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Ghana Leadership Program
March 2017


The Ghana Leadership Program provides a once in a lifetime experience to partake in service learning, volunteerism, and educational programs in one of the most beautiful places on earth.
Participants will travel to Ghana and connect with the schools, missions, and parishes of the Presentation Brothers and Jesuit Fathers. Ghana is a stable democracy and a former member of the Commonwealth.
 
Participants will have the opportunity to explore and enhance their leadership through combining meaningful service learning and educational activities.   Participants will spend the vast majority of their time volunteering at local schools, teaching, and helping in concrete ways to improve the local community, while having the opportunity to interact intensively with the local people.   Moreover, hands on learning about development, world issues, leadership, environmental conservation and biodiversity through interactive seminars will engage individuals to consider the importance and challenges of much needed development, while ensuring the protection of the world’s most wondrous flora and fauna. Students will also learn about the history of slavery.

Rationale
The motivation for this proposal was derived from the personal and professional experiences of its authors in conjunction with the vision prescribed by the Toronto Catholic District School Board (TCDSB).  The authors believe that Learning, Leadership, and Service within the context of Safe Adventure is a very powerful educational paradigm. This experience will enhance the historic links between Brebeuf College School and the Presentation Brothers and Jesuit Fathers and give students and teachers the chance to put faith into action for the common good.

Service Learning
A unique and distinguishing component of this program is the concept of “service learning”.  Service learning can be identified as experiential education when the learner adopts a life role that provides meaningful service to a community in order to learn about oneself and others.  The pedagogical value of the service increases when the following are added to the learning:  an academic component designed to prepare the learner in terms of content and competencies relevant to the service; an opportunity to reflect upon and think critically about the experience; an element of adventure and challenge; an international and cross-cultural context; and an alignment of individual, placement, and system goals. 

Affiliation
The delivery of this programme is in conjunction with Adventure Learning Experiences Inc., the Toronto Catholic District School Board, Brebeuf College School, the Presentation Brothers, and the Jesuit Fathers. The two religious orders, which formerly administered Brebeuf College, have had an extensive presence in Ghana for over 40 years. Through dedicated service in their schools, parishes, and missions, they have helped to lift people out of poverty and give them skills to be able to help themselves. These connections ensure a warm welcome for us and active co-operation and advice throughout the trip.

 

Participants

Students
Approximately 20 students will be selected for admission to this program with at least 3 teaching supervisors.  This number has been governed by the practical exigencies of traveling to these areas of the world.  Students will be selected according to the following criteria:
 
            1.        Trustworthiness and reliability
            2.        Respectfulness of other people and cultures
            3.        Adaptability to new experiences
            4.        Parental support

           
Interested students will be invited to submit an application and two letters of reference.  All participants will also be expected to complete a TCDSB Parent/Guardian Informed Consent Form For International Excursions.  The limitations of TCDSB responsibilities with respect to this program are also indicated in a letter from Adventure Learning Experiences Inc. to Mr. Alex Mazzucco, who is an officer with TCDSB. 

Code of Conduct
Each student will be expected to pledge commitment to a Code of Conduct,  which will be designed to ensure that respect for each participant, his/her property, and well-being is safeguarded.  This code will preclude harassment and abusiveness and will prohibit the use of alcohol and drugs.  Above all, the rights and responsibilities of all participants will be clearly defined so that the objectives of this program may be achieved within a healthy and safe environment. 

Adult Supervision
There will be three teacher supervisors who will be taking part in this program.  They also see the experience as opportunities for their own personal and professional development. Instruction for the preparatory learning program will be led by these teachers, and all will be accompanying the students to Ghana.

Interviews
Each applicant and his/her parents will be invited to a private interview with the Directors to assess his/her suitability for the program. This will also give the applicant and parents the opportunity to determine if the program serves their needs and interests. Each applicant will be asked to bring their letters of reference to this meeting as well their most recent report card. Interviews will take place on October 16 at the Catholic Education Centre, 80 Sheppard Ave. E. in Toronto at 9:00 a.m.. All deposits will be refundable in the event that the applicant is refused.

Program Design
The authors propose that this learning program be offered as a one or two credit co-operative education model using the Interdisciplinary Studies curriculum document.  The courses will be designated IDC3O and IDC4U and will derive learning expectations from a variety of courses.  

In-Class Component
These meetings will take place on the following dates: 

Sunday October 16, 2016 9:00 - 2:00 p.m.   5 hours
Sunday October 30, 2016 9:00 - 2:00 p.m.   5 hours
Sunday November 13, 2016 9:00 - 2:00 p.m.   5 hours
Sunday December 4, 2016 9:00 - 2:00 p.m.   5 hours
Sunday January 15, 2017 9:00 - 2:00 p.m.   5 hours
Friday February 3, 2017 9:00 - 5:00 p.m.   8 hours
Saturday, February 4, 2017 9:00 - 5:00 p.m.   8 hours
Sunday February 5, 2017 9:00 - 5:00 p.m.   8 hours
Sunday February 12, 2017 9:00 - 2:00 p.m.   5 hours
Sunday February 26, 2017 9:00 - 2:00 p.m.   5 hours
Sunday March 29, 2017 9:00 - 2:00 p.m.   5 hours
Sunday April 9, 2017 9:00 - 2:00 p.m.   5 hours
Sunday April 30, 2017 9:00 - 2:00 p.m.   5 hours

There will be 7 additional meetings arranged during the experiential component (35 hours). 

