The Ghana chapter of the International development charity organization, Volunteer Service Overseas (VSO) has promised to strengthen its collaboration with the government and other private organizations to promote rural development through volunteerism.
It made the pledge at the commemoration of the organization’s 60th anniversary in Accra last Wednesday.
The celebration was under the theme, “the value of volunteering in a resource scarce environment.”
VSO’s Country Director, Avril Kudzi in an address said the organization’s work in Ghana over the years has significantly impact development in many rural communities in Ghana.
She said through the dedication and support of the organization’s numerous volunteers, many children with disability have been able to acquire quality education.
Ms. Kudzi, VSO said VSO Ghana’s mother organization has so far supported over 76,000 volunteers, who are working in various ways to addressed poverty in about 120 countries.
“In 2016/2017 alone, we supported over 2.4 million people through our health, education and livelihood programme…we are here to celebrate the legacy and the impact of volunteering over the last six decades and we will use the opportunity to re-engage with a significant number of our returned volunteers,” she said.
“Our volunteers have contributed immensely to fighting poverty over the last 60 years,” she added.
She said VSO Ghana had partnered with some local organizations to promote development, especially in underserved and deprived communities.
As part of the organization’s 60th anniversary, Ms. Kudzi revealed that VSO Ghana was looking to enhance its partnership with the National Service Scheme to train and prepare prospective national service personnel for their work before they are eventually deployed to serve for the mandatory one-year period.
Highlighting some of the challenges the organization faced, she said that they have often have to deal with shocks of volunteers to the realities in communities they visit.
She stressed that with volunteers being at the heart of VSO Ghana’s operations, it VSO will always strive to ensure that volunteers have the best experiences in their respective communities and are able to learn useful skills while supporting development in communities they are deployed to.
She further urged more young people to take up volunteering roles, noting that volunteerism still plays a key role in national development.
A Deputy Executive Director of the National Service Scheme, Kwaku Ohene Djan, who was the guest of honour promised to strengthen the scheme’s partnership with VSO to promote the spirit of volunteerism in Ghana.
He said the NSS is looking to enhance the relationship it has built with VSO since the 1980s.
Launched in the UK in 1958, Alec and Mora Dickson brought their vision to life with the first group of young adults embarking on overseas voluntary work placements in Sarawak (present day Borneo), Ghana, Nigeria, Zambia and Cameroon. The first volunteer landed in Ghana in 1958, a year after Ghana’s Independence.
By: Jonas Nyabor | citinewsroom.com | Ghana