Mankind Ghana Foundation is a non-governmental, non-profitable organization, which concentrates on Ghana’s social developments. This organization is based specifically on an exchange program whereby people from all over the world can come to Ghana and help change the lives of people in deprived areas.
Travelling and volunteering with Mankind Ghana Foundation is an experience that you don’t want to miss. We give volunteers the opportunity to learn, exchange culture with the local Ghanaian people and to provide help needed in the deprived areas. Give yourself the chance to volunteer with Mankind Ghana Foundation to get to know a new country, culture and learn how other parts of the world live. Every volunteer is guaranteed 24-hour safety and security. Staff members are there to assist volunteers whenever needed. We are loyal to our volunteers and make them our number one priority. Other than most of the organizations in Ghana, we provide affordable prices, in which no profit is made but purely covers the necessary costs
TEACHING AND CARE, We give our volunteers the opportunity to choose from a wide range of primary schools. The ages of the children will vary from 5 to 12 years old. The children from these schools are always looking forward to meeting new volunteers and to learn something new. We believe each volunteer has something unique to offer due to different countries of origin. Educational experiences are not required. Your subject of teaching is up to you. This could be for example, English lessons, Mathematics, hygienic lessons etc. Please inform the organization in advance of your preference (which you can change while your stay if not satisfying). Moreover, you are to choose what class to teach. What a freedom!
MEDICAL Volunteers get the opportunity to work in both government and private hospitals where they get the chance to observe. While only qualified medical students get the chance to practice, volunteering is a good step for those who are about to enter medical school and for those who are busy with it. Volunteering gives people the chance to gain experience in the medical field, you’ll get to know medical staff and can change wards if you so please. It’s also possible to volunteer in the operating theater and to observe and ask questions there.
ORPHANAGE Volunteering in an orphanage is a great opportunity to make a real difference in the lives of young Ghanaians. It is a great opportunity for them to get some one-on-one attention and love that is often impossible without the help of volunteers. The children all have had a difficult past. They are cared for by Ghanaian caretakers (food, accommodation etc.), but do not receive any further intense attention or love from them. As a volunteer in an orphanage, you will wash, feed, dress up the children in the morning and bring them to school afterwards. While the children are at school, it’s for you to decide whether you help the caretakers with cooking and cleaning or stay at school. When school has finished, you take them home and help the children with their homework first. After all homework has finished, you can finally do the fun stuff! From physical games to drawing to talking, it’s up to you how you want to spend time with the children. After dinner, you take the children into bed after washing them first. A story before bedtime is a good way to get the children quiet and get them to sleep. You’ll stay in the orphanage and if you wish to do a morning shift or evening then you may do that also.
JOURNALISM Volunteers will have the opportunity to work with a local broadcasting station within the region where you’ll be working - both at the office and in the field together with the staff at your project. When you get to the placement your supervisor will take you through all that you have to know about your work, there are three projects to choose from: news, entertainment or sports.
Our staff members are always on the ground checking on how volunteers are doing at the placement and are always happy to talk to your supervisor if you have any ideas that you think will work out.
The maximum duration of doing a project is one year. Beneath you can find the prices in American Dollars and in Euros. Be aware that the longer you stay, prices come down.
If you would like to stay for another duration than is mentioned below (for example 3 weeks or 1.5 months), no problem! Please contact us first. We will arrange that for you and provide a price indication. If you want to do more than one program, you can also contact us for this. All projects are flexible to and you always have the weekends off to enjoy and explore the country.
(!) ADMINISTRATION COSTS ARE INCLUDED (!)
Prices in American Dollars2 WEEKS1 MONTH2 MONTHS3 MONTHS4 MONTHS5 -7 MONTHS7 MONTHS- 1 YEAR
Prices in Euros
7 MONTHS – 1 YEAR
- Airport pick-up
- Breakfast, lunch and dinner
- Water and light
- Induction around the city
- Introduction to your placement of project
- 24 hours of support from the staff
- Project placement
- Administration costs
Airport pick-up: Upon arrival volunteers will be awaited at the arrival hall of Accra International Airport by a local staff with a Mankind-T-shirt and your name written boldly on a sheet, with a banner of the organization.
Please don’t follow anyone who is not wearing the Mankind Ghana Foundation T-shirt or holding the banner with the organizations name written boldly on it. A taxi will then bring you to your placement. Accommodation: People doing the orphanage project will live in the orphanage itself, unless the volunteer prefers not (let us know). All volunteers doing other projects will stay in a host family. It’s possible that volunteers may need to share a room with another volunteer.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner: Volunteers will be served three times a day for which you will be eating together on the same table with your host family. Ghanaians like to eat anywhere they feel like eating so please don’t be offended if your host family is not using the dinner table for the place to eat. You will be provided with local food. It’s completely okay to tell them you do not like the food. Tell your family, they will provide other food for you next time. Induction: On your first day, a local staff will take you on a city tour to show you places such as the post office, internet café, exchange center, bank and tro (bus) and taxi station. Introduction: On your first day at your placement a local staff will accompany you and will officially introduce you and explain what to do at your project placement.
