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ABORSCO, German School Begin Exchange Programme

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Aborsco German School Begin Exchange Programme
Aborsco German School Begin Exchange Programme

The Abor Senior High Technical School (ABORSCO) in the Keta Municipality of the Volta Region has begun an exchange progamme with a Technical and Vocational School in Germany, aimed at not only sharing more practical experiences in carpentry but also exploring other opportunities to support each other particularly the carpentry department of ABORSCO which is severely under-resourced.

The exchange programme has been made possible by the Rising Lions, Ghana, an educational Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) based at Tegbi in the Anloga District of the Volta Region in collaboration with the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany in Ghana as well as the German Chamber of Commerce.

The Five Aborsco Beneficiary Students
The Five Aborsco Beneficiary Students

This follows the emergence of ABORSCO as winners amongst five (5) sister second cycle schools in the area in the first-ever Inter-Schools Carpentry Competition organized in October 2023 at Keta as part of activities to mark the German Days celebrations in Ghana. ABORSCO, though acutely under-resourced in its carpentry department with tools and equipment, managed to beat Keta Senior High Technical School (KETASCO), Atiavi Senior High Technical School (ATIASEC), Anlo Technical Institute (ANTECH) at Anloga as well as the Kedzi Vocational Technical School (KEVOTECH).

According to the Director of the Rising Lions, Ghana, Mr. Peter Attipoe, part of the package to the winning school as an organization is what has led to the establishment of the exchange programme between ABORSCO and Staatliche Berufsschule, Miltenberg-Obernburg, Germany (a Vocational School in Miltenberg-Obernburg, Germany).

The German Students Their Teachers Leaders
The German Students Their Teachers Leaders

As part of the exchange programme, five (5) students from the Staatliche Berufsschule under the joint leadership of their female carpentry teacher, Ms. Katrin Kempf, and a Representative of the Rising Lion, Germany, Ms. Angelica Bick, have been at ABORSCO for the past ten (10) days not only to interact with their Ghanaian carpentry students at ABORSCO but also appreciate the Ghanaian way of using tools, equipment, and materials in executing carpentry works including simple projects. The German students included four (4) males, Eliano Lavanco, Felix Tutzer, Felix Ketter, and Laurin Hofmann as well as Malin Hauck, the only female student.

Five (5) students from ABORSCO in addition to one (1) teacher from the carpentry department are equally leaving for Germany on Wednesday, 3rd July 2024 for ten (10) days to interact with their counterparts in Miltenberg-Obernburg, Germany.

A Section Of The Students Of Aborsco
A Section Of The Students Of Aborsco

According to Mr. Attipoe, the Ghanaian team would be exposed to modern ways of carpentry skills and practical sessions, especially in the use of power tools, machines, and equipment in the carpentry space.

This huge knowledge and experience, he said would be brought back to the Ghanaian community for enhancement, particularly in the field of carpentry studies in the school and beyond.

The all-male beneficiary ABORSCO students are Emmanuel Kporsu, Charles Klu, Paul Etsey Avevor, Peter Atsu Avevor as well as Felix Dzidzor Akabutu.

Speaking at a school durbar to mark the end of the ten (10) day educational tour of the German delegation to ABORSCO, Director of the Rising Lions, Ghana, Mr. Peter Attipoe regretted that as a nation and people, carpentry studies are not given much attention by the state and educational authorities.

According to him, because of the continuous misconceptions associated with the study of the subject over the years amongst parents and students, is making it very difficult for students and many people to choose carpentry as a profession. Mr Attipoe indicated that his organization would continue to push for a paradigm shift in the narrative by focusing on empowering carpenters.

The Foldable Cabinet Cum Table Project Undertaken By Both The German Ghanaian Students
The Foldable Cabinet Cum Table Project Undertaken By Both The German Ghanaian Students

He emphasized that this exchange programme should become a wake-up call for all Ghanaians and policymakers, saying that these ABORSCO students to be allowed to explore the modern advent of technology, especially in the field of carpentry including exploring the use of machines and power tools unlike in Ghana where the hammer and nail are very common, should be enough to begin to change the old narrative.

The Headmaster of ABORSCO, Mr. Felix Joseph Darkey described the Director of the Rising Lions, Ghana, Mr. Peter Attipoe as a man of integrity who believes purely in merit. ‘Anybody could have manipulated the results to benefit his school especially when it involves foreign travels but he did not do that’, the Headmaster noted.

Mr. Darkey commended the German students as well as their leaders/teachers not only for accepting the Ghanaian culture including the local foods but also freely and comfortably interacting with their Ghanaian students and counterparts despite the school’s infrastructural challenges.

Director Of Rising Lions Ghana Mr Peter Attipoe
Director Of Rising Lions Ghana Mr Peter Attipoe

He expressed the hope or optimism that the collaboration between ABORSCO in Ghana and Staatliche Berufsschule in Germany would bring tremendous development to ABORSCO in the area of tools acquisition, textbooks provision as well as infrastructural development amongst others.

The Headmaster admonished the five (5) beneficiary students to be disciplined and focused while in Germany for their part of the exchange programme. He asked them not to think of running away anywhere, reminding them that their conduct, actions, and inaction would have serious implications on the established relationship between the two (2) schools and countries. ‘Don’t do anything that would jeopardize your future. Exercise patience. You can go back to Germany at the right time, Mr Darkey emphasized.

The German Carpentry Female Teacher who accompanied the students to Ghana, Ms. Katrin Kempf described their visit as revealing, explaining that both schools and countries have a lot to share with and learn from each other. She lauded the Ghanaian students and carpenters in Ghana for using their hands for the labor part associated with carpentry works and projects.

The Representative of Rising Lions, Germany, Ms. Angelica Bick stressed the need for girls in schools to venture into male-dominated professions like carpentry and electricals, urging the boys to do the same by engaging in sewing, cooking, and nursing professions that are also largely female-biased. In the opinion of Ms. Bick, there is nothing like typical male or female professions, because the female population of many countries around the world is fifty (50) percent or more.

A spokesperson for the visiting German students, Eliano Lavanco, and for the Ghanaian delegation, Emmanuel Kporsu told our newsteam in separate interviews that there is a lot to share and learn from one another.

Both the German and Ghanaian students, later outdoored a multi-purpose wardrobe or cabinet project to the admiration of the entire gathering. The project, which was executed with simple carpentry tools like hammer and hand-saw amongst others, can be foldable into a table for writing. It also has drawers at the base for storing petty items at the carpentry shop or department.

The Headmaster Of Aborsco Mr Joseph Darkey Middle With His Two Assistants
The Headmaster Of Aborsco Mr Joseph Darkey Middle With His Two Assistants

All the visiting German students and their two (2) leaders/teachers were also decorated with Kente stoles designed in the colours and logos of ABORSCO in appreciation of their visit to the school and Ghana.

The German delegation also handed over to the school, a German local game for use by the students during break periods.

The ceremony was well attended by both staff and students. The school cultural troupe also provided entertainment in the area of ‘Borborbor’ and other dance performances.

The German team has since left Ghana for Germany.

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