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On Friday 6th December 2019, Junior Shapers Africa (JSA), embarked on its annual JSA Boys SDG 4 Project at Somnyamekodur D/A Basic School in the Twifo Hemang Lower Denkyira District of the Central Region. The project sponsored by JSA with support from Launchpad Training Centre was to empower rural girls and youth in the school in fulfilment of UN Sustainable Development Goals 4, 5 and 8; to support quality education and lifelong opportunities for all, promote gender equality, and to make available decent work opportunities for all irrespective of background.

The JSA Boys SDG 4 Project is an annual social project carried out by JSA Boys to support and empower the less privileged in society. The project started last year when JSA Boys raised funds to purchase a yearly supply of sanitary towels for less privileged girls in the school. This year’s project was the “Library/Sanitary Towels Project” whereby JSA provided books to refurbish the school’s library to promote quality education with support from EPP Books Services and Challenge Bookshop. In addition to that, a yearly supply of sanitary towels was provided to the girls to keep them in school and prevent absenteeism.

On arrival at Somnyamekodur D/A Basic School, the group from JSA first paid homage to the community chief, elders and school authorities before the program commenced with singing and drumming performance by “Boysco Group” from the school.

The Headmaster of the School, Mr. Michael Ansu Donkor in his opening remarks thanked JSA for coming to their aid once again and helping them to address some of the challenges facing their school. He also elaborated on the lack of an accommodation facility for teachers in the school and called on government and other civil society organisations to assist them with a teachers quarters to serve as accommodation for the hardworking teachers of the school to ensure that teaching and learning go on smoothly. The Assemblyman of the area also applauded the efforts of JSA and made an appeal to the government to provide infrastructural support to the community to enhance its development.

Addressing the gathering, Founding Director of JSA, Mrs. Ethel A. Marfo spoke about the mission of JSA in the community and the Boys SDG 4 Project. She spoke about the importance of STEM education and encouraged the girls to take an interest in Science and Maths to be able to pursue future careers in STEM. She also advised them to give priority to their education so they will be able to contribute to the development of their community in the near future. She also commended the teachers for their hard work and commitment to the school and extended her greetings to the parents and farmers of the community on the occasion of Farmer’s Day.

JSA Boys, Bryan, Daniel, Abiye and Kimani also shared a few words with the girls to inspire them and challenged them to show interest in STEM education for their personal advancement and the progression of their community.

There was also a session on Agribusiness facilitated by Mr. Nii Lankwei Lamptey; JSA Project Coordinator. He encouraged them to pursue opportunities in agribusiness in order to be able to generate more income from their agricultural products for their development. They were challenged to come up with innovative and creative ideas on how they can add value to agricultural produce such as cocoa, coconut, oil palm, plantain, cassava etc. and also ways of monetizing such skills and ideas to support their families and communities. JSA will take up the mantle of nurturing their agribusiness ideas and the marketing and selling of their products to generate income for them. JSA will also include students from the school in annual Bootcamps to equip them with life skills and personal development training.

Next was the Self-Leadership and Goal Setting Masterclass with the JHS 3 students of the school facilitated by Mr. Selasi Dzah of Launchpad Training Centre. He helped them to set goals for the next phase of their lives and challenged them to work hard towards achieving those goals. It was an inspiring session and they were empowered to believe in themselves and hold themselves accountable for their personal development. After the session, the eleven (11) JHS 3 students of the school were presented with certificates of empowerment for their participation in the Self-Leadership and Goal Setting Masterclass.

In a show of gratitude the teachers and Headmaster also presented a Citation of Appreciation to JSA Founding Director; Mrs. Ethel A. Marfo for her dedication, service and unwavering commitment to leading change in their community. They also provided the team with some agricultural produce from the community to take back home.
Somnyamekodur D/A Basic School requires a lot of support, paramount among them being an accommodation facility for teachers to promote effective teaching and learning. Next year, JSA will focus on solving this dire need of the school in addition to the girls and youth empowerment training sessions.
Special thanks to JSA Boys, Parents, Entire Team and Project partners Launchpad Training Centre, StarLife Assurance Company Ltd., GOIL, Atlas-Rent-A-Car, Faytex Sanitary Ltd., EPP Books Services, Challenge Bookshop, Kraftsmen Media Production, Food 101, Flexy Yoghurt, Kamini Chocolate and the general public for supporting the implementation of this worthy social cause.

Junior Shapers Africa (JSA), is the premier male youth personal development organisation in all of Africa focused on grooming and mentoring male youth to become the responsible future men we desire to have in our continent since December 2015. We are a non-profit organization raising Junior Behaviour Change Ambassadors to move our continent forward through the teaching of Values, Life Skills, Agribusiness & SDGs. JSA is a multiple award-winning organisation acknowledged by the (Chartered Institute of Marketing Ghana) CIMG Best Social Entrepreneurship and Activism award in 2017 as well as the Neogenics EduCom award for Value Added Education in 2018.

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