In the summer of 2011 we, Senator Security, sponsored Alison May’s son, Nick, to go to Ghana as a volunteer to help on various orphanage school projects; Alison works in our Accounts Department at the Head Office in Bromley. We were asked if we could contribute towards things like activity books, games, footballs, etc, so we donated £500 which covered everything he needed. The text below is an overview provided by Nick when he returned… a rewarding experience for all involved.
Thank you once again for your kind sponsorship, I had a great time in Ghana, here are some of the highlights:
Upon arrival it became apparent that the female volunteers were encouraged to engage in classroom teaching, whereas the males were wanted for labour and construction. The volunteers were distributed evenly between several schools, my school was named Sunrise, located on Lake Volta. We worked 9am-2pm Monday-Friday helping to build new classrooms; I have attached a few photos of us at work.
In addition to construction, I was able to get heavily involved with the school football team. Given my personal passion for football, this was something that I loved doing, as I was able to share my coaching skills with the kids, who had never had any exposure to proper training. I managed the end of term football day, where my school travelled across Lake Volta to play a series of matches against their sister school. A personal highlight was rowing across Lake Volta with the squad, closely followed by being unwillingly elected to referee the girl’s match!
Although I only did a little teaching, I was still able to make good use of all the equipment I took, mainly at lunch time’s and after school. The children loved playing frisbee, skipping games, rounders, colouring in, and face painting. Also, the children were absolutely delighted to take home the activity books/packs I gave them. I donated all of my reading books to a local library, where the children loved us reading to them (the children all spoke English).
At the weekends our time was free… I visited Kakum National Park, on the border of the Ivory Coast. Here I slept over night in a tree house in the middle of the jungle, and did both a midnight and morning hike. A group of us spent a weekend at Kokrobite, which had an amazing beach. The area had a large rastafarian community and we got to party with them one Saturday night on the beach.
I also got to visit some of the old slave dungeons, which was emotional. Overall, I had an amazing experience, the Ghanaians embraced us and I do feel that as a volunteer I helped make a difference.
February 13, 2012