Ghana Together works with our Ghanaian friends of Western Heritage Home, a Ghanaian-registered and managed non-profit, to improve social, educational, and health conditions in Axim, Ghana. Together we accomplish projects, connect WHH to resourceful individuals and organizations, and create sustainable programs. We make a real difference to real people in a local, grassroots effort. Our website at tells our story.

Sep 12, 2008

Bellingham Teen Returns from Literacy Project at WHH Children's Home in Axim, Ghana

Elena Robertson, a Bellingham, Washington high-school senior, has returned from a journey to Axim, Ghana where she conducted a literacy project with children in the Western Heritage Home's Children's Residential Program. She was accompanied by her Dad and was coached prior to her journey by a former teacher from Skagit County who has worked extensively with children whose first language is other than English.

Elena worked with the children to improve their English language reading and especially writing skills. English is the official language of Ghana, but these children speak Nzema or Fante as their first language.

Each child made a personal "book", made from discarded wallpaper sample books Elena brought with her. Paper is scarce in Axim. She also taught the children how to illustrate their books. For these children, who have had meagre schooling until they moved into the Children's Home in Dec '07, practice in writing is vital. Thanks to Elena, they had the opportunity to tell their own stories, express themselves in art, and sharpen their writing skills. And, they had a chance to get to know a kind and caring young American woman whom they will always remember. Elena is sharing her experience with friends and family, and incorporating her work in Ghana into her senior project.

Meanwhile, Doug, Elena's Dad, worked with the local soccer team to improve skills, assisted his daughter, and in general enjoyed getting to know this remote fishing town, which is poor in terms of material wealth, but rich in traditional Ghanaian culture, as exemplified in the photo of the man putting finishing touches on the new fishing canoe.