Salama Shield





Since 1992, SSF has worked with ethnographic researchers, faith leaders, traditional healers, local mentors, and budding entrepreneurs in Malawi, Zimbabwe, Uganda, and Canada to make meaningful, sustainable differences in communities.




To sustainably mitigate critical health and development needs for vulnerable communities.



To strengthen communicative processes between stakeholders in fulfilling the vision.


Our community-led programs take a uniquely compelling and sensitive approach to: HIV/AIDS prevention, small business development (including micro-loans), gender-based violence (GBV) intervention, mental health, food insecurity, poverty, education, and WASH (water, sanitation, hygiene issues).


We have learned from our previous successes using participatory processes and practices in Uganda.


We are currently expanding our work and scope by engaging with black ethnocultural communities in Ontario, Canada and in resource compromised communities in Malawi



The African philosophy of ubuntu shapes and informs our legacy to “do development differently.” Ubuntu is a Nuguni Bantu term that translates as:


I am who I am (my being),

by virtue of my presence with others in community (my belonging),

and our shared desire to be fully human (our becoming).


This can be interpreted as, “I am who I am because of who we all are together in community.”



Dear Friends of Salama SHIELD Foundation:


Over the past 28 years, SSF has committed to coming alongside resource-compromised communities in Malawi, Zimbabwe and Uganda. As of May 2021, SSF-Uganda is now formally registered as an indigenous non-government organization (NGO) and not a foreign NGO. This means it is autonomously managed and administered by Ugandans. In 2021, SSF began working with black, African Diaspora ethnocultural communities in Ontario, Canada, using participatory processes learned in Sub-Saharan Africa over our 28-year history. 


At Salama SHIELD Foundation, we believe that meaningful, relevant, and sustainable development must be community-owned. When the felt-needs, cultural values, and social dynamics of affected persons are respected and prioritized, individuals and communities are enabled and empowered to reclaim their hope, sense of worthwhileness, and well-being.

Thank you for considering support for our programs, primarily delivered through our partners in Canada (Sovereign Core), Malawi (SSF-M), and Uganda (SSF-U). We are sincerely grateful.


Dennis G. Willms 



Dennis G. Willms, Ph.D.
Founding Director and CEO 


Associate Professor –

ret. McMaster University

Bruce Scott, M.A.


Consultant and Director to a number of Nairobi-based Agroforestry Research Institutes


Justin Student, M.A.

Instructional Designer, MEDlT Educational Technology Unit
University of British Columbia


Jason Theede, M.PH.

Senior Specialist – Labour Mobility & Human Development
IOM – UN Migration Agency