Frequently Asked Questions

If you have a question which isn’t included here please contact us…we LOVE to talk to people about The Lion of Judah Academy and what God is doing there.  Call 772-245-8693 or email us at


2018 school fees for dorm students are $935 and $465 for ‘day scholars’ (students who live nearby the school).  Each “sponsorship” is $39 a month.  Day scholars each need one sponsorship in order to be fully sponsored.  Dorm students need two sponsorships in order to be fully sponsored.  If you choose to sponsor a dorm student, as part of the ‘check out’ process you will be given the opportunity to select one sponsorship (to partially sponsor — $39 a month) or two (to fully sponsor — $78 a month)  You may also notice that some dorm students have only one sponsorship available…that is because they are already partially sponsored.

For a day scholar, sponsorship provides yearly tuition costs and school fees at The Lion of Judah Academy, but no meals or housing.   For a dorm scholar, sponsorship provides yearly tuition costs and school fees at The Lion of Judah Academy, plus three healthy meals a day, clean water to drink, a safe place to live and sleep (in our school dorms), and basic medical care.

Yes.  Every sponsorship, no matter what the amount, is a great blessing to the students and makes a difference.  There are several ways this can be arranged…please contact us and we’ll help you.  But perhaps the easiest way for many people to do this is through the link below.  Clicking on this link will take you to a Lion of Judah Academy fundraiser where you can contribute any amount on a one-time or recurring basis, using a credit card or ACH (automatic withdrawal from your bank account).

Support a Student

Please use the “Notes” feature to tell us if you want this applied to a particular student or any other purpose.

A day scholar walks back and forth to school every day. These students live in the villages surrounding the school, and return to they own homes to eat and sleep.  A dorm scholar lives at school. Except for long school breaks, dorm scholars live on school campus. Their food, water, shelter, medical care, etc. is all received on campus.

Our primary target demographic is the children of Tanzanian church workers, who regularly serve without compensation for their work, and are therefore unable to afford the costs of providing their children a good education.

Most of these church workers are pastors of local congregations who rarely receive any salary.  Others work for church hospitals and dispensaries, while still others work for Bible colleges, or serve in other types of ministry.  Many of these faithful men and women of God are not compensated at all…others may be provided small stipends or infrequent ‘salary.’  We consider all those who are serving God as their primary calling, wherever they serve, to be “church workers.”  All of them need sponsorship in order to afford school fees.  They represent various denominational groups.

“National Missionaries” are a unique sub-group of church workers we identify because these servants of God are serving in particularly challenging situations.  They are serving as missionaries to un-churched Tanzanians, frequently in hostile areas, sometimes in areas where no schools exist.  Most of them have no alternative for education other than LOJA.

No.  About 50% of our students are receiving scholarship assistance through the school, provided by sponsorships and other resources.  Families who can afford to pay the full amount for school fees are expected to do so.

While virtually all of the church worker children attending LOJA are on scholarship, approximately one-half of the student body comes from families who are able to afford full fee.  Those families who pay full fee are, in fact, helping to subsidize some of the students who cannot afford the school fees.  LOJA is totally not for profit, so the funds which would be considered “profit” in other private schools are used to provide scholarships for other LOJA students.

If we had sufficient sponsorships to accept only students who need scholarship assistance we would do so…but we simply cannot afford to accept all the church workers’ children who apply to attend LOJA.  Perhaps one day we will be able to!

Yes.  Every family – even the most poor – is expected to contribute something toward the education of their children.

The Board of Trustees of The Lion of Judah Academy considers this an essential principle in operating the school:  all families are required to make some sort of contribution toward the education of their children.

The reasons for this are largely cultural, to help avoid an attitude of dependency and entitlement, and to build a sense of ownership, responsibility and pride.  The school staff works with each family, assessing need and ability, to reach an amount the family is able and expected to contribute.  Often it is only a few dollars…but it is expected.

Of course some are unable to afford any financial contribution.  For years a pastor with carpentry skills has been spending a week each year at the school building furniture.  Some living in the community help with cleaning or other chores.

But everyone is expected to contribute something.

Letters are welcome (see below concerning gifts).  Letters should be written in English…all of our classes are taught in English and even the youngest students are learning English skills.

Address all mail to:

The Lion of Judah Academy, Box 268, Magu, TANZANIA

IMPORTANT:  Do not write the name of your student or anyone else on the outside of your letter or package.  If a mail worker in Tanzania sees a person’s name on an international letter or package they are more apt to tack on “additional charges”. Address your letter/package as indicated above, then inside your letter or package, write the name of your student. The school only has one post box. Lion of Judah staff will pick up your student’s mail.  Once opened they will see your student’s name and deliver it directly to your student.

Yes, but please use discretion and wisdom…and consider alternatives which don’t involve mailing/shipping (see below). Your student is very blessed to have you as his/her sponsor, but many others in our student body are still waiting for their sponsor.  Children and young people all over the world are the same…when one student receives a gift, students without sponsors sometimes will respond in jealousy.

There are also various culture factors at work, and “having a sponsor” to an East African child can be a different experience than it is for a child in another culture.  There is a tendency, for the students, to understand sponsorship in a way that can begin to revolve primarily around gifts.  That is something we want to avoid at LOJA.

Therefore we suggest you offer gifts only on special occasions: birthday, graduation, etc. We have also found that giving smaller gifts to entire classes or groups of students can be another great way to bless your student, and many others. Following are some practical suggestions:

Donate a book/books to our student library in honor of your student.

        Your student will enjoy the book every week during library time.

 Donate a toy/toys to our student play room in honor of your student.

        Your student will enjoy the toy every week during play time.

