Johari 2015 / by Evey Sekajipo

Once a week, mentors are able to enter elementary schools and have lunch discussions with small groups of young girls. These girls are shushed, quieted, and dismissed throughout their day, and we get to come into their schools and create a space where they are valued, listened to, and encourage. We have the honor of creating a place where they can know their importance. We call this ministry Johari, which is Swahili for “gems” or “something of value.” Although we only meet for half an hour once a week, the girls seem to really cherish the short time.
Johari is designed to support young elementary girls and empower them to be leaders in their schools and families.  In that short thirty minutes, we aim to empower, motivate, educate, foster leadership, and communicate value to the girls. This is a space where they are free to express themselves and encourage each other in their own unique, creative ways.

Johari has my heart because Jesus is clearly the one running it. The time is altogether too short for deep discussion, but that does not seem to matter. Anything and everything is talked about, and each child seems brighter for it. I have witnessed them grow in joy, share encouragement, be free in vulnerability, and learn to open up about their troubles. These precious gems remind me that we are all Johari, we are all something of value.