Orphanage Childcare Volunteer

Missionaries of Charity - Kumasi, Ghana
Quick Facts: Placement ID: IND-167 Location: Kumasi, Ghana Sector: Social Services Category: Childcare Min Duration: 2 weeks Lodging: Host Family / Lodge Language: Basic
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Volunteer Job Description

Missionaries of Charity has a Orphanage and Home Care facility called the Ashaiman Orphanage & Home in Kumasi, that ensures approximately 40 children and 35 adults are given a safe and comfortable place to live. Many of the children, (ages new born to three years old), are mentally challenged and have been abandoned by their families, while others are strictly abandoned children. Most of the adults have mental development difficulties.

Volunteers are needed to assist with the daily operational tasks in the home,(due to the current lack of adequate staff),thus enriching the lives of the individuals whom live there.

A childcare volunteer at this placement would be expected to participate in many different activities within the facility. One of the volunteer's main duties would be in the overall care of the small children. Since the Orphanage accepts new born to three year old, these children require much personal care and attention. However, the volunteer would also be expected to devote some of his/her time towards the needs of the adults whom reside in the facility, as well as help the staff with routine chores necessary to maintain the centre.

Volunteers are encouraged to develop and implement programs and/or projects that would help the residents to enjoy some of the long hours of each day.

A childcare volunteer at this placement does not require to have any specialized training but must enjoy caring for the needs of others, especially very young children. A volunteer should be a mature individual who realizes that when caring for people who are mentally challenged, a lot of patience and understanding is sometimes required. If the volunteer is considering a career in the health care profession this placement would offer much hands-on experience.

Volunteer Tasks Required

Initiate Projects

The Orphanage and Home encourages childcare volunteers to initiate their own projects, (agreeable to the staff at the home). Why not start group activities to help increase social interaction or create basic literacy lesson plans to help the adults and children learn to read and write? Be creative and bring your own ideas to this very special placement!

Recreational Activities

Volunteers will be able to help design and implement various recreational programs and educational games depending upon the interest of the volunteer and the residents of the home.

A childcare volunteer would be responsible to create new activities; be it songs, games, fun art or craft projects or story telling sessions for the young children. These tasks are really important because the staff usually have little time to devote to these activities and everyone needs time to interact with each other.

Childcare

A childcare volunteer's help is always welcome by the staff at the centre who are constantly busy. Volunteers may be asked to assist with the bathing of the children, dressing them, feeding them, as well as helping to keep them entertained and happy.

Household Chores

The staff are incredibly busy, so they appreciate any help they can get from childcare volunteers with the general cleaning of the orphanage and home, as well as helping in the kitchen, especially at mealtimes.

Host Organization Details

Missionaries of Charity

The Missionaries of Charity in Ghana operate several orphanages in and around Accra, Ghana. In Kumasi, at a place called Ashaiman, is such an orphanage.

At the Ashaiman Orphanage they admit children from new born to 3 years of age, as well as some adults. Many of the children are mentally challenged and have been abandoned by their families, while others are strictly abandoned children. When families are known, some of these children are able to be reunited with them through the efforts of this organization.

The Ashaiman Orphanage has 40 beds for children and 35 for adults. This orphanage/home is run by Catholic missionaries. The home conducts programs for both children and adults. Most of the adults have mental development difficulties and enjoy the art and crafts program at the center. The children are mainly babies and toddlers.

The Orphanages operated by the Missionaries of Charity help people from all over Ghana but especially those people in the northern part. In this region, more than other places in Ghana, most of the children born with disabilities or mental illnesses are considered a curse to the family and therefore are frequently abandoned into the streets.

When and if these children are found by caring individuals and/or organizations, they are frequently taken to the orphanages operated by the Missionaries of Charity who welcome them with open arms and take good care of them.

Does this organization have any religious affiliations?

This organization is affiliated to the Catholic Church and prayers are conducted every morning before the activities of the day start. Volunteers of the Catholic Faith and those of any Christian Faith can pray with them. However, if you are not a believer in Christianity or if you do not wish to participate in any religious ceremonies or prayers it is not necessary that you do so. All volunteers are most welcome and the most important requirement of these volunteers is a desire to help those less fortunate than themselves.

When They Were Founded

The Missionaries of Charity organization was established in Ghana in the 1980's.

