Aburi Old Girls Association (AOGA) UK, are a UK alumni group of the Aburi Girls Secondary school in Ghana. Operating under the ‘Bepow so hann’ mandate which means ‘light set on a hill’, the organisation acts as a foundation of support for former students
AOGA are linked in global partnerships (in line with the government’s initiative for schools here in the UK to link with schools across the world) to Cove Secondary School. Through this partnership, various resources for science, books, and a whole borehole sink has been donated to help alleviate the acute water shortage at Aburi.
The Association has also donated over £10, 000 for the installation of a computer suite, and other necessary renovations. The work of Aburi Old Girls Association has been recognised and we interview AOGA to find out more about their work.
Congratulations on your nomination for the Ghanaian Alumni Award! How do you feel about it?
AOGA is very pleased and honoured to be nominated for a GUBA Award
Tell us a little about your organisation and what it does
Our Alumni – Aburi Old Girls Association (AOGA), is an association made up of former students of Aburi Girls’ Secondary School living in the UK. For 25 years, we have looked out for each other, been there for each other; in short, been ‘our brother’s keeper’. We gather regularly under diverse banners to discuss issues, plan both fun and serious events that bring us and our families together and raise funds to support our alma mater in the ongoing- renovations. These activities range from quarterly meetings, celebrations, through to funerals, where we provide financial help and broad shoulders for our members to express their grief.
Why would you say your organisation deserves to win?
In our association, we consider ourselves selfless and unique in the sense that we do everything with the welfare of our members and our school at the back of our minds. We are in direct contact, not only with the mother association in Ghana, but also in regular communication with our able Headmistress, her hardworking staff and the student body at large. Our Guest Speaker for our last dinner dance was no other than our former Headmistress whose invaluable contribution during her tenure of office put the school back on its feet. We thought it befitting to invite her over to join us in celebrating a year of success.
Together with our school, we exchange ideas, discuss projects, offer suggestions and where necessary, as already hinted above, send our monetary contributions to assist with work going on. In the past, we have built an ICT suite for the school, contributed towards the renovation of teachers’ flats and are at present getting ready to remit finances towards the revamping of the school’s electricity project.
What inspires the work of your organisation?
The basic drive that spurs us on is the love of our alma mater. We all believe we could not have been better looked after during those crucial teenage years. We are what we are today, thanks to the immeasurable love and care we received while at school, and for this, we will for ever be grateful. We stand indebted, and we consider this time ‘pay-back’ time.
What are your thoughts on the GUBA Awards?
The GUBA Award is a laudable and honourable idea whose founder, Dentaa, should be highly commended for such an inspirational initiative. To set up this type of award to showcase and to celebrate the success and achievements of Ghanaians living in the UK and elsewhere, is a great recipe for more hard work and improvements in the lives of people. I can foresee GUBA growing into a ‘big thing’ and by the time it embraces other African countries it would be gone past just winning a most deserving CSR world leader plague.
Are you involved in any other projects?
AOGA is involved in various projects including Global Partnerships – an initiative of the British government to culturally, academically and socially link together schools, communities, churches, non-governmental organisations across the world. Our school is a partner of one such link with a school here in the UK and cross-curricular activities across the continents is in the fore-front. Several cultural exchange visits have already taken place over the years. The teachers share pedagogical ideas and our most generous link school has regularly showered us with academic equipment, valuable books, laptops, to mention a few. Aburi on the other hand, has shared the rich Ghanaian heritage with our visitors. The students on both sides have benefited the most.
In addition, AOGA through our connections, have linked with Crown Court Church of Scotland in London where we often join the congregation in worship. Through this friendship, members of Crown Court have taken it upon themselves to sponsor needy and deserving students at our alma mater, paying their school fees thereby providing them with the wherewithal to be able to achieve their goals and fulfil their aims and aspirations in life. We on our part, ensure the smooth running of this programme.
In conclusion, the first line of our school song says: “Our school is built on a hill. ‘Bepow so hann’ (Twi phrase meaning ‘light set on a hill’) is our motto”. We at AOGA intend to be a light on the hill to point future generations of our alma mater in the right direction.
Aburi Old Girls Association UK has been nominated for the Ghanaian Alumni Award. To cast your vote, visit http://www.gubaawards.co.uk/voting/alumni/