It started as a club at the Wilfred Laurier University in Waterloo, Canada to clear the misconception and stereotypes about Africa in 2008. It then evolved into taking students to Ghana to undertake community projects.
Today, the Future of Africa (FOA) has evolved to being a part of the community, helping street kids and bringing them to be a part of the society.
“We run outreach programs for kids in the street, every week, we see about 80 kids and provide pathways for them to go to school and re-unite with their families,” says Torwomenye Mawuli Kwesi Azaglo, president of Future of Africa.
The Future of Africa also provides the kids with vocational training so that they can have tangible skills to work with.
“We’re getting to a point where we’re establishing a community center in Accra where these kids can come to everyday and can have access to arts and crafts, food and literacy materials and counselling,” Azaglo adds.
Future of Africa Leaders and Volunteers
Every year, the FOA welcomes leaders from universities from Canada and Ghana to volunteer and help train the street kids. These leaders and volunteers help in the FOA’s weekly programs that provide the immediate needs of the children in the streets.
These leaders help create a safe space to promote friendship and the wellbeing of the street children as well as tapping in the vision of FOA to help them acquire their own leadership skills. Azaglo says the leadership program, aside everything will allow volunteers the opportunity to embark on a personal and professional development journey as they’re paired with mentors who engage with them regularly.
Smart Child Academy in the Volta Region
Azaglo says, aside the activities of Future of Africa in Accra, they also run the Smart Child Academy in Lolito, near Sogakofe in the Volta Region.
He says the focus of their training to these kids is vocational skills because it is the only practical way for the kids to start work and earn money instead waiting for the government.
“It’s about time that Ghanaians do more than just go to school and get a degree, I believe education needs to be restructured so that everyone who graduates has a practical skill to work,” Azaglo says.
He says the school is putting up a boarding facility to bring some of the kids from Accra to attend the school in to benefit from the training.
Azaglo who is currently the assistant dean of students and community affairs at Ashesi University hopes with the success of Future of Africa projects, there would be less children on the streets of Ghana. Azaglo says if the modules work, they’re likely to expand to other parts of Africa.