Ashanti Development is a volunteers’ charity. We mean by this that although we employ people to work for us in Ghana, we never pay Europeans or Ghanaians who work for us in the UK any kind of wage, commission or salary. Nor do we pay many expenses.
On the other hand, we don’t charge Europeans for volunteering to help us in Ashanti. If their application to volunteer succeeds, they need to cover all their own travel and food costs, but we will provide free lodging and interpretation if necessary, and make them welcome to visit as often, or stay as long as they want.
We believe in working in partnership with Ashanti villages. We take care to listen to their ideas and consult them on the projects, as ultimately they must take ownership. We also encourage them to contribute by doing the manual work associated with the projects. We don’t ask Europeans to do manual work as there are always other contributions, based on better education, that that they can make.
We always start work with providing clean water and sanitation, and hope to follow this with healthcare, education and income generating activities. We also try to take the strain off the villagers for at least five years by, for example, protecting them from expenses resulting from illness.
We work as closely as possible with other organisations, including Ashanti local authorities, central government and the Ashanti King.
When we started work, we knew little about development and made mistakes we wouldn’t make today. We are therefore very happy to exchange information, advice and other help with NGOs working in Ghana.