Conservation Research and Advocacy

Accra Metropolitan Assembly - Accra, Ghana
Quick Facts: Placement ID: IND-303 Location: Accra, Ghana Sector: Wildlife and the Environment Category: Conservation Min Duration: 4 weeks Lodging: BaseCamp or Host Family Language: Basic
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Volunteer Job Description

Urbanization provides many challenges that large cities throughout the developing world are trying to overcome. In Accra, urbanization is rising at an alarming rate. As a result, communities are being populated faster than the creation of infrastructure needed to sustain their massive growth. This creates a challenge in that many places throughout Accra do not have a designated area to put their garbage. Subsequently, beaches and other public areas are being used as a dumping ground for solid waste. This not only creates hygienic challenges but also environmental concerns.

Many beaches and wetlands throughout Accra have become polluted with garbage, plastic, and other materials. This is in part due to a lack of infrastructure but is also due to little education provided to members in the community about solid waste management and sanitation.

Environmental clean-up volunteers are needed to help organize community wide beach clean-ups and provide workshops on solid waste management, sanitation and other environmental endeavours. The Accra Metropolitan Assembly is hoping that through educating the people in their community about these different issues that they will be able to recruit more people from Ghana to help facilitate these workshops and projects thus slowing and eventually stopping the prevalence of solid waste mismanagement.

Environmental clean-up volunteers do not require any specialized academic education at this placement but must have researched all aspects of solid waste management and sanitation so they can successfully contribute informative data at presentations and project sites.

Volunteer Tasks Required

Research

Environmental clean-up volunteers may be asked to help conduct research regarding environmental issues that are impacting Ghana and the greater region of Accra. The results of this research would be used to develop new workshops and educational data that would be used in future presentations.

Community Presentations

Environmental clean-up volunteers would be expected to conduct presentations to various members in the community about sanitation and the importance of adequate garbage, urine and faecal disposal. The presentations would be given at schools, clinics, community groups, market people and the families of youth group members. These presentations would be interactive and adjusted based on the intended audience. Games, skits and creativity are very welcome!

Beach Clean-ups

Environmental clean-up volunteers would have both a conservation and educational component to this placement. They would be expected to work with youth groups to clean the local beaches three times a week and to help to develop a sustainable solution for garbage disposal.

Education Seminars

Environmental clean-up volunteers would have other opportunities to work with youth groups in sports development, entrepreneurship and health and hygiene issues; stressing the importance of keeping their environment clean.

Host Organization Details

Accra Metropolitan Assembly

The Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA), is the city council for Accra. The individuals who are elected to the assembly are responsible for organizing and implementing programs throughout the city, to help improve the lives and infrastructure for the citizens of Accra.

The members of this assembly are responsible for creating community initiatives each year that include projects in a number of areas such as: education, health, medical and waste management. One of their primary GOALS is to assess the needs of individuals in their community and design projects that will help improve their quality of life.

The Accra Metropolitan Assembly has been involved with a number of different projects with the MISSION “...to raise the living standard of the people of the city especially the poor and vulnerable by providing and maintaining basic services and facilities in the area of education, health, sanitation and other social amenities.”

Over the past year, the Assembly has been focusing on educating youth in their communities on a number of different topics. Often, they partner with schools and clinics to assist in developing new programs that they help to fund. These programs greatly benefit the participants. In addition, the Assembly also works with other assemblies throughout Ghana (particularly the North), to help improve the quality of programs in their regions.

Some of the projects that this assembly has completed in the past that have greatly impacted communities in their district include: building libraries, public toilets and schools, organizing and implementing events such as public health awareness talks and ecological restoration projects to ensure historical sites are preserved. In addition, they have been very involved with re-building different infrastructures throughout Accra such as re-building the stalls at a market, re-building a clinic and ensuring that the grounds at the largest bus station had the appropriate structures and amenities to ensure that it was structurally sound.

When They Were Founded

Accra is the Metropolitan, Regional and National Capital and this role places Accra in a very unique position in Ghana.

Historically the Accra Metropolitan Assembly began as a Town Council in 1894. The authorities were from native local government units; made up of non-elected paramount chiefs, sub-chiefs and elders. The traditional rulers served as central figures in local government and were only given powers to pass by-laws.

Though this local administration produced close relationships between the chiefs and the British authorities, it failed to meet the needs and aspiration of the people. Accra was declared a city on the 28th of June, 1961 and became Accra City Council. The Accra City Council was dissolved to become Accra Tema City Council in August 1964.

The Accra Metropolitan Assembly was established in 1993. It is one of the ten District Assemblies that make the Greater Accra Region and one of the hundred and seventy Districts within the Country.

Who They Work With

The Accra Metropolitan Assembly serves the people of Accra. The city is very youthful, with over half of the population under the age of twenty-four. The Assembly is based in Accra, however, they also commonly work and train with other assemblies throughout Ghana to help improve quality programming.

Geographically, the Accra Metropolis covers an area of 173 sq km. The Southern boundary of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly is the Gulf of Guinea stretching from Gbegbeyese to La. It shares a boundary with the Ledzokuku-Krowor Assembly on the East. On the Northern and Western frontiers there are Ga East, Ga West, and the Ga South District.

