Lattitude Blog

Cape Coast Week 8 by Gifty

Hello guys my name is Gifty Martey , I would like to update you on what latitude ICS has been doing within week 8.

On Thursday morning, we had a coreprograme with a local school in Antem. Class 4 and JHS1. We start class 4 core programe around 8:15am to 8:50 am and 10:30am to 11am for the JHS1 programe. Where we teach them some lessons on Health, Social and Soccer.

Later in the afternoon, we had a culture presentation from the Ashanti region by Nana Boakye, Benjamin and Gifty. Unfortunately Gifty was not feeling well so she couldn’t do it with Nana and Benjamin but it was successful. We learnt about their way of culture and who an Ashanti is, the way they dressing. One Ukv was called to learn how the Ashanti’s wear their cloth on their body.

We went back to the center to prepare for our homework club section at 4pm then we close at 5pm.

Friday was a holiday because it was a farmers day but we went to the office in the morning to have a meeting on welcoming our other team members from abrobiano going then we went back home.

Cape Coast Week 7 by Abigail

On Friday, the teams from Cape Coast and Abrobriano travelled to Ho in the Volta region for our mid-placement review. The coach journey took more than 6 hours, but luckily we were able to stop off in Accra at a pizza restaurant for a break. Even though the journey was so long, the hotel was well worth the wait when we finally arrived. We had air-condition in the rooms, a shopping mall within the hotel, and even a swimming pool. During the day, the team leaders and coordinators delivered presentations on various different topics, including a review of what each team had done so far, a review of our host homes, and a session on how to write our case studies. These sessions were really useful, and left us feeling positive about the rest of the placement. When it was time to leave on Sunday afternoon we were all feeling refreshed, energized, and ready to continue with our work – although it would have been nice to be able to stay at the hotel for a few more days!
Once we had returned to Cape Coast, it was time to go back to work. We have the registration gala and street-walk for our Female Street League this Saturday, so we have been busy preparing for that to make sure everything will run smoothly on the day. We’ve also been continuing with homework classes and also the extension of the core programme to some of the local schools in the area. Working with my JHS1 class and the children who come for the core programme has been one of my most rewarding and enjoyable aspects of the placement so far, and I hope it will continue to go successfully.

Cape Coast Week 7 by Giyas

Week 7 was very enriching and entertaining, lots of captivating activities took place.
The groups in Cape coast and Abrobiano set off on Friday to the Volta regional capital Ho, to have our Mid Programme Review (MPR).Even though, the 6 hour journey was stressful, it was nice to meet the group of volunteers from Abrobiano once again and so we had a lot to talk about. We arrived in Ho and checked into one of the finest Hotel in the city called chances hotel. It was a wonderful opportunity for us to share our experiences on the programme so far, bond as a team and also refreshed our minds for the rest of the tasks. From the engaging sessions we had to those exciting nights by the swimming pool,I can confidently say on a whole the two (2) day MPR was a huge success.
The team got back to capecoast on Sunday night. As usual on Monday we were all at work and we had our team meeting to plan on the activities for the week. The discussion centered on the preparations for the female street league registration on Saturday the 29th November, 2014. So, on Wednesday the media team visited a local radio station to create more awareness on the league. This was followed by the events team speaking to community leaders on the upcoming event and handing out invitation letters to schools within our catchment area. By Friday, all the teams had executed their assigned duties and all set to have a successful street parade, female gala and registration of participants for the female street league on Saturday.
Throughout the week, the homework club,community schools integration and the ever green water sachet net project continued, we also had our first successful movie night on Thursday which turned out really well. Overall, this week has been activity packed with lots of excitement. All these could not have been possible without the individual fortitude of volunteers and the collective efforts of teamwork.

WEEK 8 BLOG BY JEREMIAH+TEIKO

The week started on Monday, the 1st of December 2014, at 8:30am to plan for our projects and events as well as the usual reports when our coordinator suggested if we could have a farmers’ day celebration in Abrobiano instead of our Abro’s got talent event scheduled to take place on the 14th December. Most members of the team liked this idea and voted in favour. We therefore swapped the committee responsible for our usual event which is ‘Abro’s got talent’ to organize this event as an alternative. The idea of visiting cape coast on a Friday was also scrapped at the meeting since the group later decided to visit on a Saturday instead.

