Helping Reduce Poverty through Education: The Role of the Volunteer

“We believe that, equipped with the skills in CV writing and interview skills, one can use it to secure a job and if possible impart it to others. This can break the poverty cycle as equal opportunities will be created for all.”

Written by the University of Cape Coast WUSC Local Committee

In a country where less than 50% of its population is literate, unemployment and access to quality education is a household problem. Much needs to be done to solve these problems as they are threats not only to the resident country, but to the world at large- much so when Ghana is a major exporter of cocoa, cotton, gold and now crude oil to mention but a few.

The University of Cape Coast Local Committee (WUSC-UCC LC) believe that “Education can Change the World” and has over the years worked around the clock to build strong communities and affect positive change in society. Albert Einstein once said, “The world will not be destroyed by those who do evil, but by those who watch them without doing anything”. Inspired by this and the belief that education can change the world, we dedicate ourselves to serving our communities through education and training and community service to enhance the impact of WUSC programming in Ghana. These we do through fundraising, awareness creation, career guidance training and support to needy pupils at some basic schools within our communities.

The good work was much enhanced when on March 23rd the Local Committee organized a Uniterra sponsored symposium on the theme, “Helping reduce poverty through Education: The Role of the Volunteer”. This aimed at getting more people to join the campaign against poverty and build the capacities of participants. CV writing and interview skills, proposal writing and the main theme were tabled for discussion with speakers from within and outside campus.

The most current format of writing CV, which will catch the attention of the employer, was effectively imparted. Participants were given the opportunity to ask questions and appropriate answers given. This helped build the capacity of the participants. We believe that, equipped with the skills in CV writing and interview skills, one can use it to secure a job and if possible impart it to others. This can break the poverty cycle as equal opportunities will be created for all. Acquiring a job empowers one resourcefully to help put a smile on another person’s face by using his/her position to support the campaign against reducing poverty.

How to write a winning proposal was to ensure training of the volunteer. This was meant to expose the volunteer to mobilise resources for his or her activities. Sometimes he/she needs to contact corporate bodies for such support. It therefore requires the volunteer to submit a convincing proposal to get the necessary resource. Proposal writing skills is therefore vital as it enhances the resource mobilization abilities of participants and for that matter volunteers.

“Reducing Poverty through Education: The Role of the Volunteer” was the third topic. Facts about the poverty level in Ghana were made known. How education can reduce if not eliminate this problem of poverty and the various ways the volunteer can play in reducing poverty through education were discussed. Participants were encouraged to take up roles to help achieve the millennium development goals by 2015. This presentation sensitised participants on the real situation on the ground and the need to take action. This is more so when majority of the participants are to go out of school as teachers. One could see the emotions of participants when the figures about poverty were mentioned.

All in all, the symposium ignited the spirit of volunteerism among participants. It also armed them with the requisite tools necessary to fight poverty. In fact, this was able to reconcile the minds of participants with the words of Martin Luther King Jr. when he said “first, we are challenged to rise above the narrow confines of our individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity”.

Related Stories