Projects Abroad Human Rights Office Accra, Ghana - Monthly Reports
Monthly Reports from 2011
This project took place from Monday 5th - Friday 10th December 2011 at Ashaiman. Volunteers facilitated human rights training of teachers on topics such as basic human rights, children’s rights, child labour, child maintenance, etc. Participation was very encouraging. Sascha, Iris, Kristin and Sandeep were part of the team.
This project has been re-launched this month. Volunteers are preparing resource materials to train teachers on basic human rights and children’s rights at Ashaiman scheduled to take place on 5th-16th December 2011.
This month PAHO held two programmer in the Islamic community of Nima. The first was delivered to a congregation of men and women, the first time both sexes attended advocacy together.
Islamic Advocacy recommenced on 15th of September following a break for Ramadan in August. Volunteers travelled with Mr. Hans to the Islamic community of Nima to continue advocacy on Domestic Violence.
This project combines advocacy, focal group discussions and legal services to tackle violations of intestacy rights and to break the trend of such abuses in rural Ga communities. Over June and July we worked in 7 affected communities. In August we interacted with another five.
Having heard of numerous avoidable conflicts during our outreaches PAHO volunteers decided to promote the drafting of legal wills. At the end of each Intestacy outreach volunteers take details from interested members of the community and prepare a will which is signed and approved by Mr Hans. This initiative is called the Will’s Clinic. Volunteers find this work extremely interesting and hands-on.
Our social justice programmes have been running well. Having undertaken only four projects this month, volunteers were split into teams. Each project had two teams with different roles and a different set of tasks were assigned to each group.
Our Domestic Violence Project came to a close on the 19th of July. Most of our team attended the quiz organised by PAHO to test the level of retention and understanding of the kids we had provided advocacy for over the past year.
Our social justice programmes have been running well. We have limited the number of projects undertaken to insure each project is getting sufficient attention and experiencing continuous progression.
This month we had one workshop in this project. We visited Nima, a community which has expressed serious issues relating to local policing and violation of offender's rights. Our volunteers presented the UN's 10 Suspect Rights and general statement on current police behaviour with reference to corruption and extortion. The community leaders were very interested, engaged and grateful for the training. We will continue to work with this community and facilitate a better relationship between the police and the public.
At present our Social Justice Projects are taking up approximately 60% of our work load. This is slightly less than previous months as I gather from past reviews.
This month due to term break we have not been running Domestic Violence or Focal projects; these will recommence in May.
Offender’s Rights – The team of volunteers have conducted focus-group discussions, community workshops and police-community forums. New ideas continue to emerge for the project. We are trying to meet with the head of Ghana Police to discuss the volunteer’s findings when doing the fact-finding missions.
Human Rights Clubs in Senior High School - PAHO has partnered with Amnesty International to introduce human rights clubs in a senior high school in Accra. The aim of the first meeting was to work on students’ understanding of the concept of both a right and Human Rights, then explain the relevance of the latter in certain situations focusing in particular on the students’ own personal experience and their communities. Volunteers have begun holding meetings on topics which many children are able to relate to. Last Friday, the meeting was about child labour in Ghana and specifically in Accra. Volunteers continue to plan for future meetings and hope to expand to more schools in the future.
Legal Clinics - Two more legal clinics were held in communities in Dodowa. Volunteers first held focus group discussions to determine levels of understanding of issues and which issues were most pertinent to provide legal education. PAHO returned to give presentations on child maintenance, marriage and intestacy with Legal Aid. Follow-up mediations will take place in February.