After lunch, the group started preparations towards the farmer’s day celebration by sorting out the venue, prizes and sketches that would be highlight on proper footwear. At 4 o’clock, Sharome and Kenneth had their ACD on poverty and action against poverty. The team then dispersed at 5pm

On Tuesday, Edem and Shavey acted as team leaders, work begun at the 8:30am to continue planning for our events, we further split into three groups and we visited farmers on their farms to sign them up for the event.

Later that day, we practiced and acted out the sketches we would be performing on the day of the event, Suzzy also took the group through some dance rehearsal. At 4pm we had our usual team meeting with a general update on the affairs of the various committees in the team.

On Wednesday, Shavey, Edem and Tom left the community very early to get the prizes for our event on Friday, the team went for the Wednesday worship workshop (WWW), those with the Junior High School talked about abortion, whereas the others with the primary schools talked about exercise, the importance of exercising and a demonstration of certain exercises. The infrastructure team met a mason to discuss about refurbishing some of Islamic primary school classrooms.

At 2pm we went to the office to cut water sachets and repaired the damaged football net. At 6pm we had our community health talk which was delivered by Sharome, Selorm and Edem on the concerns in Abro

Sachet net under mending by the team

On Thursday we met at 8:30am to continue signing the farmers up for the raffle on the farmers’ day as well as to have a final rehearsal on the sketch and the traditional dance. In the afternoon, the team mended the sachet net and later at 3pm; we had our MCD by Naomi and the Bridget on funerals in Ghana. We later had a team meeting to discuss the upcoming event which is the farmer’s day, giving out roles to each other and how to go about the raffle as a whole. Mr Henry, the Lattitude Ghana manager witnessed the session.

On Friday we met at the church at 11am to pick canopies and chairs as well as to set the venue up for the pending event. The main event started at 2pm which was very successful and worthwhile.

Sharome and Caroline dressed for the cultural performance on the farmers’ day

Cultural performance by the team

A farmer receiving his award

On Saturday, the team met at 7am to get the bus to cape coast where we stopped by Kakum National Park to experience the canopy walk and Hans cottage to see the crocodiles. We arrived at the football for hope centre at 1:30pm, had lunch and the football completion which climaxed the visit and generally it was a marvelous competition.

The Star Volunteer of the week went to Selorm an ICV

WEEK 7 BLOG KEZIA&CAROLINE

This week started at 9am on Monday with Community Engagement. The theme for this week was Healthy Eating. The team aimed to find out what the practices in Abrobiano on Eating healthily, issues as eating regular foods and having a variety in their diet. Also advising on water issues, drinking only clean boiled water.

Community engagement getting exciting

We continued this over Tuesday and Wednesday at 9am each morning until 11am. On Monday afternoon we also continued working on our water sachet football net, which we are very close to finishing. We then further discussed some issues in our ACD – Community development as a group led by Caroline, Suzzy and Jeremiah.

The Team’s ACD

On Tuesday we had Naomi and Tom acting as Team Leaders for the day, taking charge of the day’s program. We also held peer education session, which was on the topic of Life skills facilitated by Teiko and Kezia. Within this session we did a creative session making necklaces and bracelets out of the shells from the beach. The session was well attended and successfully and the pupils very much enjoyed themselves, giving them a change to be creative which they don’t really do in school.

On Wednesday all volunteers went to the schools to partake in the Wednesday worship workshop (WWW). Within this we had 10 minutes to engage the pupils on certain topics. We attended three schools, Abro Primary, Islamic and JHS. The topic taught in the primary schools was Rubbish and sanitation and in the JHS, the topic taught was Teenage pregnancy.
Future coming topics in the primary schools are, Exercise, personal hygiene and HIV/AIDS. The next topics taught in the JHS are on Abortion, HIV/AIDS and HIV/AIDS testing. In the afternoon the sports day committee continued to organize the sports day event, taking part on this coming Saturday. As well as this, the sketch groups also planned their individual sketches for the sports day event, which were focusing on Waste disposal and food hygiene.
From 4pm we did our football training on the pitch, which was lots of fun!
In the evening, Joanne and Naomi held the weekly social at their house, with music, dancing, pineapple, watermelon and drink, as well as some delicious sausages!

On Thursday morning we finished the football net, attaching it to the goal post this was a great success and works very well. Especially for the sports day event which took place on the Saturday.

