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Beyond the Classroom

About Volunteering

To bring what you learn in the classroom into real-world practice, many courses have community-based fieldwork components. For example, in one journalism course, American and Ghanaian students are matched in teams and assigned to cover a specific "beat" for the semester, challenging each other to understand differences and probe similarities critically. In another popular course, American students read African theorists on representations of Africa in film and then collaborate with Ghanaian students on producing documentary films that represent their own experiences of Accra. Course work is often enhanced through visits to local museums and landmarks and trips to cultural events.

Because of student interest, community service is a very strong and exciting component of the study abroad experience in Ghana. Volunteers donate their time regularly to over a dozen meaningful service organizations. Past students have found this aspect of the program personally rewarding and a great opportunity to give something back to the society.

Internship and Volunteer Placements

The following is a list of internship/service placements currently available to NYU Accra students.  Please note that this list is subject to change.  Additional opportunities may be available upon arrival in Accra.


AACT ‘s mission is to support the families of children with autism. In order to achieve this, AACT focuses on the following areas: promoting awareness and understanding of autism in Ghana and providing training and educational services to children with autism in order for them to function more effectively in society.

Autism is rarely known in Ghana and often linked to superstitious beliefs. Thus it is the prime objective of AACT is to provide a safe place for families to come for understanding, information and education about the disorder. Some of the work undertaken by the center include: public awareness to reduce the stigma around the disorder, life skills training, educational approaches to teaching languages and communication, art and music therapy, physical education, train care givers, field trips and extra curricular activities, respite care for families.

AACT is an interesting place for students undertaking various projects and research into disorders and disabilities in children especially in the area of autism.

La Enobal No. 2 Junior High School was established in 1957. It was founded by Mr. Okole and was later taken over by the government of Ghana. It has a student population of 300 students. It is located in the La community of Accra. As public school, it has served as a good resource for educating thousands of students since its establishment.

Some of the courses taught at La Enobal include, math, English language, social studies, cultural studies, integrated science, home economics, etc. Volunteers from NYU in Ghana have had wonderful moments undertaking tasks and duties on various activities such as teaching English, math, computer studies and sports.


• Teaching
• Implementation of educational projects (e.g. environmental club project)
• Sporting activities
• Creative art
• Please note that tasks may change depending on the needs

La Enobal is about 5 minutes drive away from the academic center.

The Morning Star School was founded in 1965 by the late Mrs. Esme Siribo. It began as a pre-school with seven pupils and jt has blossomed over the past years into one of the best first cycle Christian school in Ghana. The School has 1370 students enrolled ifrom kindergarten to the 9th grade. The school is located about 3 minutes drive from the Academic Centre on Labone Avenue.

Volunteers may assist a teacher to grade assignments, teach a lesson in English, Math and Science, Art etc or help out with any of the clubs in the school such as: School Choir, Gospel Band, Boys Scout, Girl Guides, Creative Writing, Needle work and craft, Pottery and Ceramics, Red Cross, Drama and Debate Flute Ensemble, Fitness Club and AFS. 

New Horizon Special School, Accra Ghana is a purpose built establishment started by a mother with a handicapped daughter with the support of some parents and friends in January 1972. The school provides day school education for children and vocational training and employment for adults who are intellectually challenged. Persons with other disabilities - e.g. spastics, cerebral palsy, visually impaired hearing etc., are also admitted so long as their disability is a learning difficulty. Presently, over 140 students aged four through forty years attend the school. The school is located in Cantoments, about 5 minutes drive from the NYU in Ghana Academic centre. Volunteers may assist in the following areas:

  • Teaching music, singing or any form of craft
  • Assist a teacher for half a day or a full day in the classroom in specific tasks
  • Assist in administrative work or in making educational material under the Director's supervision
  • Assist with fundraising and public relations activities

State School for the Deaf is a public school within the Ghana Education service set-up. The School was established at Osu in 1965 by Dr. Seth Tetteh-Ocloo who is himself deaf and is now in America. The school was then known as Osu Deaf Mission Center. It was later taken over by the Government in 1969 and was renamed State school for the Deaf. The school is currently located at Ashaiman near Tema.

