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In Ghana, ‘Day of Caring’ Brings Ghanaian and African-American Corporate Volunteers to Local Schools


By Kirsty Abena Serwa

Thursday, July 12, 2018.

Accra, Ghana-

In a combined class of junior high school students at the Unity Junior High School in Kotobabi, Elijah Gbologah listens with full attention as staff from Stanbic Bank share their teenage experiences and counsel students on life skills including personal development, time management, drug abuse and developing a culture of savings.

“I am happy for the fruitful advice from the volunteers today. They talked about issues some of us were facing like peer pressure and drug abuse,” said Elijah, a year 2 student, after the programme. “With this new knowledge, I will stop being disobedient and listen more to teachers in order to make it in life.”

Elijah is one of 2,300 students positively impacted by Day of Caring 2018, an annual corporate volunteer initiative by United Way Ghana. On the theme Unite For Education, over 70 volunteers from Stanbic Bank and the African American Association of Ghana, invested their time and efforts to engage students from kindergarten to upper primary in literacy activities such as reading, comprehension and storytelling. Students in junior high participated in discussions on life and career guidance.

Beneficiary schools in Accra are the Kotobabi Cluster of Schools, consisting of Kanda North Primary, Wilberforce Primary, Ayebeng Memorial A&B Primary and Unity Junior High School; the Great Kwame Nkrumah Memorial School in Chorkor and in Kumasi, the J.M Basic School in Asawase.

At the Great Kwame Nkrumah Memorial School in Chorkor, volunteers dedicated their time to cleaning, painting and rearranging the books in the school’s library in convenient order.

Acting Executive Director of United Way Ghana, Janet L. Butler, believes corporate volunteerism in education is a significant way to help motivate young students to improve their commitment to studies and prepare for the future. “Day of Caring is a long running tradition through which we partner with businesses to further demonstrate their value to the communities they serve through personal engagement and impact."

With support from Stanbic Bank, the main partner for Day of Caring 2018, together with Promasidor Ghana, Robert & Sons Optical Services, Silver Star Auto and Top Dog Africa, students received reading and colouring books, school supplies and free eye care services.

Manager for Communication at Stanbic Bank, Kojo Larbi, said employees of the bank are regularly encouraged to identify areas in their communities where they can contribute for social change and make an impact.

“Day of Caring is one of the ways we can give back to society by volunteering our time and expertise to social development, as part of our corporate social responsibility efforts,” he said.

Educators were not left out on the day. Teachers were given financial literacy training by financial experts from Stanbic, touching on interest rates and long term investment strategies.

Head teacher of Unity Junior High, Alhaj Armah Abubakar, said the financial interaction will go a long way to help teachers in their financial management practices, stressing how beneficial Day of Caring has been to both staff and students.

“We are grateful for the literacy skills education and resources given to the children because it confirms the regular advice from teachers, also for it to come from resource persons, they have been deeply motivated,” Alhaj Armah added.

Day of Caring: Unite For Education campaign forms part of United Way Ghana’s overarching Improving Basic Education (IBE) programme aimed at improving quality basic education and creating an enabling learning environment in schools through the provision of learning materials, literacy activities, teacher training, scholarships, digital skills, community engagement and improving school governance. IBE has positively impacted over 13,000 people since it was established in 2012.

Through IBE, United Way Ghana is contributing to advancing Sustainable Development Goal 4 on Education that advocates for inclusive and equitable quality education to promote lifelong learning opportunities for all. With quality education being an integral enabler of sustainable development, United Way Ghana’s efforts are helping the country to achieve the SDG 4 targets of improving access to quality education and making schools safer and enabling, to shape the future of young children positively.

Since 2006, United Way Ghana has organised 12 Day of Caring events, with support from 2,370 volunteers to impact the lives of 14,300 people nationwide. Day of Caring, also termed as Day of Action, is marked by more than 40 countries and territories worldwide where United Way has a presence.

If you would like to support the work of United Way Ghana, visit www.unitedwaygh.org to join the hand raisers, game changers and impact makers.

In Ghana, ‘Day of Caring’ Brings Ghanaian and African-American Corporate Volunteers to Local Schools

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