Sachet net woven unto the football pole by the team

Within the afternoon we had My Culture Day (MCD) held by Jeremiah, and he educated us on Jamaica as this is his culture. We all learnt a lot of things from this, for example – what each of the colors mean in their national flag. We also had our football training.
On Friday, a few people visited cape coast to get the prizes and awards for the Sports day event and the food vendors.

Saturday is our Sports Day health awareness event for the community, focusing on Rubbish and Sanitation. The day started at 8am, setting up and the games began at 1.30pm. Starting the day with lime and spoon race, sack race and t-roll running which the local school children participated in and thoroughly enjoyed. We also had to sketches throughout the day, educating the audience on waste disposal and food hygiene. After there were two football matches, Abro Primary and Islamic schools played against each other, the score from this was 1:0 to Abro Primary. The second football match was between L attitude ICS volunteers and the JHS team, the score from this was 1:0 to JHS. The football was a huge success and everyone came on board. For all the participants taking place were given prizes, as well as certificates to the schools. The winners of the Football matches received a soap stations for their Efforts.

The team demonstrating the T-roll race to the contestants

On Sunday was our free day, chilling in Abrobiano. Until 4pm when we had a food venders workshop, with a health personnel from outside Abrobiano coming in to educate the vendors. They received prizes, such as aprons, utensils and certificates. The vendors who attended the workshop were very engaging and enjoyed themselves.

Sports day winners showing their presents

The star volunteer of the week was Edem an ICV for his hard work and morale boosting jokes on the team.

It was all about the Sports day…

Week 6 Blog by Suzzy + Michelle

Mid-Placement Review in Ho

This week started at 9am on Monday with Community Engagement. Since rubbish disposal and open defecation are big issues in the community, the theme for this week was rubbish and sanitation. The team aimed to find out what the practices in Abrobiano are and to hopefully be able to offer advice related to these topics, including highlighting the dangers of open defecation on the beach. On Monday we also continued working on our water sachet football net, which is coming along very nicely! We further discussed some issues in international development as a group led by Edem during his Active Citizenship learning Day (ACD).

ACD presentation

On Tuesday we did not carry out community engagement as usual, but instead showed our support at a school sports day where Abro Primary and Islamic Primary both played football. We also took this opportunity to talk about our own upcoming Sports Day, which will take place very soon. We are hoping to have finished our water sachet football net by then! On Tuesday we also held peer education session, which was on the topic of Ebola and Cholera led by Michelle and Selorm. The session was well attended and successfully discussed both transmission and prevention. The peer educators are pupils in Abrobiano who have volunteered to learn more about life skills including ICT, CV writing and health issues, and who in the future will be able to educate their peers on these issues.

Team Leader Platform day meeting led by Tom and Naomi

On Wednesday we continued with community engagement under the same topic, and we then did some planning for the upcoming Sports Day which will take place on Saturday 29th of November 2014. More on this later! During our weekly Wednesday social we played some games and enjoyed some delicious Sobolo (fruit juice) and plantain chips (crisps).

On Thursday we continued with planning the Sports Day, which will also be an awareness-raising event on rubbish and sanitation. Various duties and responsibilities were allocated amongst the group in preparation for the big day. During My Culture Day Shavey and Joanne discussed the differences between England and Scotland, with the team doing various activities throughout the session. It was emphasized how England and Scotland are very different to each other, but that they also share many similarities.

Week 6 has been special, since the team from Friday to Sunday attended our Mid-Placement Review (MPR) in Ho in the Volta region.

Relaxing mood by some volunteers at the MPR

We left Abrobiano at 7am on Friday and picked up the Cape Coast team on the way, arriving at Chances Hotel in Ho at 4pm. During MPR the two teams reviewed our placements so far, including what has gone well, what has not gone so well and the challenges that we have faced. During the weekend we also discussed cultural differences, our best, worst and funniest moments of our first six weeks in Ghana, and how to write a good case study of our personal and team volunteering experiences. Last but definitely not least, the showers were very appreciated by the Abrobiano team after five weeks of no running water.

MPR Group discussion

Kezia a UKV was voted the star volunteer of the week.