The school has as its objective the education of the deaf who for their severe hearing impairment, their educational needs, appropriate educational programs and other related services cannot be provided in the regular school. The State School for the Deaf program begins at the pre-school level and continues through Primary to the Junior Secondary school (JSS). Essentially, the academic curriculum is the same as that of the regular public school programs. Strong emphasis however is placed upon language and communication. The regular academic program is supplemented and reinforced by a pre-vocational program. Currently, the school is made up of 230 pupils and staff strength of 42.

Volunteers could work in the vocational department, teach sports and offer basic computer training to pupils or even help in the drama and dance department.


Osu Children's Home is a community for orphaned, abandoned and needy children from ages zero to eighteen years. It was started in 1949 by an NGO known as Child Care Society. It was then located in the premises of the present Cripples Home at Kaneshie, a suburb in Accra, the capital of Ghana. In March 1960 the government took over and moved it to its present location. It was put under the management of the Department of Social Welfare and has been as such up to date.

Volunteers are accepted from all over the world. Supervision for volunteers is provided by the home. Volunteers are expected to assist in areas of:

  • Teaching
  • Taking children out for walks and places of interest
  • Helping with home work
  • Sports
  • Creativity
  • Mending of clothes, furniture, etc., painting
  • Washing, playing and feeding of babies
  • Providing love and attention

Beacon House is a home for biologically orphaned children (that is children who have lost both parents). Presently, there are 20 children living in the house and their ages range from 3 to 11 years.

It is not an institution and the atmosphere in the house is that of a home with many children. In order to provide the children with a warm, secure, and caring environment, the home has two house mothers (one for every 10 children), a cook, a housekeeper, a driver, a gardener, and security men for the night time.


Beacon House is looking for enthusiastic individuals to plan activities, teach, and play with the children. We particularly need assistance in the following areas:

• Assist in teaching the children in the schoolroom

• Teach drama

• Teach dance and music

• Sports and game teaching

• Help with IT, fundraising, administration

• Share professional skills with the staff

The orphanage’s greatest need at the moment is a volunteer teacher. Most of the children come from northern Ghana so their primary language is Frafra. In order for them to integrate into the public schools system in Accra, they need to learn English. It is seeking to provide them with a solid background in reading, writing and arithmetic.

Volunteers should be aware that Beacon House is a Christian organization and the children are raised with Christian beliefs. Religious study is taught in the school, there are prayer sessions before bedtime, grace before mealtimes and the children attend Sunday school at a local Christian Center.

When thinking about how best to help and fit in as a volunteer, you should consider your stay as visiting someone’s house. The day-to-day running of the home is done by the staff that has developed routines that work well for the children – providing a warm, secure, and stable environment.


GrassRootsAfrica was founded in 2002 and legally certified in June 2004 as a not for-profit organization. It has its head office in Madina in Accra, an officer for Northern Ghana and Burkina Faso located in Navrongo, Garu and Berekusu.


To create a just and fairer society in which the rights and well-being of citizens become the justification for the existence of governments and policy makers.


To provide research and advocacy in support of citizen’s initiatives that promotes and protects rights, ensure personal security and enhanced well-being, particularly of the disadvantaged in society.

Thematic Areas

Trade and Economic Justice

At the international level the organization advocate for a flexible, transparent, equitable and just trading system with the objective of making trade work for ordinary people.

At the regional level, it advocates and campaigns for people-centered trade and economic integration and seeks alliances with international civil society formations for the purpose of advocating for equitable trade relations with the rest of the world.

We are also pursuing a campaign for total debt cancellation for poor countries, and advocating for pro-poor and gender sensitive planning and budget policies in Africa.
Grassrootsinitiative also works to influence policy in favour of small-scale producers in Ghana and Africa and for the recovery of the lost African market.

Rights, Civic Actions and Governance

Under this program it works to:
• Promote and consolidate the Rights of citizens to-
• Participate in governmental processes and to elect and be elected

Basic and essential services such as water, sanitation, health and education

• Improve transparency in government business through planning, budget and procurement transparency

• Enhance the capacity of citizens to hold public duty holders accountable

• Create platforms and opportunities for continuous dialogue between citizens, government and the private sector for purposes of equitable and sustained development.

Since its founding in 1976 by Millard and Linda Fuller, Habitat for Humanity International has built and rehabilitated more than 150,000 houses with families in need, becoming a true world leader in addressing the issues of poverty housing.

