At a glance
- Live and work in a quiet, rural village and help youth engage with politics and community development
- Get real-world, on the ground insight into global issues of freedom and democracy
- Experience cultural exchange by learning from the diverse groups you work with
16 or over
Is Youth Empowerment in Ghana the right project for me?
Think about these two questions:
- Why is empowering youth important?
- How can we empower the youth?
In any country, these questions matter. In countries where democracy is new and fragile, it’s more important than ever to educate the leaders of tomorrow. Find answers to these questions through our Youth Empowerment Project in Ghana.
Through this volunteer project, you can:
- Become part of the fight to foster peaceful and free societies in the world
- Add global, hands-on experience to your CV
- Explore concepts of politics and human rights in a developing country
- Do something exciting and different for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award
You don’t need any experience to join this project. You’ll be guided by professional staff, who’ll teach you everything you need to know to participate. The only thing we need from you? A passion for politics and a commitment to justice!
We offer flexible dates, which means we can organise your trip around your schedule. You can stay for a minimum of one week, but we recommend going for longer to have a bigger impact on Ghana’s youth.
The project runs all year round, you can start on any day, and it’s fully supervised. So all you need to do is decide on some dates, complete our application form with a £195 deposit and we’ll take care of the rest.
What will I do on this volunteer project in Ghana?
Through our international youth development programmes in Ghana, you can expect to engage in several different activities:
Work on political campaigns
You’ll actively research human rights issues in Ghana and help to organise campaigns for change. Child slavery is a huge focus for us since it continues to be a significant issue. 21% of 5-17 year old Ghanaians are working, and the majority are ages 5-7.
Through your campaign work, you’ll:
- Learn how social norms and poverty contribute to issues like child slavery
- Gain the insight needed to work towards a solution to human rights violations
- Become part of a movement that actively protects Ghanaian youth
- Engage in activism that is safe and legal
Find fair solutions to the flow of money in the cocoa trade
Ghana’s economy is largely dependent upon trade. However, unfair practices cause poverty, which contributes to an unstable democracy. By understanding the problems and potential solutions in trade, you can help to increase prosperity among the youth.
You’ll focus on cocoa, which is Ghana’s largest export. It’s grown in the rainforest, and most farmers have an extremely low income. Unfortunately, the West Africa cocoa trade relies on the labour of two million unpaid child workers, and most profits go abroad, or are distributed among a small number of elite farmers. It’s critical that regulations are strengthened to ensure fair pay, so you’ll work on issues like this.
Work with nurses to do basic medical care
There’s a strong link between the health of citizens and the health of their democracy. A strong and fit youth will have the energy to focus on high level political projects. This is why we have volunteers like you do public health work in the community.
You don’t need previous medical experience, as you’ll be working under supervision to do things like:
- Dress minor wounds
- Carry out simple tests for hearing and respiration
Participate in excursions to learn about nature and politics
The work you do is tailored towards your students’ ages, so activities will always be age-appropriate. We don’t believe that learning is only for classrooms, so you’ll also venture out into nature. Together with your students, you’ll get real-world experience of the issues you’re debating.
You’ll do things like:
- Observe conservation efforts at local monkey sanctuaries
- Walk among the birds along the canopy bridge at Kakum National Park
- Watch elephants in their natural habitat
- Take a tour of Parliament and see democracy in action
Where will I work?
You’ll work in Akokoa Village, which has become Ghana’s own “Tore Community”. It’s the place where we’ve chosen to begin implementing Tore Eikeland’s ideals on freedom and democracy. Here, you’ll experience a more peaceful life, surrounded by fresh air and lush greenery.
It’s a small and quiet village, and many of the children who grow up here will go onto work in Ghana’s political centre, Accra. By empowering the young, we can open the door to help them fight for a more democratic and free political system as adults.
You’ll teach at the Tore Eikeland School. Your students will be eager to learn from you, and you’re bound to learn from them in return!
What is a typical day like?
