Jamie Greene was selected to receive the 2011 Faculty Award for Excellence in Community-Based Scholarship from The Ohio State University for his role in developing and leading the Ghana Sustainable Change Program.
Ghana Sustainable Change Program is a collaborative effort between OSU students and faculty, the Columbus Ghanaian community, and the people of the rural Offinso North District in the Ashanti region of Ghana to build capacity for growth and development.
Students enrolled in Mr. Greene’s international planning studio this past winter worked with Ghanaian community members—via email, Skype, telephone and a four-day workshop held in Oct 2010—to develop tangible solutions to key community’s challenges, including nine specific projects:
- water quality assessment;
- bicycle ambulance for access to health care;
- health system efficiency;
- sanitation improvement at a local school;
- creating the first community library;
- community participation plan and training;
- agriculture soil and irrigation testing;
- agriculture supply chain improvement, including improving women’s access to agricultural markets; and
construction of a biogas digester.
At the end of March, Mr. Greene and co-leader Dr. Charisma Acey traveled with eighteen undergraduate and graduate students to the Offinso North District to engage the community in the implementation these projects and programs. There, the OSU team was joined by community members and town and rural planning students from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in Kumasi to initiate the projects.
The Ghanaian locals and students will carry out work on the nine initial projects on the ground; additional opportunities to collaborate throughout the next year are currently being planned.