About the Ghana Program
GILINAVO GHANA project descriptions
Although Ghana is an English-speaking country, many school children cannot communicate effectively in the English language especially in the “remote areas” and hinterlands. Also being surrounded by French speaking countries means we cannot neglect the French language. This common challenge rises in both the rural and urban areas of Ghana and there is a real need for volunteers to assist communities and towns with a shortage of teaching staff.
The Teaching project in Ghana seeks to stimulate the interest of school children in studying and speaking French and English, while simultaneously offering international volunteers the opportunity to gain a greater understanding of the Ghanaian culture and education system. Volunteers are placed in both rural and urban areas in Ghana, where they assist one or the few local teachers. Volunteers on this project follow the syllabus of the Ghana Education Service, which is made available to volunteers during their orientation. Music, Mathematics and Arts are also incorporated into the syllabus and volunteers are encouraged to bring materials that can enhance their teaching.
The school year has three terms and there are 3 – 4 weeks holiday break termly. Volunteers who apply for the Teaching project during these holiday breaks will work with school directors and placement staff in creating school holiday workshops for the children and volunteers will then run these workshops unassisted. Volunteers do not need to be qualified or experienced teachers to participate on this project; however GILINAVO GHANA offers volunteers the opportunity to upgrade their skills for their Teaching projects by gaining a recognized certificate after finishing the voluntary service.
Through providing education, love, care and attention to orphaned children in Ghana, the Childcare project aims to address the problems that children left without parents and without support due to poverty of some of the parents who cannot afford their children school fees face.
Volunteers on this project are placed in both rural and urban communities or areas where they teach and provide care and affection to orphans and less privileged children in Ghana. Volunteers are responsible for designing and implementing effective teaching programs, activities and events to inspire and develop the talent and abilities of the children.
Volunteers are welcome to bring along books, pencils, basic first aid supplies and musical instruments to help entertain the children and assist with activities. These supplies can generally be purchased in the country; if packing space is limited (GILINAVO encourages the purchase of supplies in Ghana to support the Ghanaian economy, rather than buying the goods pre-departure).
Volunteers with a love of sport and real enthusiasm for working with children are well suited to our Sports Teaching project in Ghana. Volunteers on this project work with young children and occasionally older Ghanaians to help develop their interest in a range of sports and increase their skills base.
In addition to the physical benefits of sports education, this project helps in developing the mental discipline of the children, as well as heightening their alertness and coordination. The Sports Teaching project will generally involve physical training, teaching the children how to work as a team, bringing the best out in the players, and encouraging children to have more self-confidence.
Football/soccer is a popular sport in Ghana; however volunteers are also encouraged to introduce new sports to the children. To teach these sports, volunteers may need to bring equipment from home, as there is a chance it may not be available for purchase in Ghana to organize competition among schools in our rural and urban communities.
Volunteers do not need any previous teaching experience to participate on the Sports Education project, however it is important to note that volunteers may be required to teach other classes during their project, such as Mathematics, English, Science or Social Studies as sports is usually taught in the afternoon and early evening. During the school holidays, volunteer will work on school holiday workshops that will be created by the school directors, placement staff and volunteers.
The Medical project in Ghana works within rural and some of the urban in Ghanaian communities. This project aims to help smaller Ghanaian communities which are deprived of access to basic healthcare and medicine. In the major cities of Ghana, such as Accra, medical care is fairly good and accessible relative to other African nations.
However, once you leave the cities, the standard drops considerably and there is a real shortage of trained medical professionals to work in these communities and provide basic healthcare services. Volunteers on the Medical Project in Ghana are placed in small rural clinics and some of the urban clinic who need the assistance of the volunteer where they work closely with the local staff.
Some Medical volunteers also have the opportunity to be placed within our Orphanage Work project, where they visit the various orphanages we work with, providing medical care and guidance to those in need. It is important to note that the facilities and resources on this project are extremely limited and provide a much different working environment to what most Medical volunteers have experienced before.
Volunteers on the Medical Project in Ghana must be qualified medical professionals or have completed at least two years of medical training and provide a copy of their medical qualifications, or a letter and transcript from their school to be provided to staff in Ghana on arrival.Midwives are also able to work within one of our rural clinics on this project. Some of our villages due to distance of the hospital some women also practice traditional midwife which is not secure for babies and mothers.
Construction and Renovation
Based in rural and some of the urban Ghana, the Construction and Renovation project offers volunteers the special opportunity to work alongside with local people to help improve the infrastructure in our communities. This project focuses on the construction and renovation of orphanages, clinics, community centers, toilet facilities and schools.
Volunteers also have the opportunity to meet chiefs and community elders, and learn about the various cultures of the different communities through music and dance. Volunteers work closely with the local people and GILINAVO Ghana staff on tasks which include painting, brick laying, plastering, digging, block shaping, carpentry, steel bending, mortar mixing, etc. If you’re a keen outdoors person with a good level of fitness, this will be a perfect project for you.
