Thursday, 1 September 2016

Tamale – Empowering a people … preserving heritage

By Barbara Gardner, 2nd year MDP student

Women attending 1st aid training - Nanton-Kurugu
Working with the officers and the various local communities around Tamale is proving to be quite rewarding. By attending training sessions and workshops it has become clearer that women, while respecting their heritage, are becoming more empowered through the training provided by RAINS. For example, health information training with women was critical in highlighting unsafe  practices of first aid care for their children.  

I also had the privilege of assisting with the preparation of a project proposal aimed at improving use of essential health services including comprehensive family planning.  If funding is granted, it will target women and girls of reproductive age as well as children up to 5 years.

Camp counselor, Barbara (far right)
While my primary focus was working at Regional Advisory Information and Network Systems (RAINS), I did find some time to volunteer at an annual Kids Camp in Tamale.  The children came from all over the Northern region of Tamale and for the first time they catered to Muslim as well as non-Muslim children who are housed at a lodge and chaperoned by adults over a five day period. The main aim of the camp is to foster togetherness despite religious beliefs. They are engaged in craft, dancing and sporting activities as well as participating in spiritual activities. It was encouraging to see children of all backgrounds interacting and forming bonds of friendships during the course of the week as well as learning from each other.

Through these interactions, I have learnt so much more than I ever could from reading books which depicts the happenings both culturally as well as sustainable development within Ghana. It also reaffirmed for me, that while my ancestors may have been from Africa, the Caribbean and Western experience, which has shaped my development, is very different from anything observed during this placement. 


A gathering of the more than 400 children

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