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Latest news about: COVID-19 and our projects

Volunteering in Kpando District

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about Ghana

They call Ghana 'Africa for beginners' which is a compliment in many ways. It is a friendly and safe country, with a list of allurements such as sunshine, beaches, nato'clock, natnational parks and a deeply colorful cultural heritage. The long tropical coastline is in some ways the most nathourly trekking ticket for travelers but it is unlikely you come to Ghana for the sole purpose of lying on a beach as there is much more to experience in Ghana.

Its capital, Accra, is a lively but often misunderstood city, a crazy metropolis with stalls and football shirts, music and markten, and a vibrant street life. It has few major attractions, but makes for a fascinating introduction to the country. Along the coast there is also
much to experience, for example Cape Coast. This was once a slave port but now a cultural destination. Its dark past is a testament to the various European powers that prevailed in the region at different times.

In the interior you will find a wealth of nathour of savanne to dense rainforest and from hiker-friendly mountains to relatively dry plains south of the Sahara. Many of the natNational parks and game reserves are quite small compared to some other African countries, but the network of parks is extensive.

In the far north you can still find elephants on the plains of “Mole National Park”, while in the south you can see the “Kakum National Park” with its popular treetop suspension bridge and a huge range of animals and birds.

about Kpando District

Kpando is a district of 90.000 inhabitants in the Volta region, on the edge of Lake Volta. Kpando town has approximately 30.000 inhabitants and is also the capital of the district and is surrounded by several small villages, each of which has its own social connective tissue (schools, chiefs, clinic, ...).
Kpando is a trading center and home to the Akpini tribe and also has a colonial history. The local language is 'Ewe'. Kpando is about 4 hours drive from the capital Accra and you will find the necessary amenities such as banks, hospital, shops and a bustling local markt.

The local economy is mainly dominated by agricultural activities and it is estimated that approximately 62% of the active population is directly or indirectly engaged in this sector. The climatic condition of the district favorably supports the variety of crops and livestock. In addition, the Volta Lake, to the west, and the Dayi River to the east, provide an excellent situation allowing the cultivation of a variety of food crops, tree crops and vegetables all year round. The lake and the river also have a positive influence on fish farming. The main exportable crops to the EUmarkten are papaya and ananas but also mango and chili pepper. The presence of road infrastructure and a warehouse for the storage of fruit and vegetables makes transport to the ports easy.

projects

We offer volunteer work to the Ewe population in Kpando on Lake Volta. Here we support underprivileged young people and disadvantaged village communities. The operation is very diverse and you can help with projects related to education, employment, health care, infrastructure, catering, sports, culture, tourism. You can also help strengthen the organization of our local team.

Due to our small size, we usually succeed in making an offer tailored to the volunteer that also benefits the local community. It is difficult to tackle something structurally during a short-term stay, but by responding to local needs, you can still make a useful contribution to local needs during a short period of voluntary work without being a burden to local organizations.

During your stay you can also set aside time to visit specific organizations or institutions (hospital, health centers, schools, etc.) that are associated with your own field of expertise.

housing

We have 3 volunteer houses available in the Kpando region. The accommodations are located in the center within walking distance of the markt, shops, bank, restaurants, schools, hospital, ...

Most projects in Kpando are within walking distance or reachable by bike. The projects in the villages outside Kpando can be reached by bicycle.
Each volunteer house has a living room, equipped kitchen, veranda or balcony and bedrooms.

As a volunteer you sleep alone or you share a room with a known volunteer (so you never share the room with an “unknown” volunteer). Each room has a fan and the windows are fitted with mosquito nets. We also have mosquito nets available.

Sheets are provided, but you must bring your own towels. You also have a fridge with a freezer compartment.
Each volunteer house has an indoor bathroom with cold (refreshing) water that is shared with the other volunteers in the house (maximum 5). For the exceptional moments when there is no tap water, we have several barrels of water in every house.

Meals

All your meals are included. One of our local supervisors will cook for you, but you can feel free to come along to the markshopping and helping to cook. You determine your weekly menu together with the supervisor.

For breakfast there is bread, butter, chocolate, cheese spread, jam, egg, honey, tea, fruit juice. You can occasionally opt for local breakfast. Coffee is instant coffee, if you like filter coffee, it's best to bring a pack of coffee from home.

In the afternoon there is a light lunch: some fruit, bread with spreads or a local snack such as koliko (yam) or rice with beans.

For dinner you have a varied menu: pasta, rice, potatoes, chicken, fish, sausages, vegetables. You also have some seasonal fruit available every day (bananas, ananas, watermelon, mango, …). Of course you will also regularly get local dishes (with a western touch) on your plate (plantains, yam, etc.). In recent years we have trained our own cook who has his own catering service. Wisdom can occasionally surprise you with panncakes, smoothies or pizza.

leisure

The Volta region is a very beautiful, green beautiful region with several of Ghana's tourist highlights. You have Lake Volta, the mountainketand along the border with Togo with numerous waterfalls, idyllic mountain villages, caves and also a monkey sanctuary.

Most of these attractions can be visited as a day trip from Kpando. The main attractions can be found below:

Voltamer

Lake Volta was formed by the Akosombo Dam in 1966. The dam supplies Ghana with about a third of its energy needs and is also important for transport, fishing and the timber industry.