Structurally, the Accra Metropolitan Assembly is made up of the General Assembly at the apex, followed by eleven Sub-Metropolitan District Councils which are subordinate bodies of the Assembly performing functions delegated to them by the Assembly.

How Are They Funded

The AMA is a governmental organization and therefore is funded by the government. They also receive some funding through private companies. They conduct an educational fund that receives donations from numerous organizations and individuals.

Donation Requests

The Accra Metropolitan Assembly would appreciate donations in the form of clothes, school supplies, medical supplies (gloves, first-aid kits, sterile pads, etc), toys, games, arts and craft supplies. The donations would be distributed to various regions in Accra, which they had determined, had the most need.

Placement Location Information

Accra, Ghana

The Accra Metropolitan Assembly (Sanitation Development Offices) is located in a very large compound. The Assembly is located in the densly populated city of Accra and is at the center of the capital city of Ghana along with many other municipal offices and departments, including the Mayor of Accra's Office.

Before you get there you will see the bank of Ghana which is on the right side, as well as the Ghana Commercial Bank head office.

Before you enter the Assembly compound they have a big gate which is painted green with the coat of arms of Ghana on it. The building has three stories and on the left side of the building is the office of the Mayor of Accra. They have about 15 department offices there as well as one big conference room which is used for court wedding on weekends.

Transfer From BaseCamp

Volunteers will travel from the BaseCamp Center (Pink Hostel) straight to the nearby main road – Ring Road Central. From there, volunteers can take a taxi to the Accra Metropolitan Assembly destination, or take a tro tro (public transportation) but this takes a number of transfers and a bit of walking. Depending on traffic, driving to the destination could take between ten to fifteen minutes, while taking a tro tro would take much longer.

Distance & Time

Distance from BaseCamp: 5 km
Travel Time from BaseCamp: 0:45

Weather in the Area

The dry season in Ghana is from September to March and temperatures generally range from 25-40 degrees Celsius. The rainy season begins in April and lasts until August and the temperature is a bit cooler at 20-35 degrees Celsius. As the name of the season suggests, rainfall increases dramatically throughout these months. It is generally not constant rain, but when it does rain, it usually pours.

Often the weather can change throughout the day. At one moment it is very hot and the next moment it is pouring rain. Volunteers are advised to bring a good waterproof jacket while in this area.

City/Village Description

Accra is a vibrant city that is steeped in history. There is a historical lighthouse in the district of Jamestown; built in 1871, by the British. Climb to the top and enjoy the fantastic view of the Gold Coast. Note the traditional fishing boats and Fort Ussher. Observe the hustle and bustle of Jamestown.

Accra is home to the National Arts Market which provides an opportunity for volunteers to practice their bartering skills for paintings, carvings, bead work, fabric, and many other unique West African Arts.

There are many places to see in Accra. Why not visit one of the many museums? Accra also has an eclectic music scene, with a good beat to be found on almost every corner.

Activities in and around Accra include biking, swimming, catching a soccer game, drumming, dancing lessons, art lessons, and much more.

Nearest Medical Clinic

37 Military Hospital
Liberation Road
Accra
TEL 1: 0302-235110
TEL 2: 030 2767691

Placement Address

Accra Metropolitan Assembly
Atta Mills High Street
Accra
Ghana

Accommodation and Meals

All of our volunteers begin their stay in Ghana at our BaseCamp Center in Accra. Given that this placement is less than a 1 hour and 15 minute commute from BaseCamp, volunteers working here will have the option of living with us at BaseCamp or living with a host family.

The following information outlines a brief description of life at BaseCamp and also what someone can expect living with a host family in Ghana. Once you have completed our application, you can let our staff know if you would prefer to live with a host family. Otherwise, your application will default to having you live with us at BaseCamp.

If you have any questions about the difference between life at BaseCamp or life with a host family in Ghana you can always give us a call or send us an email. Our contact details are listed in the footer of every page of the site.

BaseCamp Ghana

BaseCamp Ghana
BaseCamp Ghana Address

C/O Pink Hostel
5th Crescent
Accra, Ghana

BaseCamp Ghana Contact Details

Tel: 233-243-745-771 (Hostel Number)
Mobile: 233-245-916-108

The BaseCamp Center in Accra is a hostel situated in the residential neighbourhood of Asylum Down. This is a relaxing and peaceful area, away from the continuous activity and hubbub of the tourist district, but central enough that we are within walking distance of many attractions in Accra including the National Museum, Kwame Nkrumah Circle and Adabraka Market.

The centre itself is a three-story building with several dormitory rooms. There are also several quiet areas where volunteers can study and relax including a covered area outside. There is an internet cafe, allowing volunteers to stay in touch with friends and family abroad. In addition to this, free WIFI can be accessed throughout the building.

All volunteers spend their orientation in this centre when they first arrive in Ghana. The workshops and language training take place in this building as well although each day we incorporate outings to learn about the area and how to get around independently.