Some group of volunteers presenting during a session at the MPR

Cape Coast Week 6 by Michael

On Saturday morning, the team taught the core programme at the centre, based on the curriculum the kids were taught the heart under Health, honesty under Social, and how to head a football under Football. Once this had been completed and all the children had returned home, we went on an excursion to the Kakum National Park, an area of tropical rainforest about 20 miles north of Cape Coast. It covers nearly 150 square miles of land, and hosts a wide array of wildlife like elephants, monkeys, and many more. It also features a canopy walkway that is 350 metres long, allowing visitors to walk near the top of the trees. Although some of us were very afraid of heights (for example, our Team Leader Lukman), most overcame their fears and completed the canopy walk, and we all had great fun. After Kakum, we also visited Hans Cottage Botel, a hotel and restaurant by a lake populated by about 40 crocodiles. I’m not sure if this attraction would have passed the health and safety standards of the UK, so some of us were a little bit worried as we walked just a few feet away from the crocs as they swam or fed. That said, it was great fun to see them up close, and some of us even managed to get pictures of ourselves stroking one as it slept. One of our team members, Gifty, had celebrated her birthday earlier that week, so after our day out we visited her host home for her birthday party. Her host mum Mama Joyce was very hospitable and provided all the guests with drinks and even a slice of a delicious birthday cake. It was a nice celebration, and afterwards the members of team who weren’t completely worn out by the day’s activities carried on the party at Oasis, one of the local bars/clubs. It was a very long and tiring day, but one of the most enjoyable I’ve had so far in Ghana. On Monday, it was back to work. Throughout the week we continued with the constant activities at the centre – i.e. the after-school homework club, and the core programme, which has now been extended to some of the local schools during their P.E. lessons. The teaching is going well, and I think most of the volunteers are now feeling comfortable and settled in their roles. Another focus of this week was to carry out our community surveys, designed to identify the barriers to employment for those aged 16-22. In our counterpart pairs we went out into many different communities in Cape Coast, and carried out the surveys door-to-door. I found the process to be very interesting and informative, particularly when visiting some of the less affluent areas where many of the children who visit the centre live. Between us all we collected more than 100 survey responses, which should provide lots of useful data for our Monitoring & Evaluation committee to analyse. Finally, we were also treated to some brilliant presentations from our fellow team members, as part of the ‘Learning Day’ and ‘My Culture Day’ exercises. On Tuesday, Esenam and Alex gave a thought-provoking lecture on the role of women in society, which was very informative and sparked a lively debate between the group. Then, on Thursday afternoon, Christie and Janet taught the group about the Krobo people, showing us the naming ceremonies and the Dipo (puberty rites) that traditionally occur in their culture. This was followed by a presentation on Scotland by Alex, in which she explained about the history and traditions of the country. Both presentations were very interesting, and I learned many things that I didn’t know about these two very different cultures.

WEEK 5 BLOG- SHAROME AND AGNES

The week started off at 9 am with our weekly community engagement task. The topic treated was malaria. Each pair had to move to their areas assigned to them. The team agreed not to meet at the office this week at 11 due to some concerns about getting a little bit weary after walking through the community.

Between the hours of 2 and 5pm, we had our usual team meeting where we continued with the completion of water sachet nets for one hour. Tom, Naomi and Kezia were the facilitators for our Active Citizenship Day on the topic. ‘International Development 1 ’. Their main focus was: Explaining the term ‘Development’, the Millennium Development Goals, the Role of Youth in Development as well as Community Development.

Team Leader Platform Day was here again! This time round, Bridget and Jeremiah had the opportunity to man the affairs of the day. Team members went about their community engagement duties again.

We met at the office to have our daily meeting at 2pm. The first hour was dedicated to continuing the sachet nets which we intend to use as a football net for Abrobiano. The team leaders for the day then took over the rest of the meeting. They had the various roles update with the whole team.

Sachet net weaving in progress

The community engagement was carried out as usual. In the afternoon, our daily meeting was held where we spoke about various issues and about the boat race. We had relaxed evening Zoe’s and Teiko’s socials. We played a lot of games and had some fruits as well as cookies.

On Thursday MCD was carried out by Ken, Suzzy and Caroline where they spoke about traditional dressing, Kente. The Kente originally is ‘KE NA TE’ which means ‘open and close’. Additionally a French class was held in the office for the volunteers but we were joined by the kids from the schools.

Finally on Friday we carried on with the sachet nets for quite a long time then we continued with the team meeting which involved discussions about the boat race, roles and responsibilities from the volunteers. The star volunteer of the week vote want to Teiko an ICV who was acclaimed as hard working especially when it came to the boat race event organization.

