Any child rich or poor, privileged or underprivileged has strengths. It is our responsibility as parents, teachers and mentors to identify their needs and help them in their pursuit of
A gesture of kindness can be as simple as donating a cup of seeds to the hungry and one will be surprised how many people will be fed by that cup.
History and Biography
The BNJ Foundation was established in 2010 in Fairfax, Virginia, in the name of Jean Ncharre, a school teacher. He and his wife Ngamchera Abiba changed the way education, farming, and health/wellness is perceived today in the most rural areas in Cameroon, Africa. They promoted learning and empowered and motivated others in the pursuit of goals to learn and excel. The foundation is dedicated to serve those in need in the most remote areas and during times of emergency.
Mr. Jean Ncharre was born 1936 in Foumban and raised as a single child by his grandmother. His mother passed away at a very young age and his dad left home while he was still a young child. He went to high school in a town called Kongsamba, Cameroon and became a teacher in 1955 at the age of 19 years old in a town called Eseka, Cameroon. He had passion for people and helping them reach their full potential. He believed education was the way of the future and for him to make an impact on the future of students and of the town. After teaching in Meiganga, Cameroon for just a couple of years, he returned to his birthplace where he became the principal of the elementary school at the military base in Koutaba, Cameroon.
Prior to his arrival, no child in the village spoke French or went to school. Principal Ncharre raised 16 biological children and adopted hundreds of children from the village who did not have a possibility to go to school. He would teach students at school and at his home. Although never attending medical school, he read several medical books and made children aware of tropical diseases and STDs. He built a hospital named “Dispensary Jean Ncharre”, which today helps countless of villagers with minor illnesses. His salary of $15.00 monthly did not stop him from achieving his dream. He would collect the books and pass them from one child to the next. He cherished the books like gold. His ability to look at children and assess their developmental need was unique. After 30 years of teaching and serving as a principal at Koutaba Elementary School, the results of his effort are highly visible. Countless of children who he taught from all over went on to become lawyers, medical doctors, dentists, pharmacists, teachers, administrators, and military officers in the army….etc.
Mr. Ncharre was also an artist and created countless of art pieces that are displayed all over the country today. Two of his most memorable pieces of art are: 1) the statue of a remarkable soldier that is used presently as a monument in front of the school and a symbol for heroism for the military college in Cameroon and 2) the statue of the birth of Jesus and the disciples displayed in front of the Catholic Church in Koutaba, Cameroon. He also served as the Mayor of the town and help modernized multiple villages. Even during economic adversity, his efforts led to building roads and deep wells, and because he was well-respected, many villagers joined together with him and would go to work with their bare hands. The well brought clean running water to the villages. His main purpose throughout life remained education and he would always fight to get schools built where there were no schools. Mayor Ncharre believed education was the noblest profession and the foundation of our future leaders.
Mr. Ncharre retired as a mayor receiving countless awards and decorations. Most described Mr. Ncharre as humble and respectful; a teacher, counselor, and passionate learner able to handle multiple demands, shifting priorities and able to step aside himself and let other grow. His fundamental belief was that all people regardless of color, religious background can live in harmony. It was proven by him being a catholic, his wife Muslim and evangelic children living peacefully. He was offered multiple positions to become a politician, in which he declined and continued his work as an educator. He leaves a legacy that we all can assume responsibility of creating a successful future by providing direction, guidance and priorities to our children. We cannot forget the support of Mrs. Ngamchera Bouda to her husband; this includes long days of work on the farm to help feed the family and many villagers. She would get up in the morning around 4am and wake all children to go to farm before they go to school. She also received awards and recognitions for advancing the farming in the town.