Tag Archives: AfriKids

Reading in school

Excelling at reading in Ghana

In Ghana, only two percent of pupils in lower primary school can read at the expected level for their age*. One of the reasons for this is that children often do not have access to age-appropriate books.

A lack of resources in schools can often mean children’s only experience of reading is reading passages their teacher has written on the board.

Our partner AfriKids is using books you have helped to send to change this by setting up reading clubs in some of Ghanas most under-resourced primary schools.

Now, for the first time, pupils are discovering the joy of reading.

Class three teacher Lydia at Laboya Primary School in Zebilla tells us more about the difference that new books are making for the children in her school.

Without the books from Book Aid International, my school’s reading club would have existed merely in name and wouldn’t have been as active as it is now.

I am a class three teacher at Lamboya Primary School and I’m also the school’s reading club patron.

One of my aims as a teacher is to ensure my pupils develop reading habits but this couldn’t happen in the absence of books. We only had very few books in our school library.

Books arriving with AfriKids
Donated books arrive with AfriKids

But the arrival of books from Book Aid International has made it easy for me to enforce my desire.

The books came at a time when we had started our own reading club but having enough books was one of the major challenges. We were unable to carry out reading club activities for lack of books. Now we are able to carry out activities as well as even organise internal and external reading competitions.

Reading session
Pupils gather for Lamboya Model Primary School’s Reading Club

My children’s interest in reading is now heightened because of the availability of the books. Also, I have noticed that my children are more attentive in class and are confident in speech – especially those that read a lot.

Last term, there was a reading competition in our district and my school came first!

*Ghana Education Service

We’re proud to partner with fellow People’s Postcode Lottery-supported charity AfriKids and would like to thank players for their ongoing support of our work.

Reading in school

Books enriching learning in Ghanaian schools

As the holidays come to a close, children across the world are returning to school. For too many of them, there will be no books in school and learning will be a struggle. But thanks to supporters like you, that won’t be the case for pupils at 75 schools in Ghana: their schools will be filled with brand new children’s books.

We caught up with Linda, the Early Years Project Coordinator at our partner AfriKids, to find out more about the difference the books you help to send are making for these children.

 

Classroom
Reading time at Hariya Islamic Primary School

 

AfriKids works in communities in the three northern regions of Ghana. In these rural communities more than half of families live in poverty. Our work is centred on three key areas; education, child protection and health.

With regards to education, the challenges these communities face include schools being so far away that it is difficult for young children to commute to school alone, schools having an inadequate number of age-appropriate children’s books and a shortage of teachers. So our work in education is geared towards ensuring vulnerable children in these communities are able to access and complete quality education.

As part of this, we are using books donated by Book Aid International to support our early years project in 72 schools in the Sisaala East, Sisaala West and Zebilla districts to improve pupils’ reading skills.

The books have enabled us to set up mini libraries in 45 of these schools. Pupils can now borrow books to read. Before, these schools didn’t have reading books.

The best you could get was a few text books which had to be shared by several pupils and in some cases only the teacher had a text book. Now, children who previously had no access to books can now practise reading and discover enriching stories.

The books donated by Book Aid International have enhanced teaching and learning in the schools.

Some of the books are essential for teachers to deliver lessons and without them it would be difficult for them to teach effectively.

 

Reading aloud
A pupil at Lamboya Model Primary School reads aloud to her fellow Reading Club members

 

These mini libraries are helping to improve the reading skills of the pupils – their performance has improved as a result of reading more. Also, activities like reading competitions in the schools increased pupils’ interest in reading and learning. They are also now reading these books at home and this prevents them from engaging in dangerous activities.

Without the books from Book Aid International, thousands of pupils wouldn’t have access to story books and the chance to enhance their reading skills.

Our hope is that the children have access to education and health for a good future. Education holds the key to development to break the cycle of poverty.

 

Book Aid International and AfriKids would like to extend a special thank you to players of People’s Postcode Lottery for their continued support and making this partnership possible.

Photos © AfriKids

AfriKids and Sabre Trust stamping

MEDIA RELEASE: Charities join forces to provide education and reading in Ghana

Book Aid International is pleased to announce that it is donating a total of 7,000 books to support AfriKids and the Sabre Trust’s work raising literacy standards for 4 to 8 year olds in some of Ghana’s most vulnerable communities.

In the regions of Ghana where AfriKids and Sabre Trust work, some studies suggest that just 2% of children can read a simple sentence in English or their mother tongue after 4 years of primary school. The charities are joining forces to support Afrikids’ ‘Foundations for Life’ programme, which aims to improve early literacy in 115 schools by providing training for Kindergarten teachers and form reading clubs in schools. The charities will also implement Sabre’s ‘Transformational Teacher Training’ programme which trains new and existing teachers in active and play-based learning for kindergarten.