NOT INCLUDED! YOU MUST HAVE YOUR OWN:
- Travel and health insurance
- Flight Ticket
- Visa (We will provide you an invitation letter to get a visa more easily)
As a volunteer, please agree to the following regulations:
- Respect the rules of your host family.
- Treat your host family as your family back home, do not use the house as a hotel.
- Turn off your lights and fan before leaving the house.
- Lock the door of your room before leaving the house.
- Tell your host family if you have any allergies.
- Tell your host family if you do not like the food given to you.
- Tell the staff if you are having problems.
- Dress up accordingly, shirts covering shoulders, trousers/dresses covering knees.
- Attend the Thursday meetings. They are fun! You will meet the other volunteers and talk about your experiences.
- Respect placement property.
- Drunkenness is not permitted at the host family.
- Don’t fail to show up at work (or inform us in advance)
- Don’t smoke in public areas.
DAYS OFF We want you to enjoy your time in Ghana, but please avoid taking days off frequently. Let the staff know on time if you want to take a day off. Every volunteer is off on the weekends. Volunteers staying longer than three months will have the chance to have two weeks break (the longer you stay, the more weeks off you will get).
SICKNESS If you cannot attend work due to sickness. Inform your supervisor as early as possible.
PREPARATIONS VISA APPLICATION A visa is necessary to enter the country. Without a Ghanaian visa you are not allowed to enter the country. It could be quite difficult to get a visa from the Ghanaian embassy without an invitation letter. That’s why it’s important to let us know if you’re ready to apply for a visa. We will then send you an invitation letter for your application. We will also help you through the whole process of applying if you have any questions.
It’s very important to visit your GP before your visit to Ghana. We are not allowed to give you medical advice on vaccinations, but make sure you are at least vaccinated against Yellow fever (bring booklet to Ghana) and ask your GP for all other vaccinations you will need.
Mankind Ghana Foundation asks volunteers to do their own insurance before coming to Ghana. In the unlikely event that an incident happens, our staff will help you and work with your insurance company. Also, volunteers should buy their own flight tickets. Book early, it will be cheaper for you!
Ghana has a different culture than your country back home. You will be thrown into a new situation. Don’t fear it! The best way to get through this and to enjoy this wonder of difference is to accept. Accept the facts and try to adapt to the new culture. Here is a few don’ts in Ghana:
- Don’t cross your legs during formal conversations
- Don’t wear dresses/trousers that are too short
- Don’t greet, wave or pass things to another person with your left hand (this is supposed to be your toilet hand!). Writing with your left hand is not a problem
- Don’t expect to live in luxury
- Don’t expect drivers to stop at a zebra crossing for you
- Never start a conversation without saying good morning/afternoon/evening first
Things to consider:
- Time in Ghana is not so important. Don’t be surprised if buses show up late or if you have a meeting and this person arrives an hour late.
- Food is very important and shared in Ghana. Always invite other people when you’re eating
- Men in Ghana are very flirty. They are not as shy as western men
- As a white person, people will call you ‘Obruni’ all the time, which means “white person”
- Some families do not have a regular supply of running water, you might have to take some “bucket showers” during your stay
- Communication is the key to a happy relationship with your host family
- When you have clothes to wash you will have to do it by hand
On your first day, a local staff will take you on a city tour to show you places such as the post office, internet café, exchange center, bank and tro (bus) and taxi station. Whiles you are being inducted, you will be taught how to catch a taxi from your home to your placement and to the city center, as well as how to get back home.
ARRIVAL: Upon arrival volunteers will be waited for at the arrival hall of Accra International Airport by a local staff with a t-shirt and your name written boldly on a sheet, with a banner of the organization. There will be a taxi waiting to transport you to your region where you will have your placement. If you are arriving late, we will provide a place to sleep for you for the night. The day after you will be brought to your region of placement.
Upon arrival volunteers will be waited for at the arrival hall of Accra International Airport by a local staff with a t-shirt and your name written boldly on a sheet, with a banner of the organization. There will be a taxi waiting to transport you to your region where you will have your placement. If you are arriving late, we will provide a place to sleep for you for the night. The day after you will be brought to your region of placement.
People doing the orphanage project will live in the orphanage itself, unless the volunteer prefers not to (let us know). All volunteers doing other projects will stay in a host family. It’s possible that volunteers may have to share room with another volunteer. Please don’t bring people home without permission in advance.
Volunteers will be served three times a day. You will be provided with local food. This is often a meal with rice. If you are not able to go home for lunch, let your hosts know. They will pack a lunch for you. Also, if you would like to have dinner outside the house. Let your host family know on time. Ghanaian people often start preparing food early in the day. At every host family’s home, there will be plenty of water available. Make sure to drink enough water during the day.
If you’re buying water on the streets, make sure to buy ‘pure water’. Never buy ‘iced water’, which may be contaminated tap water. You can recognize pure water by sachets with writing or bottles with a closed cap.
Your host family will not have a washing machine. You need to wash your clothes yourself. If you’re having problems with doing that, ask your hosts. They will explain you how to do it properly. There’s an art to it!
