World Education, JSI’s new president Margaret Crotty pays working visit

Two sister organisations, the World Education Family of Global Agencies and the John Snow Incorporated’s (JSI), newly appointed president, Margaret Crotty, has paid a working visit to Ghana to familiarise herself with the operations of the network in the country.
Addressing a gathering of members and partners of the organisations in the country after a tour of some of the regions, ministries and government agencies, Madam Crotty indicated that almost all visited state organisations mentioned the significant role of JSI and World Education in the health and education sector in the country. She added that this is a motivation and a call to continue to do more with the various interventions, especially the girl-child educational interventions.
“I am here feeling so proud going around the country and seeing the kind of work our representatives and partners are doing here. I met a group of women at the vocational training centre and they shared their experiences with me and the work they are doing is very important.
“I think so far 17,000 women have gone through the programme and now they are learning new crafts and are setting up businesses, and the ripple effect of that of course is huge. I am so delighted and I hope we do more to help women and the girl-child,” she said.
Country Director – World Education, Susan Adu-Aryee, on her part, indicated that over the past 21 years, World Education and its partners have tried very hard to impact the lives of marginalised girls who did not have any hope, and thank goodness for international donor supports, hope is restored with a number of them getting a second chance either through vocation or formal education.
“World Education has been in Ghana for the past 21 years, in the area of education we have focused on girls’ education, HIV/AIDS education, use of inclusive approach to reach people with disability, early grade reading in basic schools, formal education, etc. and all these we targeted areas which are very hard to reach and which people may have forgotten about, with limited services.
“A key component of our programme also is the sensitisation of parents and community members to understand why girls must go to school. We are in talks with government at the national level and district, municipal assemblies and social on the ground to retain the programme,” she said.
Touching on the visit of the new president, Margaret Crotty to Ghana, and whether her expectations were met, she said: “We have been to one of our key stakeholders – the Ministry of Education – with our new president, Margaret, and the ministry has expressed excitement and satisfaction with the work we are doing here, both the effect and impact, and so she is excited that we are making an impact here”, she added.
Chief of Party, JSI, Dr. Henry Nagai, on his part mentioned Care Continue Project (CCP), Immunisation Project (IP) Country Health Information Systems and Data use project (CHISD), National Malaria Control Programme, as some of the numerous health sector-related programmes that have been initiated, executed and continuing by the two sister organisations in the country.
“Nutrition-related interventions are very key to our programmes. Women and girls are targeted to benefit more from formal education, vocational training and work opportunity as well as reproductive health to be able to protect themselves,” he emphasised.
Strategic Approaches to Girls’ Education (STAGE)
In the last five years, Strategic Approaches to Girls’ Education (STAGE) has been one of the major projects of the network, to lower the barriers that vulnerable and marginalised girls face in achieving education through the outcomes of learning, transition and long-term sustainability.
The first component is learning – girls acquire literacy, numeracy and life skills through accelerated learning programmes. Second component is transition – girls transition into a formal, vocational learning opportunities or some form of employment. The third component is sustainability – communities, schools and systems in Ghana evolve to continuously improve the lives of marginalised girls.
The project has reached out to about 17,000 girls, half of which are between the ages of 10 and 14 years, starting as an accelerated learning programme and having transitioned to normal education.
The other cohort under consideration is women who have never been to school or dropped out of school between the ages of 15 and 19 years in seven of the 16 regions in Ghana. Close to 9,000 women fell within this category and went to an accelerated training programme for six months. At the same time, tehy were taken through technical training and then they transitioned into the world of work with a seed capital.
“We have good stories to tell about retaining girls in school. For the past two years, we have remained close to 92 percent of the 3,000 girls we sent to 300 formal schools in four of the northern regions of Ghana,” Madam Adu-Aryee, iterated.
These projects among many others, the new president has assured her commitment to ensuring they continue for many more girls to benefit in the country.

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