+233 55 058 7816 info@bpdcghana.org P.O.Box TD 618 Habour Road, Takoradi Ghana

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Volunteer FAQ

Being a volunteer requires you to contribute your time and money to help those less fortunate while engaging in a great inter-cultural experience. By volunteering with BPDC you will be allowed to become integrated into a Ghanaian community. Our volunteers work in a friendly and safe environment, whilst having the chance to learn first hand about the cultural dynamics of African society. Get involved in a grassroots charity where you can truly get hands-on, make a significant impact, live together with and learn from the local community, and get a rewarding feeling that a donation only can’t bring to you. Our volunteers reside in a house within the local community of the Western Region. They enjoy great quality, traditional Ghanaian food daily.

No, you don’t. Anybody is welcome at BPDC. Some projects require higher education and some positions do require specific skills and previous experiences!

Pre-departure handbook, airport transfers from Accra airport (pick- up and drop-off), rent for accommodation throughout your stay, dinner throughout your stay, utility bills (electricity, water, and gas), compensation to host family, orientation transportation, tours (within the first three days of arrival to familiarize yourself with the community you serve), continual assistance and contact from members of BPDC staff, 24/7 emergency support, and a small administration cost.

Most items needed daily are available in Ghana cheaply. However, we suggest volunteers pack the following items:
  • Camera
  • Mobile phone (you can use the phone handset after changing the SIM card)
  • Bed sheets
  • Insect repellents
  • Suncream
  • Working gloves (if you are joining conservation or construction project)
  • Some books about Ghana
  • Map of Ghana
  • Toiletries
  • First aid kit
  • Flash light
  • Electricity adapter/converter
  • Sunglasses
  • Footwear (for work and travel)
  • Towel
  • Laptop

Although the program fee includes all the major expenses during your stay in Ghana, we recommend a personal budget of $50-70 per week for additional expenses as buying water, snacks, souvenirs, additional meals, events, transport, and additional weekend travel.

In your day-to-day work at BPDC, you’ll be helping the local impoverished children, their families, and the whole community. But ultimately, how much contribution and work do you want to provide to BPDC, depends on you. With BPDC you simply select the project of interest (health-screening, food bank, child support, microfinance, etc.) and then get truly hands-on with donating your time, skills, and ideas to BPDC. Those who take the most initiative, make the most out of their stay in Ghana and their experience with BPDC.

Many volunteers choose to undertake additional “side projects” while working on the “main project”. If you see something missing or not working correctly while volunteering, you can make it your mission to fix it while you’re there. It doesn’t need to be huge! Maybe it’s a leaky tap, a broken gate, or a chicken coop that needs to be built. Whatever it is, it will be your legacy after you’ve left! There are so many ways to contribute, something that seems very small to you is likely to be life-changing for the person you are helping. A small act of kindness goes a long way. It is a common courtesy to bring a small gift for the family that will be hosting you if you are allocated to one. You are not required to do so, but a simple, small gift is always well received. We suggest a box of chocolates, a t-shirt with your hometown logo, pictures of your family or postcards from your home country. You might also want to bring gifts for the people you meet during your project. For example, if you are working for an orphanage or a school it is a good idea to bring pencils, pens, and paper, art supplies like markers and paper pads as well as games. Remember that every child will need these items so you may wish to bring a large number of one item.

In the vast number of cases, the locations where our volunteers are placed either have Wi-Fi at the project site, or in the volunteer house/host family accommodation. However, volunteers are required to contribute to Wi-Fi costs, as many volunteers want to use it to upload photos and videos onto social media, which is very costly. Where there is no Internet on-site, project sites are usually close enough to a sizeable city where internet cafés can be found. The opportunity will arise at least once a week to visit one of these. It is important to remember though, that the internet service in developing countries, as with many other aspects of life, will not be as reliable as you may be used to. Even when the internet is available, it could be slow and/or intermittent. This is a factor that every volunteer will encounter at least once, and must become acclimatized to.

Volunteers are requested to bring their mobile phones with them to Ghana. BPDC can provide you with a SIM card (Micro or Nano are available) to put in your phone which you can use to stay in touch with people at home, as well as BPDC contacts in Ghana. Making international phone calls is easy – you can buy a SIM card in Takoradi or use the one provided by BPDC. BPDC will show you how to load credit onto your phone during your orientation. Volunteers can also buy a wireless internet modem for around 75GHS from a service provider to use (such as Vodafone, AirtelTigo). There is also an internet café in the suburb of Sekondi-Takoradi. Most internet cafés are open 8 am to 9 pm Monday to Saturday and are inexpensive.

For advice on vaccinations, you can refer to the Centre for Disease Control traveler’s health recommendations. The following vaccines might be recommended for travel to West Africa including Ghana. You should consult a doctor to discuss your travel plans and personal health and to determine which vaccines you will need.

  • Hepatitis A
  • Hepatitis B
  • Malaria
  • Meningitis
  • Rabies
  • Typhoid

Required Vaccinations

  • Yellow Fever – a certificate of yellow fever vaccination may be required for entry into Ghana, or for onwards travel or return to your home country.

Though volunteers can get a visa upon arrival in Accra, we strongly advise volunteers to get a tourist visa in their home country before departure. This will save you the time and hassle of filling forms on arrival.

There will be plenty of time to relax in the evenings and on weekends. We find that volunteers often spend their free time together, and tend to visit local attractions, plan excursions or weekend trips to nearby areas, or simply relax at home after a busy week of volunteering. Our local team can often help to organize weekend excursions and will have some great suggestions. These will incur additional costs, but by making these arrangements once you are in-country the costs will likely be much lower than booking in advance.

Yes, you can volunteer at any time of the year. However, teaching placements are normally based on the school calendar in Ghana. Please contact us for more information!

On completing a placement on one of our projects we will award you with a Certificate of Recognition. This is to express our deep appreciation for your service to humanity and the promotion of world peace. We can also issue reference letters to be used with university or job applications. Also, there are opportunities to become an ambassador of BPDC in your college, university, or home community. At BPDC you don’t simply pass through our projects, you become a part of our mission and help shape our future.

Wondering why our P.O.Box is different from the current BPDC address? This is because in Ghana it is very expensive to register a P.O.Box at your house/address. Therefore, to reduce costs, BPDC uses a P.O.Box registered at Habour Road Takoradi, where our P.O.Box is accessible to the BPDC members with a key. If you are wondering where you can find us, the map on our website is showing you the right place!

Most items needed daily are available in Ghana cheaply. However, we suggest volunteers pack the following items:
  • Camera
  • Mobile phone (you can use the phone handset after changing the SIM card)
  • Bed sheets
  • Insect repellents
  • Suncream
  • Working gloves (if you are joining conservation or construction project)
  • Some books about Ghana
  • Map of Ghana
  • Toiletries
  • First aid kit
  • Flash light
  • Electricity adapter/converter
  • Sunglasses
  • Footwear (for work and travel)
  • Towel
  • Laptop

Most items needed daily are available in Ghana cheaply. However, we suggest volunteers pack the following items:
  • Camera
  • Mobile phone (you can use the phone handset after changing the SIM card)
  • Bed sheets
  • Insect repellents
  • Suncream
  • Working gloves (if you are joining conservation or construction project)
  • Some books about Ghana
  • Map of Ghana
  • Toiletries
  • First aid kit
  • Flash light
  • Electricity adapter/converter
  • Sunglasses
  • Footwear (for work and travel)
  • Towel
  • Laptop