 Donate school supplies for your student and his entire class.

        Keep it simple, like pencils or erasers. Students use these supplies every day in the classroom.

Also, it is often much more wise and practical to arrange to send funds to Tanzania and have a gift purchased there for your student.  We do this regularly and it not only avoids very high shipping costs and potential import taxes (which are sometimes more costly than the gift itself!), but often the gift can be more culturally appropriate and sometimes even cheaper when purchased in Tanzania.  And that doesn’t even take into account all the reliability issues inherent with international shipping.

We can help you make these arrangements…contact us.  Our Tanzanian staff can help and they are very reliable and responsible.

If you do send a gift please carefully observe the instructions under, “I’d like to write a letter to my student,” directly above.  Failing to follow those instructions are almost guaranteed to result in import taxes which may be more costly to the student than the value of the gift.

If you have additional questions about gifts, just ask!

Please notify us if you would like to receive communication from your student. We will work with the level of communication you would like to have.  We realize some international sponsorship organizations have the expectation the student will write the sponsor and the sponsor will write the student.  We do not have that expectation…we know not all sponsors want that.  But we certainly can and will help arrange it.  Do not hesitate to contact us.

We will notify you of any changes in your student’s enrollment status. If and when your student leaves the school you will be given the profile of another student who is in need of a sponsor.

That’s a programming glitch that we are having to correct one student at a time…we are in the process of getting it straightened out.  Be assured all  our students are from Tanzania!

No…they aren’t all born on the same day!  January 1 is given as their birthday for two reasons.  First, simply because we just don’t know their individual birthdates!  We neglected to ask that information when we gathered the information to be used here…as time passes we’ll get the correct dates entered!  But that leads to the second reason:  birthdates aren’t nearly as important to East Africans as they are to us.  Many students don’t even know their actual birthday!

Yes, you can.  But we need to set it up a bit differently…and it won’t be on an automatically recurring basis.  We can only set up recurring payments on a monthly basis.

You can go here:  Donate to Lion of Judah Academy

Click on “Donate to This Fundraiser” (beneath the photo on the right side).  This will provide the option to make a recurring monthly contribution to the school, or a one-time contribution.  If you are contributing to support a specific student please place the student’s name in the “Notes” section.

And you can always sponsor a student by sending a check to:  The Lion of Judah Ministries, 12523 SE Old Cypress Drive, Hobe Sound, FL  33455.  Include a note with the student’s name and 100% of the contribution will be sent to the school for the student’s school fees.

Feel free to contact us with any questions:   772-245-8693  or via email:


We have set up three main options to contribute to The Lion of Judah Academy…we hope at least one of these will be easy and convenient for you:

  • through our online fundraising platform, PureCharity
  • through the popular online site, PayPal
  • through conventional paper checks sent directly to The Lion of Judah Ministries in the U.S.

Conventional paper checks, either written by hand or sent through your bank’s bill paying process, are always welcome.  There is no service charge, bank fee, merchants fee, etc., for using checks, so 100% of the amount of your contribution goes directly to The Lion of Judah Academy for its designated purpose.  Checks should be payable to:  The Lion of Judah Ministries and mailed to 12523 SE Old Cypress Drive, Hobe Sound, FL, 33455

We realize, however, that many donors appreciate other options, especially for recurring monthly contributions.  So we also work with two other platforms which allow us to provide other donation alternatives.

PureCharity  is set up to receive credit card and ACH contributions, on either a recurring monthly basis or a one-time contribution basis.  You can use this through the Sponsor Students page or the Current Projects page.  We started using PureCharity to provide a better platform for our sponsorship program, so we also use it for other purposes.  Contributions through PureCharity are receipted by PureCharity and forwarded to Lion of Judah Ministries.  Each contribution is subject to a 5% fee, the expense for using their platform (which is especially valuable to us for the student sponsorship program, and by far the most cost effective alternative available) and the work they do processing the contribution.  PureCharity is, itself, a 501(c)(3) not for profit, with the mission of helping other charitable organizations with technology needs.

PayPal  is familiar to many of you.  You can contribute through PayPal through this link on the school blog:  Donate Through PayPal.  PayPal can also receive either recurring monthly donations or one-time donations through your credit card, and you do not need a PayPal account to use a credit card.  If you have a PayPal account you can use either your account balance or a credit card.  Contributions through PayPal are acknowledged by PayPal, but actual tax receipts are issues by Lion of Judah Ministries.  The current rate to use PayPal is about 2.3%

If you have any questions about, or issues with, any of these contribution options please contact us at 772-245-8693 or email at

Thank you so much for your support.

The Lion of Judah Ministries exists for the sole purpose of supporting The Lion of Judah Academy in Tanzania.  Your contribution to The Lion of Judah Ministries goes directly to The Lion of Judah Academy.

The Lion of Judah Ministries is recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) charitable organization so all contributions are tax-deductible.  It was started in 2003 for the purpose of building partnerships between the school and individuals and churches in North America.  One aspect of that is helping interested donors get resources to Tanzania, which can be a challenge!  We use the fastest, most cost effective and reliable methods for getting your contribution to The Lion of Judah Academy…so it can bless and benefit the students there.

In 2016 the overhead of LOJM was 1.5%, one of the lowest in the entire charitable world, and that 1.5% was paid entirely through contributions designated specifically for the purpose of overhead expenses.  So when you make a contribution to The Lion of Judah Academy through The Lion of Judah Ministries, 100% of your contribution goes to the school (that is true for contributions made by check…contributions made through one of the online platforms — PayPal or PureCharity — are reduced slightly by the expenses to use that platform)

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