JOBS & JOB TRAINING
WOMEN & CHILDREN
A message from James Kirima, Founder + Director
My name is James Kirima, I am the Founder and Director of Boresha Jamii in Tanzania. I’m originally from Musoma, Tanzania – a small town nearby Lake Victoria. I was born and raised in a family of seven siblings, I remember how my parents worked hard to support us to access health services and pay for schools fees. I remember when I was young that some of my friends were not able to access health services and were not able to finish their studies because of a lack of financial resources. I know how it feels when someone you love is sick and cannot have access to medication, or when you have an academic dream, but you can’t achieve it because of your family’s finances. These experiences have pushed me to action, and to realize my dream of supporting poor families with access to health services. We do this by establishing a project which provides and creates awareness in the community of the importance of accessing affordable family health insurance cards. We are also aiming to begin a project which helps children access education and acquire vocational skill – something which will allow them to achieve their life dreams.
It’s my vision to contribute to my community by helping to identify social and economic development challenges and find out sustainable solutions to address them. I know that I can help people rise out of poverty through initiating projects which will help poor communities and marginalized people in my society, such as women, girls, youth, and children/orphans.
BORESHA JAMII (BJO) is a Swahili term meaning improve the community (society). Boresha Jamii is a community hub where marginalized children, women, girls and youth meet and solve their social, educational, and economic challenges so that they can achieve their life’s vision and bring about positive change in their communities.
It is an organization which is committed to creating sustainable, thriving and change-making communities in Tanzania through the creation of supportive networks, ensuring access to education for marginalized young people and the provision of livelihood opportunities for women living in rural and urban areas of Tanzania.
We have a big dream of building a Vocational Training Centre (VTC) for young people in our community, where they will have a chance to acquire vocational skills in IT, carpentry, electrical installation, tailoring, and mechanical engineering, which will help them acquire jobs to support themselves and achieve their dreams. We also aim to develop a project which will help marginalised children to access education by providing them schools uniforms, books, shoes, pen sand other school supplies.
We are building to our 3-year goals through a combination of income-generating projects. Here's what we're developing right now.
in Tanzania primary and secondary school education is technically free, and in theory all children have access to education. However, many children are still unable to attend school regularly due to a number of factors such as lack of safe transport, especially in the rural areas, and other economic factors like the cost of school supplies.
Due to the above reasons, we have decided to start a bicycle project with the purpose of giving a sustainable means of transport to vulnerable students from poor families who live far from school. As part of this program, we also provide life skills education to participating students when visiting them in schools. So far we have donated 25 bicycles to vulnerable students in two public schools of Moshi, Kilimanjaro.
Health Insurance Project
The goal of this project is to build awareness within the community on the importance of affordable health insurance, mobilize women and girls in microfinance groups and provide women financial management and business education. This allows women to manage income-generating activities, allowing them to have a sustainable income with which can be used to pay for the family health insurance cards and their children’s school fees.
This project also strengthens women’s participation in their family’s decision-making, reducing gender-based violence against women. Microfinance programs are often used to bolster women’s influence within families as well as at the marketplace. Financial independence increases a woman’s social status and decision-making power, and economic engagement is a key strategy in addressing gender inequality.
Women’s Economic Engagement
Most of the small scale business owners do not have access to loans and credit from the big financial institutions like commercial banks. This is because they do not have collateral security such as land or other assets. Due to this reason we have advised small scale business owners to form saving and lending groups so that they can access credit from the group and other microfinance institutions which give credits to small groups. Individual groups have also developed their own small savings pools so that they can have their own sustainable sources of capital and start small businesses.
Economic engagement allows people to think beyond immediate daily survival and to exercise greater control over both their resources and life choices. It enables households to make their own decisions around making investments in education, health and taking risks in order to increase their income.
We also provide training to women on business management, marketing and financial management. This allows women to engage in and manage different income generating activities which helps them to have a sustainable income and reach financial independence. We have also trained women on how to make soap for household use.