Author: Adrian

Fantastic Irish Volunteers raising Funds for the Projects in Ghana

Retired, Semi retired, Fully employed?
What are you going to do with your Saturday morning?
Well two wonderful people Ann and Jim decided to some uncluttering.
Then what? Put it all in the bin, have a trip to a recycling centre, put it in a skip?
All these pre loved items that had been kept, just in case they were needed (which they weren’t), were cleaned up and taken along to the local ‘car boot’ sale.

The proceeds are going to help our projects in Djelukofi and Lolobi.
They may turn into cement blocks to build a communal toilet or a wall in a library.
Or to become shelves to display the books in the library.
Or desks for the students at the Lolobi community (and there over 4000 of them) to work at in the library or computer room.
Or lights so the students can study at night. (In the tropics its dark by 6.00 pm)

Isn’t that a brilliant way to declutter and help others less fortunate.

A huge thank you to Jim and Ann and everyone who turned up and bought the items.

If you would like to raise funds for us please contact us for some hints and tips.

Ann at the stall
Jim with all the goodies
And people came to buy


Your wonderful contributions to world book day

Thank you.

Over the years we have been working in Ghana we have refurbished and with the help of friends and Book Aid International stocked five community libraries.

These libraries are extremly well used. Some from six in the morning till late at night.

All of this is through your contributions. So this is just a thank you very much for your donations and suport. Please enjoy the photos of the libraries being used.

If you can contribute to the next library we are refurbishing in the Lolobi Communities we would appreciate it but even more so the thousands of people there who would use it.


Lolobi Hub needs Assessment analysed and findings show the desperate desire for a library

A very brief analysis of the needs assessments completed by a sample of the Lolobi Ashambi and Lolobi Kumasi communities.

This is the brief Analysis

From an evaluation of a sample of needs assessment forms all households are strongly in favour of a community library and learning hub in Lolobi.
From the analysis it will be used by all age groups from learners to professionals, upskilling and rewarding for leisure and for the elderly.
Parents are particularly looking forward to it being somewhere where the young will gather rather than “loitering around and involving themselves in unhealthy activities”
Comments were made about the fact it will be a place where children and young adults can work and study in a quiet place.
All respondents were willing to volunteer their time and skills from labouring, carpentry, electrical work to helping run the library and a number expressed the desire that it should be completed as soon as possible.
Most of the written comments were about how the community library would help the children progress their education and one comment expressed the need for books for the elderly who were educated, and in need of the stimulation that books can bring.

Here are a couple of copies of the forms and their authors

Delali Norviewu and son
John Mawudeku


And you knew there was going to be a but.
We need your donations to help make this a reality. Book Aid International has agreed to stock the library and another development charity has donated six fully refurbished laptops for the computer hub . Please dig deep so we can rebuild the walls, plumb in the toilets and get the books on the shelves and chairs and tables ready for everyone to appreciate all the facilities.


Update on progress and uses for the Lolobi Hub

To listen to the blog click on the start button

It was great to meet the team leading the refurbishment of the community hub in Lolobi. We are working together to turn this old, dilapidated building into a library, computer lab, children’s play area and community space for all to learn in and enjoy.

The building is situated so it can easily be accessed by two communities; Lolobi Ashambi and Lolobi Kumasi. Most people living here are farmers and struggling with the cost of living crisis . The hub we are building will provide a space for the communities to meet, enhance their learning and to play.

The hub and the elders
The new roof covered with hamatan dust
The road between Lolobi Ashiambi and Lolobi Kumasi

There are 4,420 students from kindergarten to secondary school ages in the area and they will all have access to the space. There are IT classes in the schools but most don’t have computers so the hub will bring these lessons to life. Teachers have already volunteered to run extra workshops here. We are very grateful for the donation of six fully refurbished laptops to assist in the teaching. We have also been asked for a projector which we will attempt to find for free. (Any suggestions please let us know!)

The library, will be open from 7am to 9pm Monday to Saturday. This means everyone can benefit around farming, work, school and other commitments. Some of the retired teachers in the village have offered to run the library and they will be supported by Kenneth Norviewu, the Assembly Member for Lolobi and Prefects from the schools.

Elders, Athemasius Kwaku and Michael Marcelinusoyeh are especially looking forward to creating a space where the adult population can enjoy reading for pleasure. They are well educated and want to read, but currently don’t have books available to them. We have applied to Book Aid International to supply the books as they have been so supportive of the other libraries we work with.

