This project will aid the construction a Girls’ Hostel at a Senior High School (SHS). The Free SHS policy in Ghana has dramatically increased the number of boarding students attending the school to 350 during the 2018-2019 academic year. The school has re-purposed the community library to use as a girls’ hostel, but there is currently no dedicated structure to house students and the library facilities are massively insufficient to meet the needs of the school. Furthermore, it lacks accommodations for a teacher to live with, supervise, and ensure the safety of the students. This jeopardizes the well-being of female students in the event of violence, health, and crime and deprives students of adult female mentors who can guide them. The school has a record of supporting girl’s education, especially through the formation of a Girls’ Club in 2018.
Recent meetings between community leaders, chiefs, the Parent-Teacher Association (PTA), and the school administration have identified this project as a top priority for the school.
We aim to construct a Girls’ Hostel that will:
(1) provide students with safer and higher-quality accommodation,
(2) help the school meet the increased housing demands resulting from the Free SHS policy, and
(3) help the school achieve boarding-school status to bring further development to the school and improve academic performance through increased opportunity for academic contact time.
The community and school will contribute 25-30% of the total cost of this project through a combination of financial and in-kind donations. The community leaders and chiefs will dedicate communal labor and land to the project, and the school administration and Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) will lead fundraising drives. The community has a long history of supporting the school through donations of structures and resources as it experiences a significant cash crop harvest as one of the most productive cashew-farming districts in Ghana. Currently, the community has been immensely supportive of the effort led by the PTA to build a Boys’ Hostel. Students interested in learning masonry and carpentry and who wish to donate their efforts to the project will also take part as the community contribution.
The project will have long-lasting beneficial impact on the school and the broader community. By providing high-quality and safe accommodation for female boarding students, we will support and advance the education of women so that female students can complete senior high school and go on to lead more successful lives. We aim for our female students to be successful in both their personal and professional lives, and providing safe, high-quality housing with adult female supervision and mentorship will advance these objectives. Additionally, the community library will no longer house students and can be rededicated to serve its original purpose.
This project will create a static structure that is expected to stand for at least fifty years and will require minimal resources to upkeep. The school will dedicate operational funds from Ghana Education Service for the management of the structure after its completion. We will sustain the benefits of the Girls’ Hostel (that is, greater opportunities for educational and personal development) by dedicating an adult female from either the teaching staff or the community to live at the hostel and supervise and mentor the students. The community has a long history of supporting SHS since its founding in 2010, and the continued development of SHS is the strongest contributor to this project’s sustainability. The community has added several classroom blocks, opened their homes and re-purposed community structures to house students, and supported SHS’s programs, excursions, and academic resource development. In exchange, SHS has supported the community by giving its youth educational opportunities close to home and by bringing in a large population of young people to support communal labor, the local economy, and nearby farms. We expect this mutually beneficial relationship to continue with the Girls’ Hostel serving as just the most recent part in the continuing growth for both SHS and the community, and this continuing growth will advance the academic and personal development of SHS students for the foreseeable future.