The J9 Foundation's mission is to inspire a global movement of entrepreneurs who utilize their God-given gifts to improve their own lives and the lives of others.

We call them compassionate entrepreneurs.


Announcing: THE J9 ACADEMY 

We need your help as we launch the first business magnet school in all of East Africa - maybe even all of Africa! We need to raise $80,000 in the next three months to make this dream a reality. Please read on!


From Michael and Sandy Nyenhuis

To: Friends of The J9 Foundation:


Five years ago our world turned upside down when our son, Jacob, died in a car accident. We have survived this incredible loss by the grace and mercy of God and the support of our friends and family.


A big part of our recovery has been your support of our work to bring into reality Jacob’s vision for his foundation, The J9 Foundation.


With your help, in the past four years we have trained and supported young entrepreneurs in western Kenya to launch and grow businesses that have allowed them to improve their own lives, the lives of their families and the lives of others in the community.  


As we cross this difficult milestone this month, we are ready to launch the next major effort of the The J9 Foundation: the J9 Academy, a private school in Kenya.


The Academy, scheduled to open next year, will be the first “business magnet” school in all of East Africa – and maybe all of Africa. Patterned after the magnet school concept in the United States, the Academy will offer a full curriculum and in addition will include a special emphasis on business and entrepreneurship. The rationale is this: the young entrepreneurs we worked with are limited in their vision and understanding of growing, formal businesses. That is not surprising in that they come from very poor villages. We recognize the need to introduce young people to fundamental business concepts and realities at an earlier age, even at the primary school level.  At the J9 Academy, that is what we will do.


The Academy will open in2012 as a boarding school for grades 4, 5 and 6. Each consecutive year, grades will be added, until we host students in all primary and secondary (high school) levels. Our business model is to attract students whose families will pay for their education while providing scholarships to children from very poor families who cannot. A full description of the Academy and our plans can be found in the J9 Academy Guiding Principles, business plan and financial documents. The business plan explains the rationale for the school, including why the economic, academic and security concerns in Kenya have made boarding schools the norm. Please send us an email if you would like to see these documents.


Our Kenyan partners have donated the land for the Academy and provided funds for architects and others who have planned the facilities and curriculum. They have also committed another $7,000 in cash. We need $120,000 to construct the initial facilities, provide scholarships to 20 students and cover initial operating costs. We have raised almost $40,000 already.


Our goal is to raise the remaining $80,000 in the next three months to allow us to open the Academy in 2012.  


Jacob always thought big. He never let a big dream intimidate him. Neither will we. The J9 Academy will be a permanent legacy honoring Jacob and his vision of using business to benefit others, and it will propel generations of Africans into successful businesses that will transform their society and economy.


Please consider how you might support this effort. Here are ways you can offer your financial support:


Academic Building:


$23,316 will fund the initial academic building with three classrooms, or

$8,772 will fund one of the classrooms




$18,948 will fund the dormitory for 100 students, or

$1,894.80 will fund dormitory space for 10 students, or

$189.48 will fund dormitory space for 1 student


Dining Hall:


$16,843 will fund the fully-equipped dining hall




$17,053 will fund scholarships (covering annual tuition and boarding) for 20 students, or

$853 will fund an annual tuition and boarding scholarship for one student


Undesignated Gifts:


Undesignated gifts of any amount will be applied where most needed.  


Please note that all of your gifts to The J9 Foundation for the Academy are tax deductible and will directly fund the J9 Academy and its operations. The J9 Foundation itself is led by volunteers. It pays no salaries here in the U.S. and its small, basic operating costs are covered by the foundation’s board of directors. You can give online here at the website or send a check to:


The J9 Foundation

600 Union St.

Brunswick, GA 31520


If you have any questions or want to talk further about the Academy and how you might participate, please let us know.


With grateful hearts,


Michael and Sandy   


Here is the power of Compassionate Entrepreneurship ...

Stories from the J9 Entrepreneurs in Kenya

In Business:
Aggrey Odhiambo Dundee, six months ago a lone fisherman, now employs  
seven people to catch, package, ship and sell 250 kilograms of Lake  
Victoria fish each week. He exports to a far-off city, bringing much  
needed cash into his home area.

In Compassion:
Stephen Otieno Agero, a poultry farmer, rescued an orphan boy from a  
life without hope. The boy now lives with Stephen and his family in  
their small rented village home, attends school (Stephen pays the  
fees) and learns the value of work by helping on the poultry farm.

In Changed Lives:
In five months, Maurice Odour Wangoma has expanded his retail shop,  
quadrupled his income, built a kitchen on his small, rural home,  
acquired legal title to his 2 1/2-acre family land, bought additional  
cows and sent his daughter to a better school. His new baby, expected  
in September, will enter the world in much improved circumstances.

These are early results from the J9 Young Entrepreneurs Program Class  
of 2008 in Bondo District, one of the poorest regions of Kenya; with  
the help of The J9 Foundation, the entrepreneurs launched or began to   
expand their businesses in the past six months.

J9 Profile

Making Beautiful Furniture 
Francis Odhiambo Otieno’s shop in the Ajigo marketplace in Kenya is named Maridadi Furnishers. Maridadi is a Swahili word that means “beautiful.” One look in his shop and it becomes clear the furniture Francis makes is beautiful.Read more

Buy stuff at the new J9 Shop!

Shop for shirts and mugs at the new J9 Shop.Click here to enter the shop. All items are emblazoned with The J9 Foundation logo.

We're on Facebook!

Oh yeah! We're down! (Or for those of you from the '60s, "We're hip!"). The J9 Foundation is now on Facebook. If you have a facebook account, become a "fan" of the foundation. To find our page, simply enter "The J9 Foundation" in the search box on your profile page.

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Donate Now
Become a compassionate entrepreneur yourself by investing in The J9 Foundation's work. Learn how.




Our Founder
Meet The J9 Foundation's founder, Jacob J Nyenhuis. In his short life he taught us what it meant to combine the spirit of an entrepreneur with a heart of compassion.More about Jacob

Visit the memorial website honoring Jacob.

What is  "Compassionate Entrepreneurship"
A compassionate entrepreneur utilizes his/her God-given gifts to improve their own lives and the lives of others. The three principles of compassionate entrepreneurship are: Dream, Act and Serve.Learn more.

Our Theme
Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord his God. -- Psalm 146:5