Thursday, November 17, 2016

Progressive Development on Placement

I did not know what to expect on placement with International Citizens Service (ICS), still I chose to be part of it all after my friend Livingstone Delali Agbo told me it is all about development. My name is Nakobu Abdul-Hakeem and I am a Ghanaian volunteer on the ICS programme. I am here to tell you about some of the developmental process I have witnessed since we have been on Placement.

I am on the Integrated Community Empowerment “Income” Project in partnership with TradeAid Integrated. This project aims to reduce poverty in the northern regions of Ghana by making trade work for the poor. We are working to assist the crafts people of Bolgatanga. The craft community in Bolgatanga is a vibrant part of the city and is something that everyone should be proud of and exhibited to the rest of the world.

In light of this, we started our project by dividing ourselves into three teams, which are, Administration Team, Training Team and BICAF Team. All Teams are assigned different tasks, but all aim to achieve a common objective.

I was on the Administration Team for the first two weeks. Our job was to manage the media and administration jobs of the whole team, some of the jobs include:  


-Share crowd funding page, BICAF page and event

-Post on EXPAT and other Ghanaian groups

-Continue #IAMBICAF Social media campaign

- Keep uploading updates on team’s work (photos and posts) on INCOME account

- Recognize International Observance Days

-Upload more photographs/video on all accounts


-Update with details of BICAF closer to the event

Email- Partnerships/Sponsorships

-Email smaller lifestyle magazines for promotion

-Email Fair-trade companies for sponsorship

-Reply to any emails


-Ensure blogs are posted every week

Regional Minister

-Contact Regional Minister’s Office.

-Organize filming with the Regional Minister


-Design, Print and Distribute flyers and posters for BICAF.

On weeks 4 and 5, we were on the BICAF team. BICAF is Bolgatanga International Craft and Arts Fair. Here my team was tasked with the organization and advertisement of the event. Our job was to:

 Sponsors & Promotions

-Write and send letters for Sponsorship and Promotions.

- Put up posters and hand out leaflets of BICAF.

Awareness Raising

-We run an awareness raising session at the Church of Pentecost.

- Follow up on letters sent to Churches.

 - Follow up with Central Mosque to raise awareness.

- Work with the event organizer in-charge of the BICAF entertainment.

- Follow up on Jingle so it will be aired closer to BICAF


- Continue to follow up registrants/possible registrants for BICAF.

- Follow up with food vendors for BICAF.

- Keep contacting Shea butter communities. 

After a very challenging, demanding, fun, educative and developing five weeks on placement, we were now on the Training Team. Here we were responsible for the trainees on the Apprenticeship Scheme. We make sure they have all the resources and funds needed to keep the scheme running. We were also responsible for the post evaluation of the training of the use of “Daboya” Dye organized the previous Training Team (Dylan, Mary and Sakina), which was very successful.

In week 7, we organized a Marketing Training for the Yebongo Weavers Groups, the training was very successful. At the training we realized the groups did not know much about book/records keeping, and as a result, they did not know the number of baskets they have produced since they started the groups.
Marketing  session with Yebongo Basket Weavers
They also did not know if they were making profits or losses. So we recommended book keeping training sessions for the groups to the next training team.

There were several activities that all teams participated in. Some of such activities are;

-Community entry/visit to all partner craft groups.

-Visit to the Bolgatanga Craft Village to advertise and get people to register for BICAF.

-We had a radio session at Ura Radio, where we talked about advance business strategies with representation from all teams.

Radio sensitisation at URA Radio

-We visited the Paga Slave Camp, where we toured and partnered them for BICAF. But a partnership with the Paga Crocodile Pond was not successful.

-All teams participate in very interesting and educative guided learning sessions every Friday.

-On Fridays, all team members meet, drink and talk about all that happened within the week and what to do differently next time. We go to the Pool under supervision of Team leaders on some weekends.
Forming partnerships with Paga Slave Camp

In summary, I say “global development is like a web” in other words, a problem in any part of the world is a problem all over the world. Everyone should take part in ICS or in GLOBAL DEVELOPMENT in general.      

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