Introduction

World Vision (WV) has been working in Ghana since 1979, pursuing integrated community development interventions to meet the needs of the most vulnerable children and their families. Currently, WV Ghana works through 31 Area Development Programs (ADPs) which are integrated long term development programs located across all 10 administrative regions in Ghana.  In the ADPs, WV Ghana works in close collaboration with the communities, local government and District Assemblies, NGOs, churches, faith-based organizations (FBOs), and other stakeholders, in providing basic social services.

The Tutu desk is an initiative by Archbishop Desmond Tutu and friends to provide portable school desks, Tutu desks, to children in Sub Saharan Africa, where over 95 million school children don't have the benefit of a classroom desk. The lack of a desk, a writing surface, affects handwriting, concentration and overall academic performance. To date over 1 million desks have been distributed. The Tutu desk Campaign aims to provide 20 million desks to 20 million children by 2020.

World vision Ghana in collaboration with Voltic mineral water has been partnering to bring tutu desk to children in deprived communities in support of world vision agenda to improve access to and quality of education to children including most vulnerable. 

Distribution of Desks

World Vision Ghana took delivery of 2,988 desks. The distribution went to ADPs with schools that have challenges with furniture and consequently affect learning and teaching. The decision was to support the lower primary classes where pupils were struggling to read and write.

In all ten (10) ADPs received desks ranging between two hundred and fifty (250) and three hundred (300) to support children in primary 1 through to grade three. (Appendix A is the distribution list to ADPs). Over fouty primary schools across Ghana have received these the tutu desk.

Improving learning and teaching

World vision Ghana has received two consignments of Tutu desks so far and distributed to ADPs across Ghana. Several school communities have benefitted from the desks and this has improved learning and teaching in diverse ways including the below.

(a)  Though conscious research has not been commissioned into the use of the tutu desk across world vision assisted schools, qualitative data deduced from reading scores revealed that there has been some level of improvements in pupils’ handwriting in the schools that received the desks.

(b)  Homework delivery has improved because the Tutu desk is easy to carry home for pupils to continue learning after school and also finish off their homework.

(c)   Until the distribution of tutu desk most of the children in the beneficiary schools learn lying prostrate on the floor.  Teachers had quite a tough time organizing meaningful academic work in such situation. With these desks, children no longer lie on their stomach to write.

(d)  The colourful nature supports literacy development as it enhances the concept of print by enabling pupils to learn the alphabet unconsciously from the writings made on the desks.

(e)  The books have helped the beneficiary schools to maintain the few text books available for the children’s use. Until then, pupils put the books on the bare floor and obviously speed the deterioration of these books.

 “Since I joined this school I have been sitting and writing on the floor but today, I have something to write on.” This sums up the excitement with which seven year old Albert, a grade one pupil felt after receiving a “tutu desk”.

Albert is in class three. He was enrolled by his parents who are peasant farmers migrated to the Plains from the Volta region. Isaac is older than the pupils in his class. He had entered class one two years after he turned six. He continues, ‘In my former school, I had a desk. We sat two on a desk, but in this school, I don’t have a desk.’ ‘Even though I don’t have a chair, Now, I have something to write on.’

“Last year, my school received forty of these desks from World Vision Ghana. It came at a time when we were struggling to get desks for the young learners,” said the head teacher of Semanhyia School.  ‘We had petitioned the district assembly but they were taking a long time to respond’. ‘The parents had provided few benches to support.’ ‘The tutu desk came in timely.’ The head teacher concludes amidst smiles.

Albert is excited. He cannot hide his excitement and brimming, he assures, ‘I want to learn so hard that I can write letters for the elders in my community and also teach the young ones.’ I want to polish my hand writing and also learn to speak English well.’

To show appreciation, a joyful member of the parent association said ‘my children will not write on the floor like lizards.’ "This is a great relief" she said.  The District Director of Education expressed her appreciation to world vision and partners for facilitating the supply of tutu desk.

In the last couple of years, Word vision Ghana in association with Voltic Mineral Water have donated over 4000 tutu desks World Vision Ghana. The tutu desk is an initiative of Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa to complement the effort of governments across Africa to provide writing desks for rural poor school children.

 

ATEBUBU

 

  1.  

KINTAMPO SOUTH

300

  1.  

ANYIMA MANSIE

300

 

HOHOE BASE

 

  1.  

NKWANTA

300

  1.  

KRACHI WEST

300

 

AMASAMAN

 

  1.  

AFRAM PLAINS

298

  1.  

FANTEAKWA

298

 

SAVELUGU

 

  1.  

KARAGA

298

  1.  

SABOBA CHEREPONI

298

 

BOLGA

 

  1.  

GARU TEMPANE

298

  1.  

KASSENA NANKANA EAST

298

TOTAL:

2,988



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