A Non-Governmental Organisation, Engage Now Africa (ENA) on Wednesday, September 8, 2021, joined the rest of the world to mark International Literacy Day.
The NGO used the opportunity to call on the Government of Ghana to pay more attention to adult literacy.
“We will appeal to government to make adult literacy more inclusive in the educational curriculum. Provision for digital learning should also be made available to adult learners as well. More importantly, government must prioritize TVET and also partner with good organisations like Engage Now Africa to help implement our vocational skills in a wider range, so we can build the present and a future workforce. We also look forward to partnering with like-minded organisations. Together we can achieve more,” ENA noted in a statement.
Engage Now Africa offers varied interventions to various communities across the nuke and cranny of Ghana.
One of the intervention areas is adult literacy.
The NGO has over the years supported the Ministry of Education in its quest to reduce illiteracy and increase literacy among the Ghanaian population.
Below is the full statement from ENA:
A PRESS RELEASE BY ENGAGE NOW AFRICA ON THE OCCASION OF THE CELEBRATION OF INTERNATIONAL LITERACY DAY, 2021
Today is International Literacy Day. 8th September is set aside by United Nations Education, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) to evaluate global literacy to ascertain the progress of young people and adults. The world will commemorate this day on the theme ”Literacy for human-centered recovery: Narrowing the digital divide’.
The role of technology during the COVID-19 induced school closure period in ensuring the continuity of literacy cannot be underemphasized. Hence, digital mediated learning should be extended to all especially, the youth and adults to enable them to keep pace with the current digitized world. The world will recover fully, only when the proffered literacy is centered on humanity. All facet of human life has been affected in several ways and the recovery will not emerge by the flip of a switch but through fixes. Therefore, every action taken in this direction must be centered on humanity. Engage Now Africa (ENA) is ever ready to respond to this call with passion.
Engage Now Africa joins the rest of the world to celebrate this all-important day on the educational calendar. Below are some of the achievements attained in the past year, 2020, irrespective of the obstacles that the COVID-19 pandemic posed. We share these attainments with you as an invitation to join us on our Facebook page (@engagenowafricagh) on Wednesday 8th September 2021 at 10:00 am.
Engage Now Africa (ENA) is an international Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) that offers varied interventions to various communities across the nuke and cranny of Ghana. One of the intervention areas is adult literacy. The NGO has over the years supported the Ministry of Education in its quest to reduce illiteracy and increase literacy among the Ghanaian population.
The year 2020 was quite a challenging year, which witnessed an extended closure of schools. Though formal education was the most affected, adult literacy could not operate due to the government’s caveat for all gatherings to be suspended. Digital delivery of teaching and learning infrastructure was quickly put up to ensure the continuity of learning to save the knowledge already acquired from eroding and obtain new skills. The digital system did not factor in the adult non-literate. Thereby creating a drawback and posed a learning challenge, with the successes chalked earlier coming under threat of being eroded. The NGO rose to the occasion to innovatively employ digital mediated teaching and learning.
Additionally, Engage Now Africa led adult learners to produce alcohol-based hand sanitisers and face masks. They were able to distribute over 2000 pieces of alcohol-based hand sanitisers and face masks to the vulnerable in society. The activity took place during the International Literacy Day, 2020 celebration to help curb the spread of COVID-19. The distribution was coupled with sensitization of the general public about the mode of transmission of the COVID-19 pandemic and the need to strictly observe the protocols put in place by the government in conjunction with the Ghana Health Service authorities.
The desire to bring literacy to every home in Ghana and the quest to empower the Ghanaian pushed Engage Now Africa to sustain their classes during the nationwide lockdown. Hence, the NGO fully resumed the recruitment and training of adult learners across the country after the government had lifted the ban on social gatherings. Despite the challenge faced last year, an estimated 1200 adult learners were graduated, with an additional 2000 new adult learners recruited. These took place under strict COVID-19 protocols. None of the Learners got infected.
The impact of the pandemic required innovative ideas to prevail upon the circumstances that COVID-19 brought in its wake. Engage Now Africa partnered with other organisations such as Ensign College of Public Health, the Non-Formal Education Division of the Ministry of Education, and United Way Ghana to educate more than 10,000 people on the prevention of COVID-19. Additionally, Engage Now Africa and her partners were able to distribute Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) in the form of handwashing basins, face masks and alcohol-based hand sanitisers to schools and other government institutions, and more than 10,000 individuals within communities across the country. The Personal Protective Equipment vocational training series was a tremendous intervention of hope for most of our participants, and we were able to enrol a total of 1724 people into the vocational skills program.
Nonetheless, Engage Now Africa is looking forward to partnerships with like-minded organisations to provide literacy, numeracy and vocational skills training to more vulnerable individuals in our communities. Engage Now Africa is currently in partnership with United Way Ghana in providing literacy and vocational skills to about 500 learners in the Greater Accra, Ashanti, Central and Easting regions. This confirms that literacy without vocational skills is not complete. The acquisition of both skills wholly equips the individual to take control over their destiny. That is the real meaning of empowerment.
The prevailing circumstance calls for partnerships and collaborative effort to achieve success, and Engage Now Africa is open to more partnerships and collaborations.
Despite the challenge COVID-19 pandemic posed to the literacy world, vocational skills were still provided to learners in the areas of sewing face masks, alcohol-based hand sanitiser, liquid soap, and disinfectant making. The other skills include shower gel making, batik, tie and dye, beads making, baking, washing powder making, disinfectant, bleach preparation and many more. The above-enumerated skills offered to the Learners indicates Engage Now Africa’s desire to equip the Ghanaian Adult Learner not only with literacy but with vocational skills as well.
Engage Now Africa was sponsored by MTN, Ghana’s leading telecom company, with a donation of cell phones to motivate hard-working Facilitators who maintained the adult literacy classes during the COVID-19 crisis.
2020 was a litmus test for education globally, but adult literacy was severely hit with no medium of delivering facilitation and learning. However, Engage Now Africa remained resolute in keeping tap on guarding against the erosion of the knowledge gained to promote further learning.
As Ghana joins the rest of the world to celebrate International Literacy Day 2021, Engage Now Africa is committed to centering every literacy program especially, digital literacy around the adult learner. Human-centered literacy is what will ensure the world recover effectively from the pandemic strong.
For further information, log on to: www.engagenowafrica.org