In your small, quiet corner of rural Ghana, you’ll likely begin the day being woken by nature’s alarm clock: a rooster! You’ll share a breakfast of porridge, eggs, and toast with your host family before getting ready for the day’s work.
From your host family, you’ll travel to a local high school. You’ll discuss politics with your students, and engage in activities like debates.
During your free time, you can participate in traditional cooking, language, dance lessons, and more. Perfect for bonding with other Projects Abroad volunteers! In our opinion, taking in the sunset from the beach is the perfect way to end a productive workday - before the rooster wakes you up again for more exciting activities!
What is the goal of youth empowerment?
We have three goals that we work toward in Ghana:
- Foster cultural exchange
- Broaden elementary school curriculums
- Introduce youth to politics
Foster cultural exchange
Most of our volunteers come from countries that are long-standing, stable democracies. Democracy is a relatively new concept in Ghana, but one that has brought political stability and prosperity to its 30 million citizens.
While you’re there to share your ideas with Ghanaians, we encourage you to immerse yourself in the culture and strive for understanding yourself. Under supervision from a Projects Abroad Coordinator, you’ll have a healthy exchange of ideas with students. We also ensure this process continues when you leave Ghana, by facilitating continued interaction via social media.
Broaden the curriculum in elementary schools
To answer the question “how do we empower youth”, we have to go beyond the fundamental subjects typically taught in schools. While maths and English are important skills, subjects like sports and music also have a lot to teach kids.
Topics like nature and music aren’t part of the national curriculum in Ghana, so it’s critical for volunteers like you to teach them and encourage creativity and teamwork. This is also done through hands-on projects, such as cultivating a botanical garden, which will come to symbolise peace in the community.
Beyond these skills, children will also improve their English and build their confidence by interacting with you and learn about the history, geography, and culture of other countries.
Introduce youth to politics
One of the most fun and engaging projects you’ll work on is to set up debating societies in high schools. Teenagers have opinions, and healthy debates help them explore new ideas, think rationally, and learn to use their voices. You’ll take part in these debates, covering topics from terrorism to women’s rights, and help encourage the critical thinking skills that drive society forward.
We set out the aims and objectives of our projects in documents called Management Plans. We use them to properly plan the work you’ll do. They also help us measure and evaluate our achievements and impact each year.
Ultimately, our Management Plans help us make our projects better. This in turn means you get to be part of something that makes a real impact where it’s needed. Read more about our Management Plans.
Food and accommodation
You'll stay with a host family in Ghana. They will welcome you into their home, eager to share their customs and have you teach them about your own culture. We believe that this is the best way to immerse yourself in the culture of Ghana and have a truly unique experience.
We will always try to let you live alongside at least one other Projects Abroad volunteer or intern at the same host family. Your room will be modest, but comfortable, clean, and safe.
Your programme fee includes three meals a day.
Find out more about our accommodation.
Leisure activities and free time
Volunteering in Ghana is an ideal way to explore this colourful West African country. There’s a huge variety of different activities to do while you’re there, giving you plenty of exciting ways to spend your free time.
Music is a central part of Ghanaian culture. In the bigger towns, especially Accra, you will hear some great live bands and have some memorable nights out. Evenings spent at buzzing restaurants will also give you a taste of some of the delicious local cuisine.
For a look into Ghana’s history, you can tour the slave forts of Cape Coast and visit museums. Nature lovers will relish trekking through the rainforests of Kakum National Park or Mole National Park.
We run a wide range of projects in Ghana so there’s sure to be other volunteers there during your trip. This means you can explore the country solo or connect with other volunteers and travel as a group.
Safety and staff support
Your safety and security is our prime concern. We have many procedures and systems to ensure you have the support you need to enjoy your trip with peace of mind. Our Projects Abroad staff are available 24 hours a day to help, and will be on-hand to make sure you settle in well at your accommodation and placement. If you encounter any problems, they will be available to help at any time.
Find out more about safety and backup.
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