Living With a Host Family in Ghana

Living with a host family in Ghana is a fantastic way to gain a deep understanding of and appreciation for the people and customs of the country. Each home-stay will provide a bed and three meals per day for our volunteers. The majority of host families offer private rooms with only one or two volunteers living with the family.

Living with a host family can greatly enhance your performance at your placement. For one, it will have a huge influence on the speed with which you gain familiarity with the local language. This, along with your deeper understanding of cultural practices and beliefs that you are likely to gain in this environment, can go a long way to improving or strengthening your relationships with your team mates at work. Furthermore, a significant percentage of our host families are closely affiliated with the organizations with which our volunteers work. As such, even the evening meal or hanging out around the house can become valuable time during which volunteers can share their ideas and continue their support of their host organization.

All of this being said, living with a host family is not for everyone. It is very important for volunteers to honor the house rules in their host family and to be punctual. Also, depending on how remote your placement location, host families can be very rustic. Our staff in country can give you a better idea of what exactly you can expect from a host family in any particular community. However, in general, if these things sound like they might pose a challenge for you, we strongly suggest that you look at a placement within commuting distance from BaseCamp Ghana.

How the Program Works

Our program structure and costing is completely flexible which lets our volunteers ensure that they only pay for exactly the degree of support that they want.

Option 1 - Free Services

Some volunteers prefer to coordinate their own accommodation, meals and other support while overseas.

Anyone is welcome to use our volunteer placement search tool to help in finding a placement that is well suited to their interests. Once someone finds a placement that they wish to work with, they are welcome to make all the rest of their arrangmeents on their own.

As well, our team of staff overseas are often able to offer a few helpful pointers for volunteers 'doing it on their own'. Just send us an email with your questions and we will put you in touch with our team abroad. We only ask that you keep your requests fairly general, as this type of advice is exactly how our team earn their living. :)

Option 2 - Placement Support - 250 USD

Other volunteers would like assistance in selecting and confirming their placement, but they plan to manage their own accommodation and other expenses on their own.

These volunteers have the option of choosing to only have our assistance with selecting and confirming their placement. This option also includes ongoing placement support while abroad, so a volunteer would be able to ask our team for help if things at their placement were not working out.

In providing Placement Support, our team works with each volunteer through email, telephone and either Skype or Google Hangouts, to ensure that each volunteer has a clear understanding of their placement options. Our in-country staff will put together a custom list of placement options for each volunteer that they believe are the most appropriate matches with the volunteer's background, skills and interests. Then each volunteer can work with our team both in Canada and abroad to go through each of the options and narrow-down their selection.

Option 3 - Full Program Support

For most volunteers who are volunteering for less than a year, they are looking for an option that includes their accommodation, meals, airport reception, country and program orientation and placement support. This is what our Program Fees are designed for.

We are proud of how over the years we have ensured that our program fees are amoungst the most reasonable of any program in the world while we continue to provide exceptional volunteer support both at home and abroad.

Our Program Fees and listings of what these do and do not include are listed below:

Program Fees

Program Fees - Ghana

  Registration Fee
250
 
  1 Week
395
 
  2 Weeks
535
 
  3 Weeks
675
 
  4 Weeks
815
 
  5 Weeks
940
 
  6 Weeks
1,065
 
  7 Weeks
1,190
 
  8 Weeks
1,315
 
 
 
  Additional Weeks
120
 
All program fees are listed in US Dollars.

What is Included
  • Pre-Departure support
  • Placement consulation
  • Airport reception & transfer
  • 2 Day orientation
  • Accommodation (BaseCamp or host family)
  • Breakfast and dinner
  • Emergency & placement support

What is Not Included
    Before Departure
  • International flight
  • Travel medical insurance
  • Visa costs where required
  • Work permits where required
    While Overseas
  • Daily transportation to and from placement
  • Transport to airport on departure
  • Placement fees if requried


Program Dates


Our regularly scheduled program start dates are the first Friday of each month, every month of the year. We strongly recommend beginning your program on one of these dates as this will allow you to go through our orientation alongside other international volunteers.

If you would prefer, our application will also allow you to select a custom start date for your program. Keep in mind that there is an additional fee for a custom start date which ranges from 50 to 75 USD.

Nov 01, 2019 Dec 06, 2019 Jan 03, 2020
Feb 07, 2020 Mar 06, 2020 Apr 03, 2020
May 01, 2020 Jun 05, 2020 Jul 03, 2020
Aug 07, 2020 Sep 04, 2020 Oct 02, 2020
Nov 06, 2020 Dec 04, 2020 Jan 01, 2021
Feb 05, 2021 Mar 05, 2021 Apr 02, 2021
May 07, 2021 Jun 04, 2021 Jul 02, 2021
Aug 06, 2021 Sep 03, 2021 Oct 01, 2021

PLEASE NOTE:

These dates are the day that volunteers should plan to arrive on the ground in country. We can accommodate arrivals in-country at any time day or night on these dates.

Give us a Call
Canada / USA 866-646-4693 (toll free)
UK 866-646-4693 (toll free)
Australia 866-646-4693 (toll free)
International 613-353-3000
Send us a Message