Please note, projects and volunteer roles will vary from community to community. Volunteers should bring gloves, flash light, light weight scarf for sun protection or hat, insect repellent, working boots and water bottle. Please note, this project has an additional fee of US$ 40 per week for construction and renovation materials that are used during the project.
The Agriculture Project in Ghana is designed for those volunteers who enjoy more physical aspect of volunteering and don’t mind getting their hands dirty. The focus of this project is to address the difficulties facing orphanage placements in terms of providing a sustainable food source for the children.
Volunteer work on the Agriculture Project involves both crop farming (eggplants, capsicums, palms etc.) and animal farming (rabbits, goats, chickens etc.). The work available is dependent on the season and where volunteers are placed. Volunteers will be involved in clearing land for growing crops, assisting with fertilizing the land, developing land for cropping, planting crops, nurturing crops, teaching farming techniques to local staff, assisting with purchasing stock, caring for stock, and fencing and moving stock.
To support the orphanages where our volunteers’ work, the produce grown through the Agriculture project is donated to these orphanages, thus supplementing the children’s food intake. Work on the Agriculture project usually stops during thehottest period of the day and during this time volunteers will assist with teaching in local schools to ensure they have sufficient volunteer work.
While previous agricultural experience is not a prerequisite for this project, more experienced volunteers will be able to assist in developing the project and teaching techniques to the staff and older children at the orphanages, helping them to farm their crops and animals more effectively.
Please note, resources and machinery are extremely limited on this project and most work is very labour intensive and also our villages are becoming desert due to falling off the trees. GILINAVO is aim to fight desertification so the NGO is organizing afforestation project in the villages for a better climate. Volunteers should bring gloves, flash light, light weight scarf for sun protection or hat, insect repellent, working boots, water bottle.
VOLUNTEER ACCOMMODATION AND MEALS
Volunteers are accommodated in a volunteer house where they live with other volunteers and local staff. On some projects, volunteers also stay together in a volunteer house alongside a local family. There are separate rooms for male and female volunteers with shared common room and toilet facilities. Living is basic but the majority of volunteer houses have electricity, while only few have running water. Power cuts are common in Ghana and most rural houses do not have running water during times of drought. Bedding (pillows and sheets) is provided, however it is recommended that volunteers bring their own towels, mosquito nets and even bed sheets if you wishes.
Volunteers in Ghana are served three meals per day (breakfast, lunch and dinner). Breakfast generally consists of tea and coffee, toast and fruit. A typical lunch can include meat and vegetables with rice or noodles, while dinner may consist of varieties of Ghanaian dishes, such as fufu, banku, akple, yam etc. On the contrary, if you have special dietary requirements, please let us know ahead of time so that we can make arrangements for you.
Orientation is hosted by our Ghana team in Accra and begins on the morning of your chosen start date. This covers everything you need to know for your volunteer program Ghana – Introduction to Ghana, Culture and Customs, Rules and Expectations, Safety, Travel Opportunities, Introduction to Project and Placement.
The orientation will also give you a chance to meet other volunteers and swap contact details for weekend travel and socializing.
First Day: On the first day of the volunteering placement, the volunteers will be escorted to the project and introduced to the staff at the project you will be working with.
Weekdays: While our programs are flexible and can be fitted to your requirements, an example of a typical day is as follows.
7.30AM Breakfast with the host 8.20’ AM Volunteers leave home and are dropped (or walk) to their placements to join the placement staff. There is usually a tea break and lunch break.
2.00PM – 5.00PM Work at the placement usually ends. Volunteers are free to go sightseeing or do some shopping or can have some rest.
6.30PM Dinner with host Please note, this schedule can vary depending on the project that the volunteer is participating in.
Weekend usually start on Friday evening, during the weekends, volunteers have spare time and usually just relax or take the opportunity to explore other parts of their local town and Ghana.
Long weekends can be taken to travel further afield such as Cape Coast or other Western African countries.
If volunteers wish to volunteer over the weekends they can join local teams and visit other orphanages (or other children helping organizations) to spend time simply playing with and entertaining the children.
|Ghana Volunteer Fees||Volunteer period||Program fee US$|
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Please note: All programs attract a Registration Fee of $250 USD on top of the Program Fee. The Construction and Renovation project has an extra cost of US$40 per week to cover construction materials used during the project. This will be included in the fees quoted to you by GILINAVO when you apply.
What do my fees pay for?
Registration Fee (refundable if you choose not to go) – ongoing support from GILINAVO staff, program marketing costs, information pack, administration costs, GILINAVO travel costs to inspect programs and communication costs with volunteers
Program Fee – airport pick-up, orientation, program supervision, accommodation and meals during volunteer program period, in-country 24/7 volunteer support and in-country administration costs.
What additional costs will I have?
Visa, flights, travel insurance (mandatory), vaccinations, criminal background check, transfer back to the airport at conclusion of program, souvenirs, in-country trips or tours and spending money (volunteers in Ghana generally find US$35 to be sufficient for basic weekly expenses). * – Terms and conditions do apply.