There are four cubicles for toilets and washrooms which we will also refurbish so that everyone using the hub can wash and use the bathroom. This continues our mission to improve health as well as supporting education and well being.

The building has been donated by a member of the community, however it needs a lot of work! Thanks to some kind supporters we have fixed the roof to ensure no more damage is done. We are currently fundraising for the rest of the costs. We hope we can raise the funds soon to turn this into a wonderful space for all to enjoy.


Inflation in Ghana Hits Horrific 54.1% as all Food Costs Surge

Food prices rose 59.7% and transport costs increased 71.4%

Sound file click to play

The cost of living crisis is affecting all of us, from weekly shops going up to turning the heating down. The situation in Ghana is extreme, it has one of the highest rates of inflation in the entire world. 

This was very apparent when visiting Hohoe at the weekend. The market is usually full of cheer & colour with dozens of stalls selling all your basic needs, and a few luxuries. But now it is quiet, many stalls are closed and the ones remaining are even more eager for business from the very few customers.

June 2019 Before inflation
January 2023. Where are all the people?

In the past six months fuel prices have risen 200% and a Gallon of oil which cost 1,400 cedi in June was 3,000 cedi at the weekend, and prices are rising every single day. 

The effect of these fuel increases was clearly visible at taxi rank in the centre of the town. Usually it’s a place full of noise, hustle & bustle with bus conductors shouting “cra, cra ,cra” to encourage people to board their bus to Accra. However, it is now eerily quiet. People can no longer afford to travel. 

Amos, who makes his living driving a tuk-tuk, describes the situation as, “very, very bad.” 

Amos in his tuk tuk
The tuk tuk his only source of income

Last year it would cost him 25 cedi to fill the tank of his small motor, now it’s up to 90 cedi. 

Based around 9km from the market town, Kpando, most of Amos’ custom was taking women to the market there. 

Due to the fuel increases he has had to put his prices up but people cannot afford it. 

Now most of the women walk the 18km round trip, carry heavy supplies on their heads all the way home in the heat. The journey on foot can take up to six hours. The time used to make this trek takes time away from working on their farms, where they grow food to feed their families. 

The exchange rate has also had a huge effect. It is now around 13 cedi to the US dollar, six months previously it was around 5 cedi. 

Ghana relies heavily on imported goods, especially in agriculture; chemicals for farming, fertiliser, etc. It is now 650 cedi for a 50kg bag of fertiliser, in June it was 100 cedi. 

Farmers, both commercial and subsistence, now can’t produce as much because of high cost of agriculture imports. 

The prices of everything have risen so much that many people in the villages we work in only have one meal a day. 

As a small charity working with these communities, we too are feeling the struggles. Most of our income comes in GB pounds (with some New Zealand dollars & Euros too – thank you to our donors around the world!) While the exchange rate might benefit spending pounds it doesn’t outweigh the huge increases on the cost of materials we use. 

We are currently working with the community in Lolobi to build a library and computer lab. The budget for this has risen by 100% since we first costed it, only a few months ago. And it is likely to keep increasing.

The need is greater yet the cost and ability to raise funds so much harder. Especially with everyone, even our donors, affected by the cost of living in their own countries. 

If you can, please help us do our part in making this situation just a little bit better. Donate today or if you too are struggling and can’t afford a donation we would love to support you in running a fundraising event, contact us for more information. Together we can make a difference. 

June 2019 Colourful Hustle and Bustle
January 2023 Almost empty streets


Beautiful Ghanain products selling at a school fete

When we were last in Ghana we bought loads of lovely printed fabric. We then asked Charlotte, Promise and Janet in Alavanyo to make them up into different sizes of shoulder and cosmetic bags. Working with the local seamstresses enables them to earn a trade and us to fundraise by selling their beautiful items. They look wonderful. The Swan School in Oxford was the site for our first attempt at selling at a craft fair and not only did we sell well but were able to explain the ethos of our charity to many of the visitors.

Thank you to everyone who bought something or just had a chat about what Community Action Ghana does.

Adrian at our market stall

If you would like to buy some of the bags please visit our Etsy shop or come to the Etsy Oxford Christmas market on Sunday 4th December in the Examination Hall on Oxfords High Street.

Some of our stock

Cosmetic bags
Shopping bag
Our Stock ‘cupboard’


Volunteer Carpenters finish work on Amazing Lolobi Hub roof

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Four volunteer carpenters from the village of Lolobi Ashiambi in the Volta region of Ghana are busy repairing the roof. They are being helped by a number of labourers. All of them are giving up their time repairing this building for use by the village.

