What we do
The overall goal is to to reduce inequality and fighting poverty while promoting rights, gender equality and good governance in Northern Ghana.
We do this in close collaboration with our two Ghanaian partner organizations as well as other civil society organizations in Ghana.
We support local civil society organisations and groups for them to better organized and able to improve their own and other local people’s living conditions and ability to claim their rights.
Another important component of our work is national and international advocacy to influence policymakers, promoting rights and putting inequality on the political agenda.
Where we work
Ghana Friends works in the northern part of Ghana. The northern part of Ghana largely consists of savannah, and the climate is dry. The region is poor in resources, sparsely populated compared to southern Ghana, and has a sky-high youth unemployment rate.
Great changes have taken place in Ghana since the country became independent in 1957. Most for the better, but inequality is rising, between southern and northern Ghana, between men and women and between old and younger generations.
7 out of 10 of inhabitants in the north of Ghana live below the official poverty line of two dollars a day, and 90 percent are dependent on agriculture. However, the dependence of agriculture makes residents vulnerable because the weather is becoming more unpredictable. Long periods of drought can suddenly be replaced by heavy rain and flooding. For every five Ghanaians two are under 15 years of age, so the country is young in more ways than one.
Therefore Ghana Friends wants to help to strengthen primary school system and help children to school, equip young unemployed to be more entrepreneurial and start their own businesses, help farmers to improve their agricultural practices and lastly guide whole communities, in particular women and children, to better organized and able to fight for equality, good governance and social rights.
INFO OM NORDGHANA
Our thematic focus areas
We focus our work on three thematic areas:
1) Access to quality education,
2) Hunger and poverty reduction, and
3) Youth empowerment
...because these areas are the foundation for a well-functioning community.
In addition, good governance and gender equality are essential elements of our mission and
permeates all activities and programs
See the description of the three focus areas:
• More children from poor communities have access to quality education
• The School for Life teaching model is used broadly in Ghana
• Both children and parents have influence on their children's’ local schooling and way through the education system
School for Life –
Together with our local partner organization School for Life, we have developed a teaching model, where children aged 8-14 years within 9 months learn to read, write and count.
Classes are held on the children's own mother tongue, and the pupils also learn about more practical things. After nine months, they are capable to continue in an ordinary primary school.
In close cooperation with the local partner School for Life, we conduct policy advocacy to improve the quality of schools and gain access to quality education for all children in Ghana. One of our
As a result, Ghana's government adopted a national policy for complementary education based on the School for Life model.
• So far 230,000 children have been educated through the School for Life complementary teaching model.
• The national policy for complementary education has been adopted based on the School for Life model.
E4L supports education
Watch the short video on our work with quality education.
Young people in Northern Ghana are aware of their rights and equipped to take the media in use as a means to organize and unite against social inequality and injustice.
• Young people must have a stronger voice and are able to speak critically and constructively on social, economic and political injustice, like injustice against women.
• Educate young people in entrepreneurship and innovation for them to be able to start their own businesses and create a better life for them and their family.
Youth Empowerment for Life
Unemployment is sky-high among young people in Northern Ghana, and there are very few job opportunities in the regular labour market. For many young people, the most obvious opportunity is to start his own business and through the company get an income and create their own future.
Ghana Friends supports this approach by working with our partner organization Youth Empowerment for Life. For example, Youth Empowerment for Life organizes innovative entrepreneur boot camps for young people.
Furthermore, we are helping to establish youth centers to create a strong local youth movement and involve young people in local policy-making processes.
• 375 youth have been trained in Entrepreneurship and have started their own business.
• 10 youth centers that are run by active young people who for example conduct information-sharing sessions and broadcast their own youth radio program.
The youth parliament in Saboba
Watch how youth have startet a youth parliament in Saboba district and how Youth Empowerment for Life works to empowerment the youth.
HUNGER & POVERTY REDUCTION
• More households in the northern region have a better standard of living and chronic hunger among children is reduced.
• Improve the organisation of farmers, so they can improve their farming methods and get better access to markets where they can sell their products.
• Strengthen the farmers' ability to raise capital they can invest in their business or farm.
• Strengthen livelihood of 5000 nomadic households by securing, maintaining and promoting free movement across borders and regions for migrant cattle owners drivers in West Africa
The vast majority of inhabitants in the northern part of Ghana is dependent on agriculture. Cultivation and breeding of animals is what produces the daily income. Ghana Friends is working with our Ghanaian partners Community Life Improvement Program and Ghana Developing Communities Association to organize the farmers and peasants, so they can improve farming techniques and get better opportunities to trade and sell their products.
Ghana Friendship also equips the peasants and farmers to withstand emergencies, if the crops fail, and to raise capital, they can invest in their business or agriculture activity. One of the means is establishment of saving-loan groups, where residents organize themselves locally and raise funds for both savings and loans.
The method is highly effective and can, among other things, raise funds for better marketing of agricultural products.
• 35 women's groups supported to produce and process agricultural products.
• 85 saving-loan groups have been created and provided access to loans and greater livelihood security.
Food security and gender equality
Watch the short videos on how we work with food security and how gender equality is promoted.
Our programmes and projects
We support local civil society organisations and groups to organize and fight for
their social rights.
We have a special focus on access to quality education, development of agricultural sector, strengthening of young people's rights, because these areas are the foundation for the development of the well-functioning society.