There will be one formal examination that will be scheduled following the group's return from Ghana. This date will be determined shortly.  

The assignments in this program are designed to provide background to the course themes and to stimulate relevant learning and personal reflection.  To this end required readings will be assigned and considerable options with respect to written assignments will be offered.  There will be two types of written assignments: 

1.    Discovery Paper:  This is primarily intended for learning new information
                                        about a topic.
                                         
2.    Reaction Paper:  This is primarily intended for reflecting about a course theme that was                                       previously reviewed in class, was part of one’s experiences on the                                       trip, or contained in a reading. 


Learning Resources 

Primary Resources:

Lewis, S. (2005).  Race Against Time. Toronto: House of Anansi Press. (232 pages)

Meredith, M. (2006). The Fate of Africa: Hopes of Freedom and Hearts of Despair.

Presentation Brothers (2009). At the Desert’s Edge .

Wise, M. (2002). The Travel Doctor. Toronto: Firefly Books.

Secondary Resources:

Dowden, Richard. Africa: Altered States, Ordinary Miracles .  New Jersey: Prentice-Hall. 

Mountjoy, A.B. & Hilling, D. (1988).  Africa:  Geography and Development.  New Jersey: Barnes & Noble Books. 

Experiential Component
This excursion to Ghana will serve as the Service Learning component of the program.  

There will be a variety of service learning opportunities distributed across a few locations.   The primary focus will be to volunteer in various local settings.  Formal classes will be conducted whereby teachers and students will be given opportunities to discuss their reactions to the learning experiences and which will offer support for their adjustment to the new environments.  Upon returning to Canada, the students will meet to reflect and process their experiences, and will be given an opportunity to formally present their learning to family and friends.  

Topics for discussion during classes in Africa will be governed by the nature of the activities in which the students will be engaged.  Daily journal writing will be an essential component of this time.  A composite journal with representation from each participant will be compiled, edited, and published upon completion of the course.

Service and Leadership Opportunities

  1. Community development: Lend your hands to volunteer at schools and missions.
  2. Cultural education: Attend workshops, walk through traditional villages, and learn local languages.
  3. Leadership training: Experience intensive and interactive training.
  4. Environmental education: Learn about environmental challenges on a fieldtrip.
  5. African adventures: Visit Kakum National Park Rainforest and Elmina Slave Castle. 

