Education without doubt is one route that can lead to Africa’s transformation.
According to UNESCO’s Office in Dakar in 2012; “Sub-Saharan African countries are experiencing steady progress in education but children leave school, often without being able to read or write.
The latest edition of the Global Education Digest reveals that Africa has the world’s highest dropout rate. 42% of African school children will leave school early, with about one in six leaving before Grade 2.”
Hendrik van der Pol, Director of UNESCO Institute for Statistics adds up that school systems are reaching more children but losing them due to inefficiencies, which lead to grade repetition and early school leaving. And that it is far more difficult and costly to reach children once they leave school than to address the barriers and bottlenecks in the systems.
The second on the list of the Millennium Development Goals states that we need to achieve Universal Primary Education by 2015. Yes good progress have been made in some parts of Africa with respect to this goal, but yes also, many students get access to primary education but lacks the essence of the role of education at their level, especially in most deprived schools in sub-Saharan Africa.
Many students in deprived schools attend school but leave their minds home. Many students don’t know yet the essence of primary education. Schooling thus becomes a formality. As the United Nations organizations in charge continues to deal with providing access to primary education across Africa, there is the need also for educational projects to be embarked on by civil society organizations and other concerned bodies to ensure that students are inspired to hold on to the education ladder and benefit from its full climb. This is the primary concern for the 1BA GO EMPOWER Schools Project.
On the 24th of October, 2014 1Billion Africa team in Ghana embarked on a memorable educational project at the Agbogba Anglican School located in a community in Accra Ghana called Agbogba.
1Billion Africa contacted the school earlier and sort to inspire, inform and raise young leaders among the Junior High School students. Target students were students at the JHS 1, JHS 2 and JHS3 levels. The school’s JHS is made up of 2 building block managed by 2 different administrations. Each building has 3 Classroom, and each classroom had at least 50 students.
For over a period of 2hours, the 300plus students were taken through an intensive 1BA GO EMPOWER Project sessions with very innovative activities including interaction sessions and slideshow presentation, leadership empowerment group activities, educational discussions and debate sessions. Most students were asked what they aspired to become in future, with their heart touching and beautiful responses, the 1BA Team members used their lives and stories as examples to inspire the students to stay in school, keep their eyes on their dreams, and work hard and smart to become responsible people that their communities and country can trust, today and tomorrow.
At the end of the totally inspiring, informative activities and sessions, the students were gathered at their assembly grounds and a general challenge competition was introduced to them by the 1BA Team – THE SOLVE A PROBLEM IN YOUR SCHOOL COMPETITION.
Each student was asked to;
- Identify a problem in/around the school
- Suggest Solutions to this identified problem
- Assign an appropriate project name and do a short write-up
- A student is then supposed to submit the 1-paged project write-up to his/her teacher.
After the deadline in 2 weeks’ time (on 7th November, 2014); the best 5 projects would be selected and sponsored and the 5 students whose projects are selected would be made 1BA Young Ambassadors in the School.
The teachers and students were excited when this competition was introduced. The 1BA Team wished all the students and teachers the very best and thanked them all for the opportunity. The message to the entire school, especially to the students, was to live responsible lives as young leaders who would choose to turn a problem into a project instead of only talk about problems.
The heads in charge suggested that the 1BA Team organize a special impact session with the class prefects of the various classes. The 1BA Chairman, Prince Adu-Appiah had a special training session for the 6 prefects including the school prefect. Their personal details were taken and a mentorship programme has been arranged for them.
One challenge 1BA identified in the school is their lack of ICT materials and teacher. 1Billion Africa hopes to get some support to help provide the school with at least 5 desktop computers and arrange an ICT Volunteering Programme for the school. The day was crowned successful. Glory and thanks be to God.
4 Schools more to go with this project in 2014. To support, click here.