Two local nurse educators from Douglas College have taken their students education to a new location this past year. Frankadua, Ghana is a rural community in the Easter region, bordering Volta region.
Due to delays because of COVID, this field school took 3 years of planning and designing and multiple trips for organization and relationship building before the trip in May of 2023 with the students. This incredible field school was designed and planned by Tonya Roy and Leisha Vandermey, two veteran maternity and pediatric nurses, whom have strong passion for transformative learning and the power of connection.
Nursing people takes passion, compassion, connection, and purpose. Learning, working, and playing with people helps to break down cultural barriers that often exist, then the seeds of compassion, understanding and connection are easy to grow. The field school in Ghana has been a source of great relationships, projects and meaning for both the citizens of Frankadua and the Douglas College nursing students.
Tonya and Leisha found the most rewarding experience was to witness the growth in their students both personally and professionally and the respect all of them embodied for the local community. They forged deep, authentic, positive and reciprocal connections with the people of Frankadua.
During the trip the teachers and students worked at clinics, medical outreach (servicing medical needs in remote areas accessible by motorbike only), first aid at events and schools, teaching, and childcare. It is this work that sparked a desire to work throughout the year to help bigger projects that would create sustainable solutions to problems faced in areas that struggled with basic needs such as clean water access and health care options.
Tonya and Leisha created Ubuntu Hope Charity, to solve this need. During COVID they raised enough money to build a maternity clinic, and this past May Tonya and her students delivered 3 babies during their two-week visit. Clean water access was created in three locations in Frankadua. Over 125 children were provided with health care costs and access for the year, paid by the donations made to Ubuntu Hope Charity. This charity is unique in the sense that all the people involved are volunteers, and that 96% of the money goes directly into the projects in Ghana, Kenya and Dominican.
On October 14, 2023 at the New Westminster Secondary School Commons, Ubuntu Hope Charity is hosting a giving Gala. The night will be filled with entertainment, stories and experiences of the their trips to Ghana and the people they support, Silent Auction (with products and services from both Ghana and Canada), market, great food, and lots of music! The doors open at 6:30 pm and the evening ends at 12:30 am. We look forward to seeing all of you there for a fun, entertaining evening that will support all future projects.
Maternal home with orphanage build (land is already purchased) Ghana
Drilling and creation of water pump stations (3 locations) Ghana
Funding for health insurance for children and expecting mothers (Frankadua, Ghana)
Soccer Academy and School (Frankadua, Ghana)
Funding for education with children living with disabilities (Frankadua, Ghana)
Vegetable and Fruit program, Agape Hope Children’s Centre (Nairobi, Kenya)
By Leisha Vandermey