In Ghana, local and Global Village volunteers have built as many as 1,000 houses, mostly in neighborhoods on the outskirts of rural villages. The buildings are simple, made of mud-bricks mortared over with zinc or cement-tile roofing.

The houses would be built with no profit added and no interest charged. Building would be financed by a revolving Fund for Humanity. Financing of these projects come from the new homeowners' house payments, donations and no-interest loans provided by supporters and money earned by fund-raising activities. 

JayNii Streetwise Organisation (JSO) is a registered entity G-23,946 with the Registrar General's Department, having a goal of promoting the welfare of vulnerable young ones in deprived communities through education, sports, arts and culture.
We are a Not-For-Profit organisation dedicated to keeping the children of Jamestown, Accra and its environs, off the streets and in school, providing them with an education and a chance for a better future.

Streetwise Project

Provide 50 children with all needed stationery, uniform, shoes, bags, and materials to attend school
Provide extracurricular activities for children in drumming, creative arts, reading, sports, dance and assist children with their curricular studies and homework after school
Provide accommodation, food, cloth, shelter, medical care, and pastoral care to needy children who wondered where the next meal was coming from
Counselling families on the importance of education, many of these children’s parents are illiterate themselves and do not appreciate the value of education.

The scheme provides financial assistance for children who are in some of the most deprived and needy households in Ghana.
The scheme aims to provide at least nine years of formal basic education in Ghana from kindergarten to JHS for children from 4 to 16 years.


Needy children drawn from deprived villages and communities within which JSO works.
Orphans and Needy children under the care of single parents or incapacitated parents;
Children of economically overburdened and distressed families (Large families for


* Improve the quality of lives of young people
* Get children off the street and put them into the classroom
* Provide them with skills
* Create the opportunity for them to make use of their acquired skill
* Empower them to know they are talented and deserve to join the ranks of educated youngsters.
* Promote and encourage education for all children and help prepare them for a better future
* Promote global peace and understanding through children exchange programme.
* Create global awareness among children
* Participate in international children and youth conferences, seminars, festivals, campfires, retreats
* Enabling Africans to appreciate their cultural values
* Exposing the rich culture of Ghana to the world

The West Africa AIDS foundation is a registered NGO, and a partner of the Ghana AIDS Commission. WAAF believes that in providing education, counseling, care and support for the purpose of inducing behavioral change in sexual norms of the populace that are known to have a high incidence of HIV/AIDS in Ghana.

WAAF provides a wide range of services including:

  • Free Consultation/Counseling
  • Treatment of Opportunistic Infections
  • CD4 Count Monitoring and Assessment
  • STD Treatment
  • Immune Booster Treatment
  • Bereavement Counseling
  • HIV/AIDS related workshops

HIV/AIDS education Information:

  • Condom promotion and distribution
  • Workshops and Seminars
  • Peer education training

WAAF also specializes in voluntary counseling and testing.

Volunteers and Interns are the West Africa AIDS Foundation's greatest resource. These people usually assist in the following areas:

  • One on one visiting and support
  • Preparation of brochures/newsletters
  • Website design
  • Home support and hospice care
  • HIV/AIDS Education and Outreach
  • Attending to patients in the clinic
  • Voluntary Counseling and Testing (VCT) field work
  • Data Entry
  • Childcare
  • Staffing fundraising events
  • Reception duties
  • Clerical work

RESPECT Ghana is an affiliate of RESPECT International which is committed to raising awareness among international youth about refugees and refugee issues, encouraging activism among youth and further empowering refugee children and communities through letter and cultural exchange, through the donation and transport of education-related material aid. In line with the stated goals of RESPECT International, RESPECT Ghana is also poised to fully serve as the link between the international community and the refugee community in Ghana.

RESPECT Ghana has a team of volunteers currently running the affairs of the organization and has other volunteer experts who are contributing their ideas as to how programs and activities could be initiated to raise general awareness about refugee issues, to bridge the gap between students in developed worlds and refugee students as well as liaise with international affiliates to see how best refugees could be assisted.

RESPECT Ghana has also outlined a number of future programs and plans as well as its readiness to offer its rich human resource to work in partnership with any organization that seeks to be interested in refugee issues and matters relating to human rights and global peace.