The currency of Ghana is the Ghanaian Cedi (1 euro = 4.60 GHC, 1 USD = 3.60 GHC). It’s not possible to pay by card in shops or supermarkets. Everything is paid by cash. Make sure to get money from the bank first. Don’t carry too much cash with you to prevent a huge loss if robbed which is very unlikely. All banks in Ghana accept VISA cards. Most of the banks accept MasterCard and Maestro cards as well. If you have a different credit/debit card, please inform your bank before departure.
Do not underestimate the differences between your country and Ghana. There will be a big change in climate and food which may result in symptoms such as tiredness, sickness, headaches and diarrhea. It’s wise to bring some aspirin or paracetamol and diarrhea pills with you. Paracetamol are available in Ghanaian pharmacies as well.
Yellow fever is a very serious virus. Make sure to get vaccinated against it. Bring proof of this vaccination to Ghana. They will check this at customs at the airport.
Malaria is a disease that has symptoms such as fever, fatigue, vomiting and headaches. The disease is very common in Ghana. The disease is transmitted by the bite of an infected female Anopheles mosquito. This bite introduces the parasites from the mosquito's saliva into a person's blood. Be prepared for this. Bring a mosquito net, use DEET on your skin to protect yourself against mosquitos and ask your GP for malaria tablets. These tablets do not protect you against malaria for 100%. But the chance to get malaria is lower, and if you do get the disease, the symptoms are minor.
The sun in Ghana can be very hot. Your body will lose more water than usual. This could result in dehydration. Symptoms of dehydration are: not needing to urinate or dark urine, tiredness and headaches. We advise you to drink a lot, also to bring re-hydration salts (these are mostly for sale in sachets at pharmacies or drug stores).
Tro-tro: Tro-tros are minibuses that take about eleven passengers and travel on fixed routes (not on fixed times). These buses are the cheapest, but very crowded.
BUS: STC buses link the major cities in Ghana such as Accra-Kumasi and Accra-Tamale, also to Burkino Faso. This is a very safe way of travelling. Make sure to update yourself on their departure times. Often these buses only depart a few times (sometimes even once or twice) a day. It’s better to wait for a little while than to miss the bus.
LINE TAXIS: These are taxis that operate fixed routes. It has the same system as tro-tros, you share the car and all pay a set fare. A line taxi is not so crowded though thus a little more expensive.
DROP TAXIS: Drop taxis are taxis in which you tell the driver where to go for a certain price, no sharing. Make sure to agree a price before getting in to the taxi. We advise you to travel with drop taxis at night since it’s the safest.
TRAIN: Rail services do exist between Accra, Tema, Kumasi and Takoradi, but are very slow. STC buses is usually a better option for travelling such distances. If you prefer sleeping during the journey, then the train might be a good option as well since the train has sleeper cabins.
We advise you to buy a SIM-card for your phone as soon as you arrive in Ghana. It’s much cheaper to have contact with your Ghanaian friends, as well as your contacts in your home country. MTN SIM-cards are often the most reliable. We will help you get one on your induction.
On your first day, during your induction, the staff will show you the internet café of Koforidua (Vodafone Internet Café). This one is definitely the best place to go since it has fast internet and air-conditioning inside. It’s possible to Skype there as well. Ask the staff of the Internet Café for a webcam and headset if you don’t have your own device. You will see the post office as well. Both the post office and the internet café are located in the center of the city. From this place you can send cards or other mail. Volunteers are allowed to use the following postal address in case friends or families would like to send something to volunteers by mail:
C/O MANKIND GHANA FOUNDATION, P. O BOX KF 1286, KOFORIDUA E/R, GHANA W/A.
During the weekends you are off. You can stay home. However, you can go travelling as well. These travels are on your own costs. Though, the staff is willing to help you with it. We can help you how to get there and what to do there. Volunteers often enjoy their weekend trips. It’s a good way to see some more of the country.
Many languages are spoken in Ghana. English is the official language of Ghana. Most people do speak this language well. Of the local languages, Twi (chwee) is the most widely spoken. Some few words might be useful.
How are you? Wo ho te sen? Or Ete sen?
Do you speak English? Wote barofo ana?
What is your name? Ye frewo sen?
My name is….. Ye fre me …..
How much? Saine me?
Thank you Medaasi
Victor O. Frimpong (Country coordinator) +233541713475
Cecelia Yeboah (Country Director)
Michael Osei (Projects Manager)
Felien Verschuur (Netherlands)
- Passport + Visa
- Credit/debit card
- Insurance card
- Flight ticket
- Yellow fever vaccination
- Summer clothes
- Clothes appropriate to work
- Few warm clothes (light layers)
- Underwear and socks
- Washing powder (can also buy here)
- Insect repellant with DEET
- Diarrhea pills
- Anti-malaria tablets
- Rehydration salts
- After sun
- Mosquito net
- Phone + adapter
- Project preparations (e.g. games, paper, colouring pens)
The country uses a type G plug.
Good luck and, most importantly, HAVE FUN! Mankind Ghana Foundation. All rights reserved.