A Partner West Africa Testimonial
Testimonial 52 of 102
PWA volunteer Debbie working with chidren on an educational arts project

Debbie - UK

Programme Completed: New - The PWA Daycare & Nursery Centre

Date Posted: 16/07/2016

I visited Partner West Africa in early July for a two week volunteer placement, in that time I cannot believe how much we have achieved and fitted in!

I have to say I was really impressed with how forward thinking PWA is in not only ensuring that volunteers that visit with them are given a safe and clean environment but always trying to grow in an innovative way to provide better and better services to even more communities in the area. For me, it was great to come to a volunteer project where we all had a role to complete and were embedded into the staff team fully.

 

 

"I visited Partner West Africa (PWA) in early July for a two week volunteer placement [through their internal volunteering department Volunteer West Africa], in that time I cannot believe how much we have achieved and fitted in!
 
It was great to visit three different communities, all supported by PWA, in various ways:
  1. From the home community of the children from the PWA Daycare and Nursery Centre; Oshieye, which is a small village cramped with people living on a low income and with only very basic resources. A shower is standing in a bucket and washing yourself with a sponge, dinner is cooked on a small fire burner that needs to feed a large family, and a home the size of an average shed is often home to 6 family members with one single mattress to share. I was amazed at how resilient the local people are and when talking to the residents, I could feel that the sense of family and community was a strong influence for survival.
  2. From this to a completely different community; Agbogbloshie, which is a huge 'shanty town' built around and over a toxic dumping site in the capita city, Accra. Here we had an opportunity with PWA to visit a lovely lady Amina, who has a big heart and looks after up to 50 children on a daily basis. PWA works with Amina to improve her home environment and to increase the standards for the children that she cares for daily. Even though the stench of the highly-polluted lagoon in Agbogbloshie, endured while walking through the narrow streets, was uncomfortable and shocking for me - my eyes streamed as they were sensitive to the atmosphere - the people that live their continue with life in a normal way.
  3. And finally, our work took us to Opiekuma, a village that was an inspiration to me as the people are clearly continually striving for change and increasing their own standard of living. It was heart-felt with the little they had, particularly in relation to food supplies - the community is a traditional agricultural community that has suffered from land erosion due to over logging - but what they do have they are only too willing to share with others.
I arrived at PWA with a friend, and we were tasked to provide arts, crafts and baking skills to the PWA Daycare and Nursery teachers and staff and to create cards, hand made by the children through arts & crafts lessons, which the charity can then use to send at Christmas and as thank-you's to the people who support the charity and children. It was a privilege to work with PWA's enthusiastic team, who wanted to improve their knowledge and increase their skills. I really felt valued as both a team member of PWA and rewarded by the commitment offered to us in imparting what knowledge we had.
 
I have to say I was really impressed with how forward thinking PWA is in not only ensuring that volunteers that visit with them are given a safe and clean environment but always trying to grow in an innovative way to provide better and better services to even more communities in the area.  
 
For me, it was great to come to a volunteer project where we all had a role to complete and were embedded into the staff team fully - an approach which is central to the PWA model. We had a debrief most mornings and support was always there if we needed extra help with any problems or solutions.
 
The most shocking reality for me was seeing how people around me were affected by malaria. In my short time here staff and children were often "sick" as they would say. I don't think people can understand how much of an impact malaria has on these communities. Most, if not all the children at the PWA Daycare and Nursery Centre, suffer with malaria at some point. I am always amazed how the children bounce back, but of course here they are lucky enough to receive treatment early on. Other children in the community are not so lucky. It is heartbreaking seeing children come to school "sick" and having to sleep at their desk.  But PWA would prefer they come to school sick so their welfare can be checked, monitored, and if necessary get the correct medical intervention. The PWA Centre is therefore a place of trust and safety and is respected in the community.
 
The site is very near to Kokrobite beach, where we often went to socialise, as well as near to Bojo Beach Resort, offering a day of sun, sea, sand and relaxation, after our hard work. It was great to meet new people, and make new friends.
 
I can only express my true thanks to everyone in the PWA team for taking such good care of us and opening our eyes to an amazing country which is so surreal from my home town in the UK! I will return home with a fuller heart and admiration and support for PWA and the valuable work that they do, I would gladly return if the opportunity arose and would be proud to support this charity in to the future!"
 
 
How can you help?
  • If you would like to also volunteer at the PWA Daycare and Nursery Centre, please click here.
  • If you would like to volunteer or partner with PWA on any of our other projects or programmes, please click here.
  • If you would like to make a donation, of any amount, on a one-off or monthly basis, to the PWA Daycare and Nursery Centre, please click here.
  • If you would like to make a general donation, either on a one-off or monthly basis to our charity, please click on one of the three 'Donation Payment Methods' boxes below. 
  • If you would like to support our charity in any other way - for example by donating goods like children's clothes or materials like mosquito nets, or helping us promote our charity through social media or identifying like-minded potential partners - please download the 'How you can support  us' Brief which is located in the introduction text of our Donate Page here.
  • Or, finally, if you would like to talk to our team about any other issue regarding our charity, our projects, or our volunteering & partnership opportunities, please click here.

Thank you

Donation Payment Methods

CharityCheckout

Charity Checkout accepts all major debit and credit cards and allows you to make one-off or monthly donations that will be used to support our charity in general, so if you would like to donate to a specific appeal, or become a sponsor of our Daycare & Nursery Centre, please follow the donation information provided within those specific appeals. All donations to PWA are regulated by the UK Charities Commission and in line with our Terms & Conditions. Thank you.

JustGiving

JustGiving is a great fundraising site for friends of our charity who would like to set up their own fundraising pages, alllowing your friends and family to donate towards your specific project, aims or objectives with PWA. If you set up a JustGiving fundraising page, you describe your story and reasons for supporting PWA & your donors can link through to PWA's JustGiving page to learn about our charity & its work. All donations are regulated by the UK Charities Commission and made in line with our Terms & Conditions. Thank you.

Direct Bank-to-Bank Transfers

PWA banks with the Co-operative Bank, UK, the leading bank for charitable organisations. If you are a UK or international bank account holder, donations can be made quickly & simply online. You can also use this method to make one-off donations or to set up monthly donations to our charity. Please contact us to request our bank account details to set up a bank transfer. All donations made to PWA are regulated by the UK Charities Commission & made in-line with our Terms & Conditions. Thank you.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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