"I was rescued for a purpose. I know that God wants me to be his hands and feet to show his goodness in this broken world.” - Bosco
“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” - Matthew 28v18-20
In Mat 28:18-20 Jesus sent his disciples all over the world to make disciples of all nations. The end goal of all our actions is to see people follow Christ, and reach their God given potential physically and spiritually. We currently have the following strategic objectives:
Strengthen discipleship interventions in the communities of Ciya, Bubanza and Murwi, Cibitoke.
Support the communities of Ciya, Bubanza and Murwi, Cibitoke in increasing agricultural production and microenterprise.
Promote good health, good hygiene practices within the beneficiary communities.
Support young people in school to continue their schooling.
Strengthen evangelization and discipleship in schools and universities.
Strengthen partnership with local churches.
Strengthen the managerial capacities of ICJ to effectively carry out the work.
ICJ was founded by Jean Bosco Mutebutsi, a young man who lost both parents and siblings in the 1993 civil war aged 7. He knows first hand what it’s like live through trauma and be an orphan, where one can often have a inner sense of rejection, as well as experiencing loneliness, hopelessness, lack of peace, and having thoughts of revenge towards the killers.
But In 2002, Bosco met with God and gave his life to Christ, where his whole story changed! He felt God as a loving father and that he cares for his future. Bosco says, “I believe that I was rescued for a purpose. I know that God wants me to be his hands and feet to show his goodness in this broken world.”
He then went on to start ICJ in 2012 (formally J-Life) which targets vulnerable and marginalised communities with the gospel of Christ, and discipleship in collaboration with local churches. As target populations are destitute, we support them in a process of empowerment and self-management through the promotion of local activities such as agriculture and livestock management, the improvement of living conditions (housing, health) as well as the schooling of children in order to get these communities out of the vicious circle of poverty. We also intervene in high schools and universities to promote discipleship and leadership based on biblical principles.
I am Burundian, single, and have a bachelor's degree in economic sciences and management. I am accounting for the ICJ Foundation. I love God and creation.
Rudigi Jean de Dieu
I am Jean de Dieu, I am 37 years old. I am a trained nurse. I am married with 1 child. I was born and raised in Ciya-Bubanza. I am serving as a Field Worker - Ciya
I am Diomède Nkunzimana. I am married to Dieudonnée Karikera and we have one Son. I work at ICJ Foundation as responsible of Bible League and Discipleship Training program.
I am Anicet. I am 27 years old. I am a trained agronomist. I was born in Cibitoke province, Mabayi-commune. I am currently serving withing ICJ as Field Worker in Ndava-community
I am Burundian, married and father of three children. I have a bachelor's degree in educational sciences - specialising in English language and literature. I work for the ICJ foundation as an administrative and Communications manager.
I am Elias, I am 35 years old. I am married and have 6 children. I was born in Bubanza province-Ciya. I am a trained teachear. I am a Field Worker - Murwi
I am Burundian, married and I have 2 child. I work for the ICJ foundation as responsible of the child sponsorship program which aims to help vulnerable children in communities.
Dr. Nsabiyumva Michel
Meet the Team
Population — 11.9m
2nd poorest nation in the World
Hungriest country in the world
300,000 died in civil war
73% earn less than $1.90 a day
4.6 million people facing food insecurity.
Less than 2 people in every 100 have electricity
There is just one doctor per 34744 people.
Only one in two children go to school.
400,000 people fled the country in 2016
One in five adults has AIDs.
Urban/Rural populations — 13% / 87%
Ethnicity: Hutu 85%, Tutsi 14%, Batwa (‘Pygmy’) 1%
Life expectancy 61.6 years
Median age— 17 years
Child malnutrition (under 5) 54%
*SOURCES: Worldometers.info / UN Development programme / MinorityRights.org / Worldpopulationreview.com / World Bank / CIA
Batwa, (Pygmies) are a marginalised and mostly unreached indigenous tribe in Burundi. Originally, they lived in the forests as hunter gatherers, but have since been pushed out due to protection of these delicate ecosystems.
Being displaced and having no land of their own, the Batwa have become victim to extreme poverty. They are known for making clay pots, as one means of trying to find some income to survive.
The Batwa desperately need help spiritually and physically to raise them up from being largely an underclass of society. We work with a whole community of Batwa in Murwi, Cibitoke, where we are seeing lives transformed and the cycles of poverty broken.
On 29th October 1993, a week after the President of Burundi had been assassinated. The whole country was experiencing bloodshed, and Bosco’s area was no exception. He was a timid 7-year-old, sheltering in a house with a number of his extended family. His father and elder sister fled into the swamp at 4am, having heard that the killers would shortly arrive. His Mother had swollen legs and couldn’t flee, and in any case they all thought that women and children would be left alone. But no.
At 5am, the killers arrived and tried to break down the front door. In the ensuing panic, everyone inside fled out of the back door, but people with bows and arrows were waiting there for them. Of the fifteen children, only three escaped. All five adults were killed. Bosco was one of the three to break through the cordon and make it to the bush.
After an hour, in the quiet, he crept back with his sister to try to find his Mother. There she lay, still alive, with both arms and legs hacked off. He hugged her and wept, and then begrudgingly left her to die as the killers were still nearby and she was beyond hope. He was her last born, and didn’t want to leave her side, but there was no choice. They had to try to get to the nearest church to relative safety. Meantime (and he only discovered it two weeks later), his father had also been killed.
They went to a friend’s house from the other tribe – even in the darkest moments, goodness was to be found. This man was willing to put himself in danger by trying to rescue them. He told them that the following morning the killers would burn down the forest to flush out those still hiding, so he told them to return to the bush and be ready before dawn, when he would guide them to safety.
Early the next morning, he led Bosco and Bosco’s sister through the mist. She thought he was going to betray them, so at one stage she refused to follow. Bosco had to obey her and it was a mistake, because they soon came across a gang of killers, who were resting on the verandah of a house. When the killers saw Bosco, they rushed into the house to pick up their machetes, and then chased them. Bosco and his sister literally ran for their lives, reaching the Catholic church just fifty yards in front of the fastest-running killer. Belgian priests took them in and nursed them until safe passage to the capital could be arranged.
In 2002 Bosco gave his life to Christ. He was attending a boarding school where he was discipled by mature Christians who were fellow students. Whilst still a school boy Bosco was aware of God’s calling upon his life.
He states, “I believe that I was rescued for a purpose. I know that God wants me to be his hands and feet to show his goodness in this broken world.”
After graduating from secondary school, Bosco joined Youth for Christ. It was here that God expanded and affirmed his calling.
Bosco later left Youth for Christ to found Igniting Communities for Jesus (ICJ) Burundi. ICJ reaches out to the most vulnerable communities, widows and orphans, sharing the word of Christ and providing practical support. ICJ helps construct brick homes, teaches literacy, numeracy and farming skills and helps initiate microenterprises. Through initiatives such as the porridge programme, malnourished children regain physical strength and a renewed enthusiasm for life. One mother spoke of how she witnessed her children being ‘resurrected’ after they attended the ICJ community centre at Ciya.
Bosco is also GLO’s Burundian National Director. He is married to Danella and they have two young sons, David and Joshua.