Glencliff gives back to Ghana

Glencliff Elementary students are lucky to have a library full of books to choose from at their school. However, many kids their age, across the world, aren’t so lucky. That’s why Glencliff students are partnering with the African Library Project to give back to a small school in Ghana that is currently without books.

The students are looking to collect 1,000 books to send to Fawotrie Kosie Primary and Junior High in the eastern region of Ghana, where there is about 200 students, ages three to 16. The only problem is, there is a lack of light during the students’ only free time, which is at night.

In order to alleviate that issue, a non-profit organization, Empower Playgrounds Inc. (EPI), started by the grandfather of a Glencliff student, installed a human-powered merry-go-round that generates electricity. That electricity then charges lanterns that the students take home to study and use to read at night.

EPI now partners with Playworld Systems, that same company that built the playground at Glencliff, to manufacture merry-go-round kits that can be shipped to Ghana and installed in the schools. They have installed more than 50 merry-go-rounds to date and are now partnering with the African Library Project to add libraries in some of the schools with merry-go-rounds.

That is where Glencliff students come in. Not only are they collecting the books, but they need to raise money in order to send the books to the students in Ghana. The shipping cost is $500, so students are collecting recyclables to reach the goal. Glencliff has partnered with Clynk, a bottle and can redemption center, which will give the school an additional 50 cents for every dollar, until March 26.

“This is a great school-wide initiative, where we are literally helping to build a library for other students, while teaching students what it means to help others,” Glencliff Elementary Principal Dr. Shelley Baldwin-Nye said.

So far, the students have collected around 750 books. If you would like to donate books or recyclables, you can bring them to the school. There are certain guidelines on what books can be sent to Ghana, so for those that do not meet the guidelines, they will be donated to a program called Reading is Fun.

If you’d like to see what the school in Ghana is like, and how the merry-go-rounds are built, check out this video (spoken in Dutch, with English subtitles).