In August, volunteer Jenny Lee from the UK joined us to work in the Education Center library. We were able to keep the library open for the children to use during school vacation time.
Jenny reads with students in the Education Center library
Also in August, the library received a donation of book repair supplies from Anna Cameron, a school librarian from the Holy Rosary School in Burlington, Ontario, Canada. These supplies are hard to find in Ghana, and have allowed us to put many of our damaged books back on the shelves.
Much-needed supplies for repairing damaged books
Anna Cameron exploring Kumasi Central Market
In September, Lisa Parsons and a local colleague named Jiwa collaborated to create a new book for the library collection, based on a song activity for learning English words.
The latest new book in the collection
Light for Children's Program Coordinator, Mike Owusu, visited several schools to interact with young students on their first day of school. By creating a positive first impression, this kind of activity increases the likelihood that children will stay in school and attend regularly.
First day of school
Mavis and Mabel, two of the three girls sponsored by Susanne Sandquist through Light for Children, paid a visit to our office. These two girls are now nearing the end of their senior high school programs. We would also like to thank sponsor Una Mether, who sponsors a girl in Nsuta.
Mavis and Mabel at Light for Children's office
Danish volunteers Mette Heilskov Sorensen and Julie Malthe Kristensen have been working at the Mampong Babies Home since July. They will be leaving at the end of October and will be missed.
Mette and Julie with children at Mampong Babies Home
Light for Children participated in a durbar (public event) on the topic of education and rights for girls. The durbar organised by Coalition of NGOs in Health, was attended by local politicians, traditional leaders, church leaders and NGOs, and dealt with topics such as how household chores and other common practices can create barriers to girls' education.
Mike with traditional leaders at the durbar
In September, two students from the social work department of Lund University in Sweden joined us to begin 4-month internships. Tabitha Small and Linnea Silverdahl are working on the Preventive Child Sexual Abuse program with local volunteer Joe Adom. The group has been conducting workshops in Kumasi-area schools. Long-term volunteer Carina Monstad of Norway assisted with training and preparation.
Joe, Tabitha and Linnea leading a Preventive Sexual Abuse workshop in a local school
Socializing with the students after a workshop
Light for Children has recently joined Girls Not Brides, an international network dedicated to ending the practices of child and forced marriages. Mike recently visited 21 communities in northern Ghana where the practice is common to find out more about this phenomenon. Next year, Light for Children will implement a project to address this issue.
Mike with the head teacher at one of the schools in a community affected by child marriage. Seven of his female students have recently disappeared, almost certainly because of underage marriages.
Mike participated in a community radio program to inform people in rural areas about new anti-corruption laws that protect whistle-blowers and make it easier for citizens to report corruption. There are now toll-free numbers so that people in isolated villages do not have to report in person if they are unable. The Ghana Anti-Corruption Coalition (GACC) will also advocate on behalf of anyone who wishes to report, and can even pursue legal action.
Mike at a community radio program on fighting corruption
I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!