The mission of the Ghana Project is to provide a dynamic opportunity for Vanderbilt students to engage in meaningful service in the Cape Coast region of The Republic of Ghana. Ghana’s diverse cultural, socio-economic, and ecological landscape provide an ideal opportunity for students to learn about the West African nation while utilizing their skills to serve in a variety of roles in the local communities.
Beginning in the spring, students selected into the Ghana Project cohort will participate in a series of seminars designed to enable them to approach the work with a culturally sensitive and impact-oriented mindset, culminating in four weeks of service during the Maymester program. Students will experience cultural immersion through a homestay portion of their stay in Ghana, and reside in a living-learning community within a bunkhouse with other student participants for the remainder of the program. Focus areas for student service work in Ghana include:
Students working in Public Health Outreach will engage with local communities to raise awareness of the importance of health education and environmental pollution. They may organize workshops about HIV/AIDS, STDs, water sanitation, dental hygiene and tropical diseases, and will work to support educational programs at local health clinics and schools.
Students interested in serving within the Ghanaian educational system and supporting the academic development of children and young adults will have an opportunity to work in a number of diverse capacities in Ghana. Students serving the special education/special needs community will develop custom curriculum enrichment and provide one-on-one support to students with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, and ADHD. Students will also have the opportunity to work with the Ghana Ministry of Education to provide holistic education for children; preparing them for national exams as well as exploring the arts and athletic endeavors.
Students with a background or interest in environmental issues can work to support the conservation of Kakum National Park, ensuring preservation of historical and ecological resources while partnering with local eco-tourism industries to promote sustainable socio-economic development in the region. Students will gain insight into reforestation efforts, national resource management, sustainable agriculture, and urban planning.
While focusing on meaningful service-learning, students will also have the opportunity to develop an understanding of the social and cultural complexity that comprises the fabric of life in Ghana. In addition to daily service work in the community, group reflection sessions, and lectures, students will also have the opportunity to explore the Cape Coast with cultural presentations about local arts, music, and foods, and excursions to nearby sites including Accra. Students will also learn about the history of the region, from the slave trade to the current political climate.
* Please note dates and costs are subject to change
The application form can be found HERE.
For questions regarding the OACS Global Service Project to Ghana contact Christine Drasba: firstname.lastname@example.org