At least fifty thousand (50,000) children will learn how to read properly by October 2017 because of an audacious citizenship effort by an organisation called the HOPE Campaign.
The children, drawn from all over the country, are engaged in a program called “HOPE Reads” funded by members of the HOPE Campaign. The first day of the bi-monthly campaign was observed on 8th April, 2017 in 30 communities around the country.
These communities included Adenta, Ogbojo, Oyarifa, Nima and Dansoman in Accra. Other beneficiary communities were Cape Coast, Sogakope, Twifo Atti Mokwa, Jomoro, Larteh and other areas.
Jones de Graft Darkwa, the programs coordinator for the Hope Campaign says they are driven by a do-good passion for Ghana.
“When we heard President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in his inaugural address asking Ghanaians to be citizens and not spectators, we in the HOPE Campaign asked ourselves what we could do to help our beautiful country. We came across some damning statistics that reading in primary schools was at its lowest ebb.
So we decided to do something about it and set ourselves an ambitious target of helping 50,000 children to be able to read by October 2017. We hatched this plan for three months and finally we rolled out on 8th and 9th April”.
*But it has been especially challenging.*
“We have no funding sources except a certain unit of the HOPE Campaign called the HOPE Champs. The Champs contributed money voluntarily to make this happen. We came up with costing for the project including refreshments for the children after the exercise. We volunteer our time and we use only African titles for the project.
So our Champs took it up and donated willingly to help see us through. At the first reading, we recorded 1500 children. The second reading day is happening on April 22nd and 23rd and we are targeting five thousand children this time”, said Jones.
A total of 35 communities are expected to participate in the next reading program.