As part of the VSL ongoing sustainability programme, VSL founders Sam and Dommie Gill spent a week working for Akwaaba Volunteers in Accra, Ghana.

Here is their report on their week supporting these projects….

Akwaaba is a charity supporting children and their families who cannot afford an education, sponsoring 60 children through school and providing after-school sports and additional tuition for around 300 children.

Here are Sam’s reflections on their week:

“We arrived late on Sunday night into the bustling heat and colour of Accra, a sprawling city of some 4m people. The first thing that hit us was the incredible friendliness of the people – a theme that would repeat itself on countless occasions throughout our stay.

What took a little longer to appreciate was that this unerring “joy of life” is surrounded by extremely poor living conditions, with the vast majority of those we met struggling to afford what so many of us take for granted (running water, electric light, to name but two).

We spent five hugely rewarding days working alongside the amazing teachers at the Future Leaders School, with Dommie helping those with reading difficulties and me dusting off my Maths and Geography (long division required a quick refresh on Google!).

On our first day, we also distributed over 60 pairs of pre-owned sports and school shoes together with  a pile of sports kit which we collected in the UK, which were soon fitted and given out, since most of the children do not have the right footwear for school or sport.

The school is one of many projects in the community supported by Akwaaba and we were both moved and impressed by the dedication and impact on the community delivered every day by the founders, King Boateng and Jordan Palmer.

They work tirelessly to make difference to the lives of over 400 children and their families, by sponsoring 60 children through school, providing after school sports and educational support to over 300 more, in addition to assisting several children and families with essential healthcare and rent support.

At the end of our five days, Dommie and I decided to make an initial donation of £5,000 from VSL to support their amazing work and we will be working with them in the coming months to help raise further funds, both through VSL and across our wider networks.”