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VSO/Teresa Menka


We have been working in Ghana for over 50 years. Last year, through our work, over 31,000 people accessed improved education and income opportunities.

Inclusive education

7-year-old Blessing Asokiyine (centre) with her 6-year-old classmate Klevin Atinga and VSO volunteer Mary Carnable, at Goriko kindergarten in Talensi District, Bolgatanga, Ghana.

7-year-old Blessing Asokiyine (centre) with her 6-year-old classmate Kelvin Atinga and VSO volunteer Mary Carnable, at Goriko kindergarten in Talensi District, Bolgatanga, Ghana.

Education is a direct route out of poverty. But for some children, access to a classroom is be denied.

In Africa, it is estimated that less than one in ten children with disabilities attends primary school. Girls, due to early marriage, pregnancy or poverty, are more likely to drop out of education before junior high school.

We work with the Ghana Education Service and local communities, training teachers and providing the necessary resources to make classrooms accessible to all children - no matter their circumstances. 

Since 2009 our Teaching Education Needs Inclusively (TENI) programme has supported 2,400 disabled pupils to access school and increased primary enrolment by 18% in some of the most deprived communities in Ghana.

Last year:

  • We reached 23,700 children including 837 vulnerable children requiring extra support
  • We supported the running of 40 girls' clubs with a total membership of 2,094 children.

"VSO education volunteers are experts in special needs. They have knowledge and can build up our capacity. We are rolling out the models they have taught us."

Joachim Faara, the Director of GES in Talensi District

Improving livelihoods

Limited access to markets, poor finance opportunities and reliance on traditional farming methods means cocoa farmers in Ghana are unable to capitalise on increasing global demand. It is estimated that cocoa yields are currently just 40% of their potential, and farming communities remain in poverty.

Through our Cocoa Life partnership with Mondelēz International, we are working to change this. With dramatic results.

Through training and support services, combined with improved market access, our first 100 Cocoa Life communities have seen yields increase by 37% and profits by 49% (2009-2014).

Juliana Aboaagyewa, cocoa farmer in Ghana | VSO ©VSO/Tim Maynard

Juliana Aboaagyewa has increased her income through the Cocoa Life programme. She now considers herself a businesswoman.

Recent results:

Last year:

  • 1,628 farmers trained in food crop and animal husbandry agricultural practices (606 women)
  • 2,352 people participating in community Savings and Loans Associations (83% women
  • 22 community engagement sessions in Jipara 

Youth volunteering 

Young people are a great resource. Our youth programmes see young people supporting a number of community-based projects including: 

  • Promotion of gender equality 
  • Creation of learning resources to support teaching staff 
  • Supporting work to increase employment opportunities
  • Working to improve business skills of Ghanaian entrepreneurs 

Youth volunteers operate in Ghana through International Citizen Service (ICS). Volunteers from the UK and Ghana work together in teams for periods of three months

If you are interested in volunteering as part of ICS: 

  • Ghanaian nationals please apply via our country office (details below)
  • Other nationalities, find out more about youth volunteering

Our programmes

Our partners

Tackling Education Needs Inclusively in Ghana is run in partnership with the Ghana Education Service and supported by Comic Relief. 

Cocoa Life is run in partnership with Mondelēz International, Olam and Child Rights International

Contact us

Interested in developing a partnership with us or finding out more about our work? We’d love to hear from you.

Email the VSO Ghana team

Postal: PO Box AN6526, Accra North, Ghana
Location: House No. F58/5 Clotey Close, Labone, Accra, Ghana
Tel: (+233) 30 2773 775/ 710/ 781
Fax: (+233) 302 774 016 

Interested in volunteering?

Find out more about volunteering in Ghana

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