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General News of Friday, 7 April 2017


MTN Heroes of Change: Joana Deegbe attempts to end street hawking with library

The academic performance of schoolchildren in Shiashie, a community in the Greater Accra Region, is picking up following the establishment of a community library in the area.

Previously school children there used to engage in selling of sachet water on the busy road after they closed from primary and junior high schools. But since the commencement of the Shiashie community library project by Madam Joana Mansah Deegbe, a philanthropist about five year ago the children put an end to street hawking. They go to the library to read, according residents.

Teachers of the community primary and junior high schools attributed the children’s recent academic performance to the community library and its founder, Madam Deegbe. “The children are improving because of their daily visit to the community library”, a JHS teacher.

Naa (real name withheld) said that she used to perform poorly in school but, after she started going to the community library after schools she is now fourth in her over 100-pupil class.

In this regard, the children and their parents are so happy to the extent of nominating Madam Deegbe to participate in this year’s MTN Heroes of Change.
It is currently aired on GTV every Saturday at 5:30pm;Multi TV on Sundays at 5:00pm;TV3 on Sundays at 6:30pm; and GhOne on Sundays at 7:00pm to highlight the humanitarian activities of Madam Deegbe and the other nine nominees.

The MTN Heroes of Change which is MTN Ghana Foundation flagship project was initiated in July 2013 to recognise and reward persons who have provided significant humanitarian services to their communities through personal sacrifices.

The MTN Ghana Foundation is the corporate social responsibility (CSR) arm of MTN Ghana, the leading telecoms service provider in the country.

Madam Deegbe who was featured prominently on the fifth episode of the ongoing season III of the MTN Heroes of Change, said: “I started the community library first in Adabraka but I observed the children in the Shiashie community need the library the most, so I moved it there”.

She revealed that so far about 500 children passed through her library to senior high schools, while about 100 children used the library as their main place of learning after school.

The activities at the library include reading and writing competitions, storytelling, art and craft exhibitions and Information and Communication Technology.

Madam Deegbe explained that the idea of community library was conceived long time to give special place for the children a place where they could develop their skills and learn new ones, which would help them through life.
The library is to promote and develop the joy of reading among children, many of whom do not ordinarily have access to the wide range of fiction, non-fiction and school textbooks and games and puzzles which the library will expose them to, she said.

Madam Deegbe through the community library is improving reading and literacy skills among the children in the Shiashie community. She therefore needs more resources to enable her expand the library to enroll more children into the programme.

So, if she wins the GHC 100,000 ultimate prize, it will go a long way to enhance her philanthropist work. Besides, the fame, the award will greatly motivate her to keep changing the lives in the area.

Madam Deegbe therefore needs your vote to win the ultimate prize. You can do so by texting his short code name (Joana) to 1406.