United Way Ghana (UWG) is a not-for-profit organization that seeks to build community capacity for sustainable development in the areas of health, education, and income generation through collaborative efforts of all stakeholders.

UWG works with both donors and charities and is therefore, in a unique position to support the needs of both groups. For many corporate institutions, supporting communities in need is very much part of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). United Way Ghana works through community based organizations to offer structured services to underprivileged communities. Through our Corporate Partnership Program, we custom tailor interventions to fit the level of community investment a corporate body wants to deliver.

UWG is a member of United Way Worldwide (UWW). Headquartered in the United States, UWW is a global network of 47 member countries with 4500 affiliate offices developing models for sustainability impact at the community level.

Public Health

Child and Associates is a private health care center located in Accra.

To maintain the highest level of health and well being of children and their families in Africa.
To develop the human capital of West Africa to the highest quality of health both physically and emotionally.
Offer highest quality medical care to all families in West Africa.
Provide up to date medical education to parents
Provide Public Health support to families, schools and child-care agencies
To foster child advocacy in regional legislation and policy development
To provide preventive and curative medical care of the highest quality
Routinely, Child and Associates offers the following services to clients
• Trauma care
• Asthma
• Seizure disorders
• Medical evaluations
• Medi-evacuation
• House calls
• Skin repair clinics
• Hospital care management
Developmental & Behavioral assessment:
• Bedwetting (medical and behavioural management)
• Behavioral problems
• Chronic Constipation
• Eating Problems
• Learning Problems
• School delay
Public health services include
• Screenings
• Vacinations
• Consultancies
• Informational brochures
• Seminars

HIV Screening and Care
• Pre-employment/work permit medicals
• Travel medicine packs
• Study tour participant emergency care
• Postgraduate studentpre
• Pre-employment / Work permit Medicals
• Travel medicine packs
• Study Tour participant emergency care
• Postgraduate student preceptorship in Child Health, Nutrition, HIV, Public Health

GHANET is a group of non-profit organizations, community-based, public institutions and individuals living with HIV/AIDS. They have come together to form what is known today as the Ghana HIV-AIDS network (GHANET). The idea of a network was conceived in May 1996, when stakeholders in HIV / AIDS prevention in Ghana felt a gap in the co-ordination of HIV/AIDS activities, funding and program planning, with the result that there was gross duplication of efforts and waste of human and material resources. Access to information was also very difficult at the time. GHANET, as it is constituted now provides a forum mainly for information and experience sharing towards effective programming planning especially at the grass-root level. Members are encouraged to also share their human and material resources.


Specifically, GHANET's objectives are to:

1. Establish a broad-based forum for stakeholders to broaden members' understanding and knowledge of HIV/AIDS issue, in order to plan and execute more effective
HIV/AIDS programmes.

2. Promote frequent interaction and sharing of ideas, experiences, skills and best practices.

3. Fight all forms of discrimination and stigmatization against persons living with HIV / AIDS (PWLAs)

4. Conduct advocacy for prioritization of funding and use of resources.

5. When necessary to act as a pressure group.

Informed by the Millennium Development Goals for health, including maternal and child health, the Longevity Project for Africa (Longevity Project Africa) seeks to evolve as an effective umbrella organization for individual countries' efforts to increase the life expectancy and quality of life of their respective populations. The Longevity Project in Ghana, registered under the laws of Ghana in November 2004, will serve as a pilot for similar initiatives throughout Africa.
The project seeks to solve health-related problems in Ghana including the following;

1.Life Expectancy in Ghana: 56-58 years
2. Quality of Life: fairly low due to relative ill health, low productivity and resulting in poverty.
3. Infectious diseases such as malaria and HIV/AIDS (emerging epidemic)
4. Malnutrition
5. Maternal and infant morbidity and mortality;
6. Chronic, non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as diabetes, hypertension,
heart disease and cancer..
7. Lack of awareness of dangers that bad hygiene, poor diet, lack of physical
exercise and chronic stress pose to our health and quality of life.

The project is looking for volunteers to help with the following;
1: Increase public awareness of link between lifestyle choices and health
2: Support health and fitness efforts
3: Fund continuing research to increase availability of scientific health data specific to Ghanaians or Africans
4: Reduce impediments/barriers to health and fitness
5: Generate and raise funds to sustain and strengthen programs.
All fundraising efforts will have the dual aims of generating funds for set goals and objectives.

