JENGA is working closely with the local prison service to restore hope to the inmates of East Uganda’s prisons through regular visits, practical support and relational ministry. By investing time and resources into meeting the spiritual, emotional, and physical needs of imprisoned Ugandans, JENGA has found an avenue to introduce restoration and rehabilitation into the prison system.
Through offering tangible support such as soap, food, medical assistance, sleep mats, and clothing, JENGA is reaching the inmates in a way that opens doors and builds trust. Once a base relationship is established, JENGA is able to invest in the prisoners through weekly teaching and prayer alongside other established projects including Alpha and Discipleship.
Justice and Advocacy
JENGA’s aim is to empower the whole community and not just certain parts. Inspired by the Bible’s call to love all people and to seek justice for the oppressed, JENGA is partnering with local law enforcement and justice system officials to help ensure the fair treatment of peoples regardless of wealth, religion or race.
Practically speaking, JENGA represents men and women who have been unfairly arrested or mishandled in court. With partnerships representing various legal offices, JENGA’s aim is to speak into all aspects of the Criminal and Justice System of Mbale. JENGA also works closely with the local police, assisting them with both development work and continuing education in the community.
Working through an existing network of trusted churches, JENGA is reaching out to both community leaders and community members to support them in their faith. Discipling, often understood as a form of spiritual mentorship, involves providing support, encouragement, and partnership while learning to navigate the different steps of the spiritual walk through life with God.
By providing Bibles and training materials to help people learn, and conferences to train trainers, JENGA is enabling the local church and helping people to grow their faith in both depth and maturity.
Men’s Fellowship was initiated as a direct result of the success of JENGA’s Women’s Ministry. Reports of women being physically and emotionally mistreated, often under the cultural mindset of gender superiority, led JENGA to realise that men also needed significant relational investment. Although different in nature to the women’s groups, the trainings’ purpose was the same – to improve the lives of the whole family and to decrease poverty in the community.
Married men meet on a monthly basis to talk through culturally taboo issues and support each other in their daily lives. Taking the format of guided discussion, topics raised are often to do with home and family – improving household income, parenting, marriage and sex. Lessons are then introduced providing teaching on primary health care, agriculture and ‘Farming God’s Way’, entrepreneurship and savings and loans.
Oaks of Righteousness
JENGA facilitates the coming together of Mbale’s pastors to pray, enjoy fellowship, and often share a meal through the programme, Oaks of Righteousness. Church leaders and pastors struggle to meet each other outside of work and community ministry. These meetings are an incredibly effective way of building unity and cultivating a culture of encouragement and respect within different parts of the church.
Creating a stronger and more harmonious partnership between local churches is a key to building the Kingdom of God, and encourages a gathering to worship with one heart and one body is a highlight of JENGA’s ministry.
Alpha is an international discipleship programme teaching the basics of the Christian faith. JENGA is the Alpha Regional Coordinator for Eastern Uganda, training leaders and facilitating multiple Alpha courses in numerous districts. JENGA also hosts training conferences and provides Bibles and other resources to those hosting the courses.
Alongside the traditional style Alpha programmes, JENGA is also supporting Ugandan secondary schools through an additional Alpha sponsored initiative. Similar in format to the original, ‘Alpha Schools’ is training up student leaders to run uniquely designed courses specifically for students of adolescent age. Over 3000 participants have already been enrolled in the programme with genuine transformation witnessed by school leadership.