International Microfinance Internships in Ghana
- Placement locations: Cape Coast
- Role: Assisting local entrepreneurs with their business plans
- Business Sector: Microfinance
- Requirements: Interns need to be at least 18 years old
- Accommodation: Host families
- Length of placement: From 2 weeks
- Start dates: Flexible
The aim of the Projects Abroad Microfinance project in Ghana is to assist local individuals and groups to work their way out of poverty. The project targets those in need of assistance and gives them the head start that they need to empower themselves within the community. We have two placements on the Microfinance Project. You can choose between working with members of a leprosy camp, or with women in a local fishing community.
Through this project, Projects Abroad provides the funding and training needed to start a business. We hope that this will then enable the individuals involved to secure a sustainable future for themselves and their families through small scale entrepreneurship. Vulnerable individuals or groups who participate in the project receive small loans which, over time and with guidance, they will reimburse. Following complete reimbursement of the loan, new candidates will be selected to join the program.
Interning on the Microfinance Project in Ghana with Projects Abroad
On the Microfinance Project in Ghana, you can choose between working with members of a leprosy camp, or with women who belong to a local fishing village.
Interning at a leprosy camp
In Ghana, there is a stigma that those affected by leprosy are still contagious, or are a bad omen to the rest of the community. Many of these people are shunned from society, and because leprosy is seen as a disability, they often find it difficult to acquire loans for their businesses. At this placement you will help provide business training to men and women who have started their own businesses and want to continue expanding. Your guidance will be instrumental in helping become more self-sufficient and independent.
Interning at a local fishing village
The second placement you can choose is to work with women in a local fishing village on the outskirts of Cape Coast called Abukem. Fishing is the main source of income in Abukem, but it is a seasonal business and the village is often under financial pressure. The fishing industry is dominated by men, and women are often unable to contribute due to a lack of education, training, and discrimination. On this project, you will be able to provide basic education in the form of literacy, English-language skills, and numeracy skills, to the women you work with. You will also provide business training through running business skills workshops, helping women become independent members of their community.
On the Microfinance Project we offer interest-free loans and business training to those in these two communities who have started their own businesses and would like to further expand. We are the only organization that offers this kind of service to those who live in in the leprosy camp.
During your placement you will work with the Microfinance co-ordinator, and can be involved with some of the following activities:
- Bookkeeping, database and profile updating
- Assist with workshops and English or Maths lessons
- Do research on how to introduce new businesses in the community, and to further develop existing businesses
- Monitor business plans once they are implemented and provide guidance and support to beneficiaries
- Prepare regular reports
Through this project you will be directly involved with the process of developing small businesses in a developing country and how micro-credit can help people with limited resources and opportunities become self-supporting and independent. You will spend time in a completely new environment, learning about a different culture and way of life while helping to fight poverty. It will be a rewarding as well as challenging experience.
The Microfinance project runs all year round so you can join us at any time. You do not need any prior experience, but it is important that you have a strong interest in development work and are flexible, a good communicator, and willing to learn.
It would also be useful for you to take an additional Twi language course, either before or during the project so that you become familiar with the local Ghanaian language that is widely spoken in the communities where you will be working.
I was really happy I could help the people of Obuotumpan make soap (rock soap) and I hope all future volunteers will bring their skill to help manage the project to achieve their goals. The beautiful thing is you get to be part of the community; as they learn from you, you also learn from them and together you manage the project. Read more...
This project is available for less than a month if you don't have time to join us for a month or more. This project has been selected by our local colleagues as being suitable for shorter durations for both the host community and the volunteer. Although you will gain valuable cultural insight and work intensely within the local community please be aware that you may not be able to make the same impact as someone participating for a longer period.