Mother Teresa founded the Missionaries of Charity, a Catholic order of nuns dedicated to helping the poor. Begun in Calcutta, India, the Missionaries of Charity grew to help the poor, the dying, the orphans, the lepers and AIDS sufferers in over a hundred countries. Mother Teresa's selfless efforts to help those in need has caused many to regard her as a model humanitarian. Lived: August 26, 1910 to September 5, 1997

Who They Work With

They serve children, adults (usually elderly) found on streets, abandoned and affected by poverty or physical or mental handicaps. Kumasi is a large city in Accra and most of the people at the home are from Kumasi or the surrounding area.

How Are They Funded

This organization was started in the slums of Calcutta, India, by Mother Teresa. This Order serves the destitute, the abandoned and the dying of all Castes and Religions. It survives on the Love of God and by donations given by persons of all Faiths. However, the Catholic Church is their main source for funds.

Donation Requests

Toys, clothes, games, first aid supplies, art supplies, administrative materials (staplers, pens, paper, etc.), any and all of these items would be appreciated.

Placement Location Information

Kumasi, Ghana

Missionaries of Charity is located off the main road of Ash Town in the Kumasi district. The Orphanage consists of a three story building. The ground floor of the building is for adults with special needs. They occupy two of the rooms and the third room is used as a school for the adults. Here, they are taught sign language, and other forms of communication.

The top floors of the building is for the babies and they occupy all those rooms. Each room has about ten bunk beds and babies cribs where they keep the very young children. These kids can be as young as a day to three years old.

They also have a small computer room where the kids go and learn ICT sometimes. This keeps the kids happy and some of them also go there for studies after school. If they have difficulty understanding anything based on the homework they are doing or on the computer, they consult someone like a volunteer or an instructor for help.

Transfer From BaseCamp

Volunteers will travel from the BaseCamp Center (Pink Hostel) by taxi or tro tro (public transportation) to the VIP Bus Terminal, which depending on traffic will take between eight to ten minutes. From there volunteers will take a bus to the city of Kumasi, usually taking between four to five hours.

Once in Kumasi, volunteers will be met by a BaseCamp regional coordinator who will take them to their home stay.

Distance & Time

Distance from BaseCamp: 252 km
Travel Time from BaseCamp: 5:15

Weather in the Area

The dry season in Ghana is from September through March and temperatures generally range from 29-34 degrees Celsius. The rainy season occurs in April until August and is a bit cooler at temperatures of 19-20 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...

They calculate sunshine hours per day using their past forecast data. For August expect the sun to shine for an average of three hours per day. This represents the average number of hours in the daytime that the sun is visible and not obscured by clouds.

City/Village Description

Kumasi is the second largest city in Ghana and the capital of the Ashanti Region. The city is buzzing 24 hours a day, and is home to the large Kejetia Market. Traditional Ashanti pride is much more prominent in this area, and volunteers are likely to see more cultural dress and practices during their stay.

Kumasi is a hub for travellers planning on going in any direction in Ghana, and has good transportation (bus or tro tro) to all major cities. Drivers in the city are aggressive and down town traffic can often be a challenge.

However, all the suburbs around Kumasi are fairly close and walking, (if you're up for a bit of a hike), is never out of the question. The down town core has a few major tourist spots, (Vic Baboo's restaurant and Chopsticks), where you can always find good Western food.

Nearest Medical Clinic

Komfo A. Teaching Hospital (KATH)
Komfo Anokye Road
Kumasi
TEL 1: 03220 22301
TEL 2: 03220 22301-3

Placement Address

Missionaries of Charity
Kwabena Asamoah Street
Kumasi
Ghana

Accommodation and Meals

All of our volunteers begin their stay in Ghana at our BaseCamp Center in Accra. Given that this placement is more than a 1 hour 15 minute commute from BaseCamp, volunteers here will be living with a host family after your orientation. Living with a host family is an awesome experience for a person looking to really experience Ghana and its culture.

The following information outlines a brief description of life at BaseCamp and also what someone can expect living with a host family in Ghana.

If you think that living with a host family is not for you, then this placement might not be the best fit with what you are looking for. You should try completing our application. It's totally free and will allow our team in Ghana to come up with a list of exactly which placements they would reccommend for you based on your personal preferences, background, skills and interests.

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.

Feb 01, 2019 Mar 01, 2019 Apr 05, 2019
May 03, 2019 Jun 07, 2019 Jul 05, 2019
Aug 02, 2019 Sep 06, 2019 Oct 04, 2019
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

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