JBFC only receives girls who have no other possible placements. But the girl was actually on track to be adopted by a missionary family living in Tanzania.
"This is very unusual that a girl would be placed with us, who is in the process of adoption,” said Gates. "This young girl was mistakenly placed with us, but the good news is we got to meet the adoptive family and they seem like they will provide a great home for her.”
JBFC expects to continue to accept vulnerable girls until we reach capacity, which is 46 girls in residence on the Kitongo campus. JBFC keeps two beds open for short-term, emergency placements.
JBFC’s girls’ home provides refuge for girls who were once abandoned, abused or neglected. Tanzania has approximately one million orphans.
About JBFC: JBFC was founded by Chris Gates in 2006, named for his grandmother, Janada L. Batchelor, who first introduced him to Tanzania. JBFC administers a home for abandoned and abused girls, primary and secondary schools, a rural health clinic, and a farm for economic development on a 70-acre campus in a rural village just outside of Tanzania’s second largest city. It is a federally recognized 501c3 committed to alleviating extreme rural poverty in East Africa.