The books being provided by Book Aid International include beautiful children’s books full of colourful pictures to help teachers ignite young readers’ excitement about reading and phonics books to help children begin to learn to read. These books will be an important resource for teachers, helping them enrich their classrooms and encourage young children to read. On 1st February, AfriKids and Sabre Trust both joined Book Aid International in their Camberwell warehouse, where together the charities stamped and packed 7,000 books ready for shipping.

Charlie Hay, Chief Operating Officer of AfriKids, explains the difference these books will make in Ghana: “Our early years work is transforming the first experience children have of school in very poor communities. It’s out with passive teaching, boring lessons and the cane, and in with exciting and fun ways to learn that really work and will help children go further in their studies. We’re delighted to be teaming up with Book Aid International to bring these amazing books to children who might never have seen one before, and help them develop a real love of reading and learning.”

Sabre Trust is also excited to be a part of the project. The charity is specifically focusing on the training element of the programme: Dominic Bond, Sabre’s Chief Operating Officer, said: “A major part of the training that the teachers receive revolves around story sharing and early reading skills, to build the foundations from which children can develop their literacy skills in primary school. Teachers are taught about the importance of books in helping to develop children’s language, literacy and imaginative skills. The books donated by Book Aid International will equip literacy centres in over 300 kindergarten classrooms, allowing children free access to storybooks and providing additional titles for teachers to use in their story sharing sessions.”

Both AfriKids and Book Aid International are supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery, and the funding provided by the players is allowing these two small charities to amplify their joint impact. Book Aid International Chief Executive Alison Tweed spoke about her excitement about providing books to Ghana for the first time in many years thanks to players’ support:

“We’re delighted to be a part of helping AfriKids and the Sabre Trust increase early literacy in Ghana. We hope that the books we provide will help these children develop a love of reading which will stay with them throughout their lives, helping them succeed in education and enjoy a lifetime of reading.”

Both AfriKids and Book Aid International extend a warm thank you to players of People’s Postcode Lottery for their support.

Players of People’s Postcode Lottery have supported Book Aid International since 2014 and have so far provided a total of £1,350,000 to support Book Aid International. AfriKids has received £1,125,000 since 2015.

Ends

NOTES TO EDITORS

For further information and comment please contact Emma Taylor, Head of Communications at Book Aid International.

e: emma.taylor@bookaid.org

t: 020 7326 5800

About Book Aid International

Book Aid International is the UK’s leading international book donation and library development charity. Every year, the charity aims to ship around one million brand new books to thousands of communities around the world where people have very few opportunities to access books and read.

Book Aid International works with an extensive network of libraries, schools, hospitals, NGOs and other partners to ensure that the books it sends reach as many people as possible. The charity estimates that the books it provides reach 24 million people every year.

In addition, Book Aid International runs projects which build the capacity of librarians and teachers to support people and communities. Visit www.bookaid.org for more information or join the conversation on twitter: @book_aid.

About AfriKids

  • AfriKids is the leading organisation for child rights in northern Ghana
  • AfriKids’ award-winning work is designed and run entirely by local people, with its UK Registered Charity partner providing oversight to international donors
  • AfriKids’ work includes projects in education, healthcare and child protection (including acclaimed success eradicating child marriage and traditional harmful beliefs in “spirit children”)
  • AfriKids’ work is focused across the three regions of northern Ghana where more than half of all families live in poverty and 1 in 10 children die before their 5th birthday
  • AfriKids is a partnership between a UK charity, founded by Georgie Fienberg, and a Ghanaian Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), founded by Nich Kumah, working together to improve life for northern Ghana’s most vulnerable and disadvantaged children
  • AfriKids has won a number of awards including being named International Charity of the Year 2015 (Charity Times Awards)
  • In 2016, 84p in every £1 donated to AfriKids was spent on the delivery of its life-changing projects
  • AfriKids Limited UK Registered Charity Number: 1141028
  • AfriKids Ghana Registered Charity Number: SWD/3024
  • More information can be found at afrikids.org or by calling 0044 207 269 0740

About the Sabre Trust

  • The Sabre Trust is a leading early years charity working in two regions of southern Ghana to build a brighter future for marginalized and disadvantaged children aged 4-5 years old.
  • Sabre’s mission is to contribute to transforming the life chances of children in developing countries by improving their quality of early years learning, through superior teaching programs conducted in safe, child-friendly learning environments.
  • Sabre’s Brighter Futures programme provides an innovative and carefully considered response to the challenge of access to and quality of kindergarten education in Ghana, through our Transformational Teacher Training and Building Better Schools programmes.
  • The Sabre Trust programmes are fully aligned with the Government’s strategic plans for kindergarten.
  • For every £1 spent on fundraising, Sabre Trust generate £7 to fund their transformational programmes.
  • The Sabre Charitable Trust is a partnership between two independent but linked charities. Sabre Trust is registered in the UK (Charity no. 1105489). The Sabre Charitable Trust Ghana, our sister charity is registered with the Department of Social Welfare in Ghana (Reg. DSW/4852) as a Non-Government Organisation
  • To find out more about Sabre’s work please visit sabretrust.org

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