Self-Help International

Self-Help International (SHI) devotes its efforts to alleviating world hunger and poverty by providing opportunities to rural citizens that ultimately lead to self-reliance. Since its inception, Self-Help has served as a vessel; training, education, and opportunities are provided to rural citizens and whole communities in developing countries so that they can have better lives. MISSION STATEMENT: To alleviate hunger by helping people help themselves. SELF-HELP'S INITIATIVE Educate: We educate the people of the United States to understand the problems of life in developing countries particularly the awareness of the perpetual struggle by millions to produce and distribute food to battle p...
Mar 7, 2013

Education for Akosua's kids

Akosua
Akosua's pottery

Akosua Ehu is the leader of a small group, but the size of her group does not adversely influence their ability to be successful in various ventures including pottery making and large scale farming. With only three other women in Akosua's group, many might assume they have had little influence in their community but surely her seven kids would have to disagree. In the last eight years, Akosua has taken out 14 loans to increase her inventory of clay for her pottery business but more importantly, to pay for her children's school fees. 

"With the loans, I have been able to send some of my kids to learn various apprenticeship trades," said Akosua.

With many of her kids now working or taking apprenticeships, Akosua has decided to put more resources into expanding her business. She has the contacts already as her business has been around for a long time but she has been unable to buy in large quantities and keep costs down.

Her goal is to expand her business by purchasing larger quantities of firewood and clay to produce more pottery to sell at the nearby markets. She is not interested in another type of business or training because she says "[Pottery making and selling] has more potential if well developed."

Over the past eight years as she has expanded her business, she has continually recognized how to further expand and stay on top of her expenses to continue earning money to pay for her children's school fees.

Your continued support is greatly appreciated. It helps women like Akosua grow their businesses and in turn keep their children in school.

Links:

Feb 6, 2013

Training Center Nears Completion

Ghana Training Center
Ghana Training Center

In January I visited the training center, and was very impressed with its progress. Furnishings are coming in for the classroom, and the first training session begins March 1. What we need to get started is support to purchase 250 day-old broiler chicks, 250 day-old layer chicks,10 rabbits and three pens!  Hope you can help as word is getting out to young adults about the training center!

The classroom holds room for 25 trainees, and already 37 applicants have registered to learn poultry and rabbit production! When meeting with several young adult men and women, it was exciting to see their enthusiasm and belief that this opportunity will increase their income so they can stay on the farm! 

Self-Help is blessed to have six Ghana professionals volunteering time and talent to teach trainees about vaccinations, maintenance and proper care. The Self-Help staff has prepared power point presentations for each session that demonstrate details required of each animal, bird, or product. The visit to the center was very special, and the plan is to extend the fall training session to include mushrooms.

Thank you for your support, and we hope that you continue to recognize the importance of keeping young adults on the farm. Our project strives to achieve that!

Chicken Coops
Chicken Coops

Links:

Jan 22, 2013

KOBRITI CONTINUES CRUSADE

Kobriti Kindergartners Enjoying Breakfast
Kobriti Kindergartners Enjoying Breakfast

Kobriti is a small farming village of 500 inhabitants, 7.5 miles from the district capital Ejura. The inhabitants are predominantly settler-farmers who migrated from the northern part of Ghana. Typical of most rural communities, Kobriti lacks the most basic infrastructure, most notably, electricity. The primary school in the village has only three classrooms, built of cement blocks. The remaining classes include a nursery and Kindergarten organized under trees. The school serves children of the Kobriti village as well as several other villages, some as far as 1.5 miles away. Children, as young as two, walk to and from school daily and are required to cross a waterway that can be flowing too fast for crossing. As a result, children are unable to attend classes for days, possibly weeks, until the water levels decrease. 

Realizing the great benefits that children derived from the school-feeding program organized by Self-Help International the people of Kobriti decided to continue with the program under the strong leadership of Martha Bruckner. When the feeding program was started, on average of 45 children were fed daily. One year later, the impacts of the program were clear as more children continued to turn up for school. The average daily number of children fed increased to 80. The children are fed either breakfast or lunch— prepared from QPM or rice grown locally in the community. The increased enrollment was key in the government’s decision to continue building classrooms in Kobriti.


Members of the community gave the following reasons to explain why they reorganized the feeding program and why it has grown exponentially:

  • Parents and the community as a whole noticed and appreciated the substantial differences in the growth and general well being of the children during periods that they were fed under the program and periods that they were not.
  • School attendance during the feeding period wasfar better than during the period of no feeding.
  • Cases of skin diseases among school childrenwere far lower during the feeding period.

Martha Bruckner, Kobriti’s representative at the district assembly for 12 years, is the driving force behind the community’s development. She is now the District Chief Executive for the Ejura Sekyedumase district.

Thank you for your generosity and support. Your donations have helped to improve the lives of children at the Kobriti School as well as in other Ghanaian communities.

Martha with 3 of her adopted children.
Martha with 3 of her adopted children.

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