Travel dates:  March 2 to March 19, 2017

Experiential Component :     

````````
Date Itinerary
March 2 Evening departure from Toronto to Accra
March 3 Evening arrival in Accra.
Stay in Catholic guest house - Good Shepherd
Evening meal and rest.
March 4 Fly to Tamale, bus to Yendi
Accomodations - St. martin's Spiritual Centre
Orientation Programme - local customs, language, culture
March 5 Mass
Visit to Women's Shelter
March 6 Visit presentation JHS with formal welcome, flag ceremonies.
singing, drumming and dancing
Interaction with staff and students
Interactive games and activities
March 7 Teaching Classes - Arts and Drama
Service Activities
March 8 Service Activities/interaction with various classes - arts and academics
Olympics/Closing ceremonies
March 9 Farewell to Logre Depart to Logre, Comsi Comsa Hotel
Bolgatanga - Cultural Orientation
March 10 Formal welcome and ceremonies
Meet with Logre student leaders, plan classes
March 11 Paga Crocodile pond, Sirigue Orphanage
March 12 Mass at Sacred Heart Cathedral
Service Activities
March 13 Classes - Art/Drama
Olympics
Closing Ceremonies

March 14

Depart to Accra, Cape Coast

 
March 15 Visit Slave Castle  
March 16 Visit Kakum National Park  
March 17 Cape Coast - depart for Accra - stay at Catholic Guest House  
March 18 Market souvenirs
Depart for Toronto
 
March 19 Arrive in Toronto  

 

Travel Arrangements

Transportation
Local transportation will be organized and provided by local professionals as recommended by our hosts.  International air travel will be provided by a reputable national carrier.

                                              
Accommodation
In Ghana, the accommodations will be retreat centres or hotels recommended by the Presentation Brothers and Jesuit Fathers.   The adult supervisors will always reside in close proximity to the student residences.  Appropriate separation between genders will always be ensured in these residences. 

Finances
Cost $4295, includes all taxes and services charges, fees and gratuities
No price increases permitted.

Payments

            $   695             Deposit accompanying application
            $1,200             December 4, 2016
            $1,200             January 15, 2017
            $1,200             February 26, 2017

Payment Options: P
a) personal cheques, payable to Adventure Learning Experiences Inc.
b) e-transfer to info@adventurelearningexperiences.com
c) Visa or Mastercard (2% surcharge on credit card payments)

Inclusions
Economy return airfare: Toronto to Accra return
2 regional flights: Accra-Tamale return
all ground transportation, all meals and accommodations
preparatory learning program

Exclusions
cost of passport and Ghana visa ($65 US)
any medical costs and inoculations
out-of-country health insurance and cancellation insurance (assistance available upon request)
textbook ($20), retreat ($30), and closing banquet in Accra ($30 US)
private expenses

Fundraising

There are two fundraising activities designed to help students offset their trip expenses.

Sponsor Booklet: This is intended to provide an overview of the program and will feature the participants. Students are invited to sell advertising for the booklet and these funds will be directly applied to their trip fee, except for a nominal fee for the printing of the booklets. Please be aware that advertisements that are purchased by companies in support of a student will not be eligible for a refund in the event that the particular participant being supported withdraws from the program.

Raffle: Students will be invited to proportionally share in the proceeds of a raffle that will be held in June. This optional activity is available to all participants who donate a raffle prize worth $75.

 

Financial Plan

Students are expected to take responsibility in planning to meet the financial commitment involved in this program. To assist in this, the participants will be expected to submit a plan to achieve this goal.

 

Refund Policy

For withdrawal before December 12, 2016, a full refund minus 50% of the deposit will be provided.

For withdrawal between December 12, 2016 and January 30, 2017, a full refund minus the deposit will be provided.

For withdrawal after January 30, 2017, no refund can be provided except through cancellation insurance (if purchased).


NOTE: It is the sole prerogative of each country or region to determine who is allowed to enter.
        

Documents
Passport: For Canadian citizens, it must be valid for at least three months beyond the date of expected departure.

Tourist Visa: A tourist Visa for Ghana is required.

Insurance
All participants are advised to consult with a reputable insurance company about out-of-province health insurance and cancellation insurance. The travel agency (Airliners) that is providing the air tickets offers such insurances. Its contact information is as follows:

Airliners
1220 Ellesmere Road
Toronto, ON M1P 2X5
www.airliners.ca
Attention: Zenab Warah
zenab@airliners.ca
416-485-6387



Health and Safety
Careful attention to sound health and safety practices will be an important part in the preparation of the program.  This will involve mandatory immunizations, learning  healthy eating and drinking habits, and understanding effective illness prevention practices. For maximum benefit it is recommended that participants, in general, be in good health and achieve a sufficient level of fitness prior to the trip.  Physical and dental check-ups are highly recommended prior to the departure date. 

Immunization

a)           The following are ordinarily administered through one’s family doctor in the course of                normal Ontario health care.  All participants are asked to ensure their protection with                inoculations against the following diseases:

               Tetanus – Diphtheria - Polio
               Measles-Mumps-Rubella

b)            Protection against malaria is by tablet and is taken on a regular basis prior, during, and                following the trip.  The exact regimen will be prescribed by a travel clinic. 
               All participants will be expected to bring a mosquito net and protective skin lotions. 

c)            Inoculations against the following may be required: 

                        Typhoid
                        Meningococcal meningitis
                        Hepatitis A
                        Hepatitis B
                        Yellow Fever (mandatory to apply for visa to Ghana)

The cost of these inoculations are not covered by OHIP but may be included in private health plans. 

Precautions

As indicated above, careful preparation prior to departure about safe eating and drinking habits and illness prevention practices will be undertaken.  Participants will be expected to purchase “The Travel Doctor” by Dr. Mark Wise (Firefly Books, 2002) as part of this preparation.  A close working relationship has been developed by the authors with Dr. Mark Wise.  Dr. Wise is a family physician in Willowdale, whose medical practice includes a travel clinic. He  is considered a leading authority in tropical and parasitic diseases.  Dr. Wise will conduct a 90 minute training workshop about preventative health practices for our students and parents in mid-February and will make recommendations about appropriate inoculations.

It is expected that our groups will greatly benefit from the local contacts which the authors have established in Ghana through the Presentation Brothers and Jesuit Fathers in the event that medical care in required. Each participant will be expected to purchase out-of-country health insurance. In addition, Dr. Lato and Mr. Greg Rogers are both members of the International Association for Medical Assistance to Travellers (IAMAT). 

It is most strongly recommended that each participant seek proper medical advice for all potential health concerns at a travel health clinic prior to departure. 

Each participant will be expected to complete the Consent to Medical Treatment Form in the event that urgent and emergency care is required.

 

Contact Information
Mr. Michael Rogers
Guidance Counsellor
Brebeuf College School
211 Steeles Ave. E.
M2M 3Y6
michael.rogers@tcdsb.org
416-393-5508
416-819-6101

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  • A 1 or 2 credit High School Course
  • Lend your hands to volunteer
    at schools and missions
  • Experience an African Safari
    in Mole National Park
  • Develop Your Leadership Skills Through Service



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ghana

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