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Why I would love to volunteer in Ghana

Updated on May 12, 2011

Why do I want to do voluntary work in Ghana?

For the past year, I have wanted to travel to Ghana as a volunteer. The more I read about it, the more I want to go. My ideal trip trip to Ghana would be one where I could volunteer in an orphanage and/or school for young children, but also have time to do a bit of travelling around in the evening.

Apart from that, another thing that really appeals to me is the idea of staying with a host family! I would love to stay with a Ghanaian family and experience how they live and what their daily life is like in Ghana.

I have made this lens to share with you all the reasons of why Ghana appeals to me and why I would love to go there one day as a volunteer.

What is your opinion of Ghana?

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It's a peaceful country

Actually, the most peaceful African country!

According to the Global Peace Index (GPI) released by Britain's Economist Intelligence Unit, Ghana is the most peaceful country in Africa and the 40th most peaceful country in the world.

And if you think that's not peaceful enough, then listed to this: Ghana ranked HIGHER than the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Russia and China.

The report also included that Ghana had only a few internal conflicts, and had generally very good relations with the neighbouring countries. The crime level is also very low in Ghana.

The Festivals and Celebrations

Ghanaian celebrations are a colorful and vibrant part of the Ghanain culture. Each year, several festivals are held across the country. Below are a list of the festivals that take place in Ghana.

  • Akwasidae festival, takes place in Manhyia, Kumasi every six weeks
  • Dodoleglime festival, takes place in Ve Traditional Area in November
  • Dipo festival, takes place in Odumase in February
  • Gmayem festival, takes place in Manya Krobos in October
  • Gologo festival, takes place in Talensi in March
  • Aboakyer festival, takes place in Winneba on the first Saturday in May
  • Asafotufiam festival, takes place in Ada in July/August
  • Damba festival, takes place in Tamale in July/August
  • Bakatue festival, takes place in Elmina on the first Tuesday in July
  • Akwambo festival, takes place in Agona Nyakrom or Agona Swedru in August
  • Epor festival, takes place in the Lolobi-KumasiVolta Region at any time of the year
  • Fetu Afahye, takes place in Cape Coast on the first Saturday in September
  • KLOYOSIKPLEM festival, takes in Yilo Krobo (Somanya) in November
  • Kobine festival, takes place in Lawra in September
  • Homowo festival, takes place in Accra in August/September
  • Kundum festival, takes place in Axim, Tokaradi in August/September
  • Odwira festival, takes place in Akropong in September
  • Apoo festival, takes place in Wenchi/Techiman in October
  • Fofie Yam festival, takes place in Nchiraa near Wenchi in October
  • Hogbetsotso festival, takes place in Anloga on the first Saturday in November
  • Mmoaninko festival, takes place in Offinso in November
  • Fiok festival, takes place in Centime in December
  • Fao festival, takes place in Navrongo in January

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The People of Ghana

Ghana is regarded as the most peaceful African country, and the people of Ghana are arguably the most friendly African people. They come from six different main ethnic groups; the Akan (Ashanti and Fanti), the Ewe, the Ga-Adangbe, the Mole-Dagbani, the Guan, and the Gurma.

What other volunteers have said about the Ghanaian people they met in Ghana

"The first thing that struck me, and indeed the thing that continued all through my stay, was the incredible friendliness and hospitality of the Ghanaian people." - Friends of Ghana Volunteers Report, Becky's thoughts

"I loved my volunteer placement in Ghana. The people were so friendly and welcoming." - Hannah Steadman, Volunteer to Ghana

"People are so friendly here and you often hear calls of "Obruni" ("white person", but not meant offensively!)" - Bryony Middleton, Volunteer to Ghana

"The people were so friendly. I was made to feel welcome and looked after fantastically the whole time I was there." - Caroline Anderton, Volunteer to Ghana (ghanadrumschool.com)

"I will always remember the amazing Ghanaians - the teachers and the locals - who welcomed us into their lives so readily." - Alanna Maguire, ghanadrumschool.com

"My host family were very welcoming and friendly." - Netta Beardsmore, Volunteer (www.yearoutgroup.org)

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The kids in the orphanage or school

And the help I could give them

In 2007, there were 1.1 million children orphaned in Ghana, and another 81,000 died of starvation, malnutrition or malaria. I would love to be able to help just a tiny handful of the orphans in Ghana, if only for a few weeks. I think it would be one of the most amazing things ever!

Like the people of Ghana, many volunteers have commented on how gorgeous and loving the Ghanaian children are.

Most children begin their education at age three or four, and learn simple number, rhymes and shapes. There are over 18,000 schools in Ghana for children up until the age of 18, but of course, not all children have the opportunity to attend school unless they have parents or sponsors who can pay for them.

Lots of schools want volunteers to offer their services in teaching whatever subjects they can and helping in any way possible. In the orphanages, help with the children's homework is very welcome from the volunteers.

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Organizations that help you volunteer in Ghana

Volunteer in Africa

Bunac - Working Adventures Worldwide

Gap Year Ghana

Cosmic Volunteers

Global Volunteer Network

Projects Abroad

Global Volunteers

goabroad.com - find organizations offering volunteer abroad programs

TIP: You can find orphanages and schools that you can contact directly if you are interested in volunteering at them, however, it is highly recommended that you do it through a registered organization, as it is much more secure and there is insurance.

Ghana (Bradt Travel Guide)
Ghana (Bradt Travel Guide)

A great travel guide - read the customer reviews if you want to hear the stories of other satisfied customers!

 
Glimmers of Hope : Memoir of a Volunteer in Africa
Glimmers of Hope : Memoir of a Volunteer in Africa

Although not Ghana, this is a great book about a volunteer who visited Zambia. It is a good read and contains some lovely stories about voluntary work in Africa in general.

 

What do you think? - Leave me your comments!

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      It's great that you have a desire to see the world but also to try to improve it. I would ask you to think hard about whether going to a developed country to volunteer is really going to help that country though. Volunteering disrupts the local economy, work that you do will mean someone in that country is missing out on a job. Working in an orphange is particularly problematic, children there can be have there sense of abandonment reinforced time and time again as they form bonds with westerners that will be moving on shortly.

      If you really want to help out in Ghana, then go there, travel, eat the food, meet the people but most importantly spend as much money as you can in locally owned businesses, this will create jobs and wealth in Ghana.

      You might want to read this article http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/hubs/gapyear/810...

    • lollyj lm profile image

      Laurel Johnson 6 years ago from Washington KS

      I applaud your desire to volunteer in helpful ways. I hope you get your wish.

      Good luck!!

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      DaveHiggsVis 6 years ago

      Both my wife and my best friend have volunteered in Ghana, and they highly recommend it! The people are so friendly, the land is gorgeous, and the food is stellar. If you ever get the chance to go, do it!!

    • Krafick profile image

      Krafick 6 years ago

      I wish you a good job there if you do go. When you come back, maybe you'd like to go to Dharamshala and work with the Tibetans. Rafick.