04/02/2023 Travel Report 9, Ghana Trip
Under the impression of the hospitals and health centers we had seen in the past days, today we first visited the "Skills Lab" of the Department of Nursing and Midwifery. This is the training area for gaining practical skills before students take on roles in healthcare facilities. We were astonished. The equipment surpasses much of what we have seen in hospitals. There is an area for obstetrics, an area for prenatal care and also an area for general medical care. Each training area is equipped with beds or simple lounger, demonstrators and medical equipment. In addition to incubators and scales, there are also two ultrasound machines that look like new. However, these are not in use because they are to be distributed to surrounding hospitals, if necessary, to alleviate some of the shortage of medical technology. Unfortunately, the area does not provide enough space for full study cohorts. The approximately 100 students in a class have to divide into 4 groups of 25 in order to participate in the practical part of the training. Here we also see the low-quality beds from Chinese production again, as we know them from yesterday's training on the 1Bed4All(II) project. The dolls lying in these beds seem partly improvised. For example, due to a lack of female dolls in the area for birth preparation, a male doll is in use, which was unceremoniously covered the mustache. We were accompanied by Richard Quaque, the president of the student council, who today showed us around the campus of the Catholic University of Ghana (CUG). We took the opportunity to say goodbye to the university's computer specialists in one of the IT labs and hand over computer accessories and multifunctional tools. Donated equipment that will certainly be put to good use to keep the IT infrastructure running. A few hundred meters from the main CUG campus, there are several student dormitories. Just as the number of students has grown in recent years, so has the need for affordable housing during college. On the way there, we pass the building that is supposed to become the cafeteria. The room layout - kitchen, dining rooms and toilets - is easily recognizable. However, the building is still under construction. Both large rooms are also packed with chairs to allow the space to be used for lectures.
The university dormitory consists of 5 buildings and accommodates about 650 young students of the CUG. Besides floors with small one-room apartments, there are rooms with several beds and shared bathrooms. Each area has a communal kitchen. However, this is hardly used, as cooking usually takes place on the small balcony that belongs to each room. Michael and Felix invite us to their room. A tidy room awaits us, shared by the two students. A narrow work table is part of the basic equipment, as well as two ceiling-high built-in cupboards. Next to a kettle, the large number of sports shoes is striking, neatly sorted and presented. It turns out that both young men are avid athletes. Felix is also captain of the CUG volleyball team, as he reveals to us in the interview. You can find this and many more videos on our YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1zWW3JrtH5z93YMK3CybSw.
At the end of our tour, Raphael Quaque, president of the student council of the CUG, shows us his small apartment. We are very amazed. The entire workspace is filled with laptops and cell phones taken apart. Raphael reveals to us that he was already a teacher in Berekum before coming to the CUG campus as a student. In addition, he repairs computers and shares his knowledge both privately and at school, to which he plans to return after graduation. He is currently on leave of absence to complete his studies. It's especially hard to get certain spare parts needed to repair laptops, Raphael explains. It sometimes takes weeks or months to find a contact that has a suitable brightness sensor, for example. The tinkerer offers to support HITA e.V. in the future. We are sure that we can build a reliable partner with him. You can also find the interview with Raphael soon on the HITA YouTube channel.