The lake is a stone's throw from Kpando and is the main attraction for tourism in Kpando. You can go on the lake with the local fishermen and visit one of the inhabited islands on the lake or you can just paddle around with a local fisherman and experience the different fishing techniques. Of course you can also take a refreshing dip in the warm water.

Avatime Hills

The Avatime Hills form a mountainketand on the border with Togo less than an hour's drive from Kpando. You have eight waterfalls, each with their own individuality and of which the best known, the Wli waterfalls, are the highest in all of West Africa and are home to a colony of bats.

You also have a number of idyllic mountain villages that can be the base for trekking through the jungle where you can admire the amazing fauna and flora of the tropical rainforest. You can also climb Mount Afadjato there. At 880 meters, Afadjato is the highest mountain in Ghana. In addition, there are caves where you can climb along or through them.

Tafi Atome Monkey Sanctuary

In the quiet village of Tafi Atome, 10 km from Kpando, you will find a monkey sanctuary. More than 300 Mona monkeys live here in a protected forest with unique vegetation. The monkeys have been protected since the 90s and the proceeds of the project benefit the local population. During a guided walk through the forest, the baby monkeys jump on your arm and eat a banana from your hand.

Costs

Volunteering abroad comes at a cost and it is not the intention that the community you will help have to pay for it. If there were sufficient budgets to cover these costs, we would spend it on a local employee who knows the local culture and daily customs. If you want to know more about our transparent system, take a look at the transparency page.

local costs

These costs, which you pay on site, are specific to your stay, such as your accommodation and meals. Through payable locally you are also sure that your contribution will go directly to the person who organizes it and will not be left behind at various “intermediate stations”. 

Please note: these costs are only for individual volunteer work. For group projects, different prices apply depending on various factors

  • 1 week: €290
  • 2 weeks: €400
  • 3 weeks: €510
  • 4 weeks: €620
  • 5 weeks: €730
  • extra week = + €110

 

What is included

  • Local costs and preparations for your stay;
  • Airport Pickup at Kotoko Internatnational Airport in Accra;
  • First night in Accra;
  • Transport from Accra to Kpando (day 2);
  • Accommodation (7/7) throughout your stay;
  • all meals;
  • Chilled drinking water;
  • Bicycle (you are responsible for maintenance).

What is not included

There are probably other expenses that you would like to take into account. The list is a brief summary of the most common possible costs:
  • nternatnational transfers;
  • drinks;
  • travel insurance;
  • Costs related to your free time;
  • Visa fees (approximately €70 / 2 months);
  • souvenirs;
  • additional snacks;
  • Other means of transport besides your bike (and feet);
  • Transport back to the luchthaven, we do not offer this as standard because most volunteers will travel first.

Connection fee

We want to ensure that there is sufficient influx of volunteers to keep each project viable. After all, many projects require continuity from volunteers in order for the project to succeed or to create sufficient impact. Unfortunately costs marketing and volunteers raise a lot of money. The budgets that the participating organizations collection during recruitment campaigns are used to develop projects in the south for the benefit of the local population and we therefore do not want to address them for marketingcampaigns.

The membership fee serves to cover the costs of our volunteer platform. We ask each participant for a one-time contribution of €130. This is only the first time volunteering and only after you have been accepted. After payment of this contribution, you can do unlimited volunteer work in the future at any project (if there is room and you meet the requirements of course).

As soon as you are a member, we will inform you as soon as new projects are added to our alliance.

What is your connection fee used for?

  • Annual costs for the management of our platform such as management of the registration database, website, administration…. We try to keep these costs to a minimum, but they must be covered. We have a beautiful website that needs to be maintained and on which all information regarding our programs and our organization must be kept up-to-date.
  • Promotion costs money and we want to make ourselves as visible as possible in the streets in order to find enough volunteers for each project. This contribution is therefore also used for promotions on various media, printed matter, but also the presence at trade fairs & network events.
  • We are volunteers and put a lot of energy into our projects but also into your preparation. In the past we had volunteers who did not show up. That is very annoying for our team and the local people we support. We see this contribution as a kind of guarantee that you will keep your promise.

You can read all about the possible costs on our transparency page.

practically

We will of course not let you leave without thorough preparation and guidance. With Volunteer Abroad Allliance we have developed a system that ensures that you can sleep soundly and leave with peace of mind for your volunteer work abroad. As soon as you have been accepted and everything has been arranged, you can count on the guidance of our experts.

Once you are registered and accepted for your project, your preparation can begin. You already get a lot to read on the website, but you can also prepare for your trip in other ways. Once you have arrived, you can also count on the guidance of our local team.

Project page

Volunteering will have an impact on you and on the local population. We think it is very important to create awareness among you as a volunteer, so that you can optimally prepare for what awaits you as a volunteer. That is why you will receive the login codes for the project page after acceptance as a volunteer. Here you will find information that is important to you as a volunteer for your preparation. You can read everything about your project, accommodation, instructions for a visa application, a packing list, cultural advice for your country and much more…

Personal Mentor

Our experienced mentor will contact you and will help you with advice and answers to the questions you have. Your mentor is a member of an organization that is part of our alliance and has been working with fundraising for the project you are traveling to for years, so you can speak of a real specialist. Our mentors are members of our alliance and have years of experience in the projects. This system ensures that you receive 100% expert guidance from VAA.

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