The boat race event

On Saturday the main focus was on the boat race for the community which turned out to be a big success! The boat race was aimed at raising health awareness on certain topics which were ‘Rubbish and sanitation’, ‘Keeping our water bodies clean’ and Cholera.

A sketch on keeping our sanitation clean

Presentation of Prize to the winners of the boat race event

Week 4 Blog by Kenneth+Shavey

The team started the week with the talk of Cape coast’s team visit to Abrobiano.

Some team members on their way to the house to house visit

Some team members on their way to the house to house visit

This week marked the start of our community engagement (house to house visit) which last 2 hours, from Monday to Wednesday and aims at teaching our health messages directly to households and befriending the people of Abrobiano through an ICV UKV pairings. This was to establish relationships with the community which the project may not have reached out to previously whilst bringing in underlying health messages week by week. This week’s topic was on Personal Hygiene and basic health practices. Although the language barrier created some difficulties, most households were very welcoming. Some even offered food to the volunteers! Some had questions about the project. Others wanted a solution to the limited water supply as many get their water from unclean sources like the lagoon! We advised people to filter/boil their water to kill the germs in it!

Some team members on their house to house visit with a household

Some team members on their house to house visit with a household

 

Limited water is a huge problem we are keen to solve in this cycle, with plans to install a polytank for the community! There have also been suggestions to put guttering around the communal buildings for rainwater collection! This was suggested after being engulfed in a huge thunderstorm on Wednesday evening! The majority trudged home on the stream-like roads in a small break in the rain. But some had to walk through the storm, getting soaked from head to toe in the process! This led to peer education & radio talks being cancelled.

To our relief, the rain passed in time for the evening social. Kenneth and Tom produced a magnificent amount of popcorn which made some of the games we played very competitive! The popcorn was indulged by all, especially Selorm and Edem who hid popcorn wherever, whenever it was passed to them! Weaving of the sachet net started on Thursday by the whole team.

Water sachet net weaving began

Friday evening brought a rather long team meeting. It helped us air some difficulties the team felt we were experiencing as a group. All problems were relatively small but were growing in number which was affecting team morale and dynamics. Everyone contributed and all left their bitter feelings a lot happier.

The weekend marked the visit of the Cape coast team to Abrobiano. We all awoke early to prepare food, collect coconuts and prepare a gazebo & chairs around the office. Preparation was running behind time. The Cape coasters were on time (the first time ever on project).

Cape coast + Abrobiano cycle 4 ICS teams.

Cape coast + Abrobiano cycle 4 ICS teams.

They were on time and half the team met and greeted them on arrival before taking them back to their homes. Some were surprised at how basic our conditions were! A short food delay later and we sat down for an excellent lunch cooked. Cape coast won both games, 4-0 & 3-0 and probably had the noisier support because of it. Tired we went back for food and showers before returning to the beach for a chilled fire and a few drinks. They left early the next day and from here we chilled!

Cape coast team excited after winning Abrobiano in the football match

Cape coast team excited after winning Abrobiano in the football match

Shavey and Teiko facilitated their ACD on Diversity and Teamwork, Michelle and Caroline became Team leaders on Tuesday for the Team leader platform day, we furthered our Fante Skills with Ken and Edem and my culture Day (MCD) Kezia and Tom did their Culture day on bonfire night in the UK. The week ended with the star volunteer vote which went to Shavey.

 

Cape Coast Week 4 by Christiana

Its really amazing, weeks are gone yet we the 4th cycle volunteers of Lattitude ICS still keep the passion to challenge ourselves to change our world. We therefore travelled all the way from Cape Coast to Abrobiano, and there we the ladies from cape coast had to compete with the ladies of Abrobiano in a football game.
It was pretty a great challenge, nevertheless we kept the record of cape coasters always winning against Abro.
Oh yes! We did it again with four goals against the ladies and our guys also scored three to win. So it was 4-0 win for the girls and 3-0 win for the boys. All these took place on the 8th of November, 2014.
We set off for cape coast the next morning. On our way we visited the Elmina castle and there we learnt a history.
Linda and Rochell also made us have fun by sharing with us how they celebrate the Notting hill carnival or festival in the U.K. as their Culture Day presentation. it was on thursday, the same day. 13th of November in the afternoon Giyas and Millicent projected on their fire festival by the people in the northern part of Ghana. And after all day hardworking we shared the happiness with Gifty on her birthday that same evening.