Community Action Ghana has provided the new roofing sheets and timbers. These are necessary for a new roof that will last at least thirty years. This work has made the building weatherproof and ready for the next stage of renovation.

In less than a week the carpenters have fully replaced the roof so now it is totally waterproof. It looks amazing.

Just look at the difference a week makes.

We need to finish the renovation but to do so we need your help with fundraising.


Volunteers removing the rotten iron roofing sheets
and the rotten timbers


Shiney new Ghana produced Aluminium roofing
Just the last corner to do

The next stage will be to remove some internal walls and to glaze the windows. When it is finished it will host a library, a computer room, a sewing workshop and other rooms for use by the community.

The proposed floor plan encompasses all of the requests from the Village Development Committee who have asked Community Action Ghana to work with them to create this hub for use by both of the Lolobi communities

Rough floor plan of the Hub


Congratulations to a Long Distance Runner. Turning energy into projects.

What a brilliant way to help Community Action Ghana. This year Shinmyoung Choi ran the Oxford Half Marathon for Community Action Ghana. Up to date her fantastic supporters have raised £555. This goes a huge way towards our work. Thank you!

Getting ready at the start
Hardly out of breath at the 3 mile mark
Still cheerful at the finish

The money Shin has raised will fund:

  • The roofing sheets for a toilet block
  • A set of shelves and a table & chairs for a community library
  • And five bags of cement to help build the community toilets
Choosing books at Gbi-Wedbe
At 6.30 in the morning students use the library in Alavanyo Kpeme
Roofing sheets going on at Dzogbedze Toilet block

The toilets we have built, with communities in Ghana have been described as, “better than a bag of gold”! As well as saving lives they also provide dignity for all who use them. We are also always so delighted to see the libraries we have refurbished and stocked (with the help from Book Aid International) in full use. Pearl, the Library Prefect at Alavanyo Kpeme Library opens the library for her students at 6:30am so they can read their favourite books before school starts, as well as use it to study in after school.

Thank you so much again to Shin and everyone who has sponsored her – you make a difference to people’s lives everyday through your support.


Worry for families as floods hit Alavanyo’s farms

Whist this is not directly related to our charity work our work goes on in the community so what affects the community affects our ability to work with them.

Clemence our project manager has many jobs. As well as working for us and one of these is to to farm to provide food for his family. He grows a variety of crops cassava, maize, sweet peppers to name some. He has sent us these photos of his farm which was flooded by completely unusual floods. As you can see the harvest of maize and sweet peppers have been destroyed but the cassava is probably salvageable.

The worlds attention has been directed at the floods in Pakistan and now Australia but many countries in West Africa have been affected by flooding, with over 730,000 people affected.

With floodwaters washing over ground that is used for open defecation it creates the perfect situation for spreading diseases such as cholera. To help prevent this we need to build more toilets and provide clean water supplies.

A toilet block for a community can cost as little as £14,000 with about half of this being contributed by the community with their labour and locally available materials. A borehole and associated water tower can be as little as £12,000 again with about a third of this being contributed by the communities.

Please think about these ‘forgotten’ communities.

During the flood

Flood on the maize crop
Will there be anything to harvest?
The shelters on the farm are damaged as well

After it has receded

The maize crop. All destroyed
Sweet peppers All gone
The cassava (manioc) might provide some produce


A New Life for a Tired Building?

To listen to this blog please click the start icon >

Help us turn this into a fully functioning library with the community of Lolobi Ashambi.

It was wonderful in it’s hay day in the 1960s
but it needs lots of TLC

It has a well thought out floor plan
but needs rescuing soon

Deer Park School Cirencester England has donated £234.50 and the Leos of Cambridge High School New Zealand have raised and pledged $500 for this project. Once renovated this building will become the thriving hub of the village of Lolobi Ashambi.
But we are a long way from being able to turn this building into a library.
Will you join in and make it a reality?

Our project manager in the Volta region of Ghana is assessing the building and working out how much it will cost to rescue it and turn part of it into a library. The village development committee is assessing how else it will be used. Possibly a digital hub and sewing workshop to train seamstresses and tailors. To make this a reality we need your donations and when the time comes help stock it with good quality relevant materials and equipment.

We have successfully renovated other libraries such as the one used by students at Gbi-Wedbe Basic A School and Alavanyo Senior High Technical School where Pearl is the Library Prefect and keeps good care of the books and the community who read them.

Students in the Library at Gbi-Wedbe Basic A School
Students in the Library at Gbi-Wedbe Basic A School