In April 2017 10 newly qualified Air Cadet Junior Leaders were selected to represent Junior Leaders Course 18 in Ghana, giving them the opportunity to test the skills they had learnt during their nine months of training as well as the chance to learn new practical leadership skills.
The expedition worked in partnership with the charity Village by Village, working to reduce the needless suffering of children in rural Ghana. Their aim was to build a school in the rural village of Obom. There had been a school on the site since 1909, however the building had become dangerous forcing the children to be educated under trees. In 2006 local government funding was put in place to rebuild a full primary school, however by 2009 the government had changed, and the funding disappeared leaving the village with 3 classrooms within a skeleton of a school.
The team worked incredibly hard and were able to hand over a completed school that was ready for lessons to commence the next day. With the completion of the school came a promise from the government to fund teachers for the next ten years ensuring that children from the village and surrounding communities would have access to an education.
The whole community came to thank the team in an emotional farewell, a tour of the village and dancing before departing Obom for the last time.
The in-country co-ordinator told the team on its first day that whilst the school they would build would be a huge achievement and lasting legacy it was the experiences, relationships and friendships that they took home with them that would change their lives and be lasting memories, and he was right. The team made many friends, shared many experiences and saw first-hand the difference that each individual has the power to make to the life of someone else.
Village by Village CEO Neil Kerfoot “ In the 10yr history of the charity and the 100’s of groups village by village have hosted no one single group have ever had as much impact on our staff and local community as the 2017 Air Cadet expedition. So much so Village by Village’s Head of Construction named his first born child after their expedition leaders…it was an exceptional expedition.”
Please take time to read the full report of the Junior Leaders Expedition to Ghana.