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 30, 2008

WHH Administrative Assistant Anastasia Amoo Starts Business School

To our readers:
Below is an article written by Anastasia Amoo, who for 1.5 years has been the administrative assistant at the Children's Home. She has decided to leave to get further business training, and will continue to serve, she says, as a "volunteer ambassador" for Western Heritage Home and its programs in Axim. Anas, with her computer skills and compassion, was instrumental in launching the children's program. She deserves fulsome thanks. We think you'll find her article about her career, the school she will be attending, and her general comments very interesting. She is replaced by Barbara Davis, who will also be teaching beginning vocational classes in the new WHH Computer Learning Lab. We wish her well and will keep in touch. (comments by Maryanne)
About Anastasia and her career
Miss Anastasia Aba Amoo was born on the 5th of December 1982 in Sekondi an old coastal town in the Western Region of Ghana. She is the first born among a family of six (6) including her favorites personality being her Daddy Mr. Jimmy Amoo and her Mummy Mrs. Eunice Amoo.

She is good Christian and single started basic school in Naval Base from 1988-1997. Her secondary education landed her on the premises of Ahantaman Senior Secondary School (1998-2000). Her undying passion for technology made her enroll as a trainee on computer software at smart computer institute in 2001; this as well led her to practice Journalism with Good News FM Ghana Limited which for her was her life time experience in August 2002.

However her aspiration of working as a full time secretary was not lost but rather boosted after a good outstanding performance in NACVET on English language, typing and office practice in November 2004.

Since then Anastasia has gathered a high volume of working experience as a Secretary and Typist for the Commissioner for Oaths Accra, Typist and Secretary for Westlandes Company Limited, Ghana Railway Company limited, FABI-BRM Wood Processing Company Limited.

Anastasia has certainly placed the sky and even above it as her limit there is therefore the need to upgrade in her limit in her chosen career in order to really hit the sky. She has therefore in this wise decided to enroll in a first class Polytechnic in Ghana Archbishop Porter Girls Polytechnic on Ankaful Road in Elmina in the Central Region of Ghana. Her studies will last for two years after more knowledgeable in her field after a Diploma in Business Studies.

Gist about Archbishop Porter Girls Polytechnic – Elmina
Archbishop Porter Girls Polytechnic is a first class Polytechnic in Ghana. The school is suited on Ankaful road in Elmina. It is just about 45 minutes drive from Takoradi. The school is a Roman Catholic school which only Roman Sisters are teachers. They are very strict in every thing they do at the school. By the time one complete the course, one will be well organized, speak well good English, knows how to use your time, how to dress well as a lady, and how fast a secretary must be and being a good listener.

After you get admission to the school this is the letter the principal will write to all parents/Guardians.

Dear Parent/Guardian,
Admission to the two-year secretarial course
Your ward is welcome to the secretarial course in the above college. I hope she will have a happy and fruitful stay here, and will make the fullest use in every way of the holistic training she will receive.
However, there are so points to which I would like to draw your attention.
1. There are two courses going on simultaneously during the two years as follows (a) The secretarial course for all who gain admission, and leading to two GES certificate – Typing and stenographer, as well as internal college diploma. (b) The Diploma in business studies (DBS-Secretarial Option), for those really interested and who (i) have passed five (5) SSSCE/WASSEC subject, including English, before admission and (ii) show by the end of the first term/year that they have the necessary aptitude and application needed to successfully complete two demanding course together. As DBS includes 4 extra subjects, there will be an extra fee of GH30.00 per term for this course.
2. Only source of income is the student’ fees, and while the fees are kept as low as possible, it is essential for the smooth running of the college that fees be paid promptly. Fees should be paid by Bankers’ Draft only. This is important so as to avoid students carrying large sums of money to college. As well, students often refuse to hand up fees, or else divert part of the fees for their own use, and then ask permission to travel outside the campus, to unknown destination, claiming they are going for the rest of their fees.
3. The Administration will not ask your ward to pay any unusual levies without officially informing you, so ignore any such subject (or the cash to buy them), as these have been kept to the minimum. If it is confirmed that your ward is doing the DBS course, there will be extra books needed. However, each student will need some cash for stationery.
4. It is very important to show an interest in your ward’s welfare and academic progress and pay regular visit to her. Normal visiting times are 1st and 3rd Sundays of the month from 2:30 to 5:30pm; but parents/guardians only are welcome at other reasonable times. Also the staff is always ready to discuss your ward’s welfare.
5. As we firmly believe in discipline and moral training for life, we ask that you co-operate with the college in getting your to face up to the challenges of the course, and not drop out when faced with the slightest difficulty. As well, please see that your ward returns punctually on re-opening day, as the college wastes no time in re-commencing classes, and unpunctuality can seriously retard a student’s progress. As some students’ branch off for one or more night on their way to school. Please let her bring a letter of explanation and/or a medical certificate, if she is late returning. Also kindly avoid asking for or supporting your ward’s demands for extra exeats, unless the matter is gravely important

6. As the college has been built and maintained by the Catholic Archdiocese of cape coast, (with no assistance from government), for disciplinary purposes, we expect all students to abide by the customs and traditions of the Catholic Church.

7. Mobile phones are strictly forbidden during term time; there are land phones available on the campus.

8. Because it is a small college, the health of each student is carefully catered form, and we have several hospitals in the vicinity when required. If a serious health problem arises, you will be informed, so there is no need for her to return home for every little ache, or for you to come rushing to the college to see how she is.

Finally, the college has just begun two projects for its on-going development: (i) mechanizing the bore hole for ease of water supply: GH7020.00 (ii) building a two-story block to include classrooms, a computer laboratory and a library; total cost is GH213, 750.75. The funds we have so far generated fall far short of the total needed, so we are appealing to your generosity for any assistance you or others can give.

Thank you for entrusting your ward to the college, and I hope we will have a very cordial relationship with you during the coming two years.

I wish you God’s blessing on you and yours.

Yours sincerely
Sr. Mary Rita O Mahony

Sep 22, 2008

WHH Girls Move Into their New Quarters

Thanks to a generous grant from Boeing Corporation, and additional funds procured by Ghana Together, the WHH Children's Home in Axim, Ghana has completed a new wing---the "girls quarters." Not only will the additional space provide more privacy and security for the girls, but it will allow WHH to add up to ten more boys or girls to the 21 already in its residential program. Children who are temporarily or permanently lacking a viable family home can find a real home here. Staff conducts in-depth interviews with knowledgable persons, and works with the Nzema Social Welfare Department to assess true need.

The cost for each child averages at about $650 per year, which includes shelter, food, care, and school costs. Ghana Together accepts donations on behalf of these children and forwards all funds directly to WHH for their care.

Shown here are photos of Patrick Kwofie, the WHH Liasion Officer, finishing painting the floor, plus some of the girls trying out their new bunk beds with NEW mattresses and sheets!

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.