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About Brother James - continued

One Sunday in 1975 he was asked to care for four very young orphans – including girls – whose widowed father had starved to death. The way forward became clear – to hire a foster mother – and the organisation named as Reaching the Unreached (RTU) was born. RTU now cares for almost 1000 disadvantaged children, with the oldest being supported through college and tertiary education. There are now more than sixty foster family groups living in four Children’s Villages, seven hostels for teenagers and four high-performing schools. Finance for the work has come from both secular and religious sources around the world.

Brother James always looked to respond to every human need that he encountered, with a special focus on the very poor. Reaching the Unreached, which he directed until well into his eighties, is testament to this. 

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It provides medical care to thousands of rural villagers, has built more than 8700 family houses, and drilled 2500 community wells. Brother James’s skills developed alongside their needs – he was a qualified dowser, he designed buildings and he painted. He combined all the skills needed to direct and manage an operation as large as RTU with a compassion that was forever imbued with values that put the beneficiary first.

Brother James set the highest standards of integrity and commitment for himself. He certainly expected this from others. He never wished to be the centre of things or sought any award. His sole aim was for people to be self-sufficient through education, decent housing, accessible water and good healthcare.

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