About

History

Founder and Executive Director Nana Kwesi Ohene conceived the idea for a combined academic and football programme in 2013, during his time as an MBA (Marketing) candidate at the University of Ghana Business School. A lifelong football fan and experienced coach, Mr. Ohene committed much of his down time as a graduate student to coaching, managing, and organizing a variety of football initiatives at the University's Ajax Park. During training sessions, Mr. Ohene began to develop relationships with the many children who would come to watch. Eventually, the children were permitted to train with the Girl's International Student football team. Over time, it became clear that these kids had a strong desire to play and came from communities where resources and opportunities were lacking (such as Okpongolo, Shiashie, Bawlashie and Madina). Many of these children come from homes that relied on their contribution to family income and in which they were the first to receive a basic education.

After identifying a series of needs, in addition to a safe and fun space to play, Mr. Ohene and a group of dedicated supporters began to conceptualize what would, in 2015, become the Play & Learn Foundation. In its earliest stages, informal activities were held and covered a diverse range of lessons, from homework help to creative writing, time management to tolerance. Activities and lessons have since been formalized in order to maximize the benefits to the youth through more structured programming. Academic sessions focus on literacy and comprehension, while football training includes the nurturing of soft skills such as teamwork and discipline. Mentorship sessions focus on topics such as problem solving and goal setting, while community outreach activities teach tolerance and respect.

5 Years of Impact and Changing the Odds

After five years of establishing the Play and Learn Foundation (PAL), PAL has undertaken projects, collaborated with other similar organizations, partnered and supported activities that align with the organization's aims and objectives. Our programs focus on educational support, football for soft skill development, community outreach and projects and programs to develop both the hard and soft skills our youth need to become leaders in their communities.

Education

  • COMMUNITY TUTORING
    • Over 250 children have benefited from our one on one community tutoring sessions 

 

  • READING, STORYTELLING, AND CREATIVE WRITING CLINICS
    • PAL has held 5 of such initiatives in Ada, Shukura, Okponglo and La Bawaleshie which reached and impacted over 300 children.

 

  • BOOKS DONATIONS
    • We have donated 100 books to the La Bawaleshie Basic School.

 

  • SCHOLARSHIP AND FINANCIAL SUPPORT
    • There are currently 5 children under full support
    • Over 200 children have received specific donations related to school finance.

Football

  • FOOTBALL ACADEMY
    • Over 300 children from Okponglo, Madina, Shiashie, Dzorwulu and La Bawaleshie have gone through the football academy for soft skills and character development.

 

  • CLEAT AND FOOTBALL DONATIONS
    • Donated 50 cleats and 5 footballs to the children that live in the Kewunor community, Ada.

Community Outreach

  • COVID-19 RELIEF INITIATIVE
    • Over 5000$ raised to provide financial relief to families impacted by the pandemic
    • 61 families received 500gh cedis (85USD$) for food and necessities during lockdown 

 

  • HEALTH CARE
    • General health and eye  screening for over 400 kids in December 2018
    • Annual mental health awareness march reaches hundred in Legon 
    • Mental health talk had over 100 students from the University of Ghana participate
    • Over 200 children and adults benefited from the national health insurance registration and renewal project in September 2019

 

  • MERRY KIDSMAS PARTY 
    • Over 600 children have benefited from this project in the last two years. They have benefited from general health screening, Christmas gifts, food items and wonderful memories.

 

Girl Empowerment

  • Formation of the PAL all girls football team consisting of 25 girls.

  • Formation of an all Girls Dance Academy.

  • “Yes, She can Walk” - an event focused on Girl Power had 250 participants.

  • Yaa Asantewaa Girl Empowerment Project which consists of 15 girls who are being mentored for 6 months.

  • PAL Big Sister Program where 15 Girls from the University of Ghana mentor 15 younger girls from Okpongolo community.

Global Reach 

  • VOLUNTEER
    • Over 450 volunteers from 2015 to date
    • 100 ambassadors present in Sweden, Funland, USA, England, Canada, and Norway

 

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