In 2011, Susan, Michael and Mohammed joined the Reach for Change Incubator in Ghana. These are their thoughts on what the program has meant to them and their organizations.
“I’d be a social worker, not a social entrepreneur”
Discharged juvenile offenders in Ghana have a difficult time reintegrating into society which increases the risk of reoffending. Susan Saaba runs Crrecent, offering a reintegration program targeting juveniles during and after their time in correctional centers:
Without Reach for Change, I would still be doing social work. Instead I now run a sustainable social enterprise creating long-lasting change. By targeting not only the juveniles but also prison staff and policy makers, we impact the whole system of juvenile justice delivery. I could never have done this as a social worker.
"The stamp of approval was key"
School environments in Ghana can be hazardous: unsafe playgrounds, hanging electrical wires, open culverts and poor road safety. Michael Baabu runs Safe- Child, advocating safety and certifying safe schools:
“If it weren’t for Reach for Change, we would not have gained that much influence as an expert in such a short while. Thanks to the stamp of approval, our recognition as a leading authority has soared and we are impacting many children, as more schools look up to us for their safe school membership.”
“I could have been one of the children I am helping”
Children in deprived communities in Ghana lack organized forums for afterschool activities, exposing them to an increased risk of drug-abuse and crime. Mohammed Salis Tahir runs DUNK, offering basketball practice incorporated with life skills training:
“If it weren’t for Reach for Change I would probably be a ‘café guy’, which is what we call those who con people in internet cafés. The Incubator was like an informal university degree for me. Instead of committing crime I am now creating a better Ghana for children.”