Arts and Media

The Foundation for Contemporary Art was founded to create an active network of artists and a critical forum for the development of contemporary art in Ghana. It exists to raise awareness of, and develop critical thinking within contemporary art in Ghana by organizing exhibitions, seminars, workshops and publications.

Housed in the WEB Dubois Center for Pan African Culture, the FCA is looking for volunteers with proposal writing and fund raising skills, curators and people to work on newsletters/publications. NYU in Ghana students have in the past volunteered with FCA and found their experiences very rewarding. 

Agoro Mmutae (Creative Zone) is a community -based organization that is committed to giving opportunities to young people to develop their skills in photography and to express themselves artistically.

The organization’s activities include teaching young people how to use cameras, developing and printing of films, writing skills, how to make a story book, how to make a wall hanging, how to organize a photo shoot, and how to combine computer skills with photography. ‘Agoro Mmutae’ is an Akan expression meaning “learning with a purpose”.

There is an also an Adinkra studio at Creative Zones which facilitates the activities and projects of the organization. Thus, the studio empowers young people who have dreams and creativity but are hindered by poverty. It offers them material support such as clothing, stationery, food, play tools, computers, education, etc. These underprivileged children are mentored, motivated and counseled as a way of granting them some psychological support.

Global Media Alliance Limited is an International Communications Company founded in 1998 in South Africa. GMA is a corporate member of the International Public Relations Association (IPRA). The company is specialized in the provision of a broad range of communication services to clients including:
Public Relations, Political Analysis and Positioning, Corporate Affairs Public Affairs, Events Management, Media Relations, TV Productions, Corporate Documentaries, Program Distribution, Media Consultancy Services, Community Relations, Publishing of Marketing and Promotional Materials, CEO Reputation, Management and Crisis Management.

GMA promises exciting vacancies for interns/volunteers in events organization, newsletters/publications, CNN monthly reports on Africa, a new TV production dubbed “The Nation Builders” etc. 


Micro-Finance and Community Development Organization (MFCDO) is a non-governmental organization committed to poverty alleviation, community development and small-scale entrepreneurship through micro-finance services. It works in collaboration with its Community Based Organizations (CBOs) involved in various forms of community work. Our principal implementing partner is the Open-Heart Solution Agency (OHSA), which has been practicing micro-finance and community development programs and seeking to promote the culture of savings through what is known in Ghana as "Susu. Susu" - a savings mobilization from the informal sector in Ghana.

Other community-based projects include:

  • Open Heart Solution Applied Computer Training Institute (OHSACTI) -offering computer training to refugees
  • Women of Glory - offering skills training for Refugee women
  • SEA de ARC, church based youth group
  • Yaalex Investments providing micro loans and savings facilities through Susu
  • Refugee Women Development Program- Network of refugee womens' groups involved in skills training.

The organization provides opportunities for voluntary works, internships, study visits and other cross-cultural learning experiences.

Volunteers are likely to be involved in one or several of the following

  • Susu collection among market women
  • Administrative work
  • Financial Records and Administration
  • Working with women and refugee women
  • Working among refugees
  • Teaching
  • Health Promotion: HIV/AIDS Campaign and Education
  • Fundraising
  • Project creation and management

Apply Now!
Volunteering in Accra, Ghana

Internship Seminar and Fieldwork
For students interested in a more formal, reflexive fieldwork experience, NYU Accra offers a credit-bearing seminar sponsored by the department of Social and Cultural Analysis and NYU's Gallatin School of Individualized Study. While engaged in fieldwork at a selected set of community organizations and NGOs, students participate in an academic seminar that helps make sense of the issues that arise in their community work, the structure and methods of the organizations where they work, and their own place in the process.

Your experience as a community volunteer will be a highly individualized opportunity that enhances your cultural immersion. NYU Accra staff will help you select the appropriate organization for your volunteer experience, drawing on their relationships with local community organizations. For example, you may find yourself working with the Elim Cluster of Schools, where teach elementary students. At the West Africa AIDS Foundation, you'll assist with patient visits, counseling, and fund-raising events.

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