Alpha Beta began in 1988 with six children at a Montessori school, then successes in future grades eventually led to the college building in 2004, according to its website. The school aims to expose students to an enriched teaching and learning environment, and “to raise leaders of tomorrow who shall be part of the solution” to Ghana’s developmental challenges.
Now, she teaches Form 1 and Form 2 at the school, equivalent to seventh and eighth grades in the U.S.
“There’s a connection between people here that I have never felt anywhere else in the world,” Hohman recently wrote on her blog, madezumasrevenge.wordpress.com. “You can sense an old, remembered and revered way of life even in the busiest of streets and the most modern Internet cafes.”
After her first trip to Ghana, she helped found Eye to Eye Foundation, a U.S. branch of Orphans of Ghana, a non-profit aiming to help children break the poverty cycle and realize their full potential. Hohman became one of three Americans to serve on the Orphans of Ghana Board of Trustees, working to improve living conditions through projects like digging a new water well at the Royal Seed Shelter. The organization is currently working to provide orphans with hepatitis B vaccines.
“There was a tight group of five or six of us (teachers) who, after returning home, decided to do something about the conditions we saw for the children we had come to love. From this passion, Orphans of Ghana was formed in the UK,” Hohman said.
Now, in addition to her teaching duties, she also works with the Eye to Eye Foundation.
“In the orphanage, Eye to Eye seeks to give the kids freedom and hope in their future, to be leaders, philanthropists, politicians, bakers, doctors, mothers and artists,” Hohman said.
Eye to Eye’s current project is the Classroom Cooperative, a network of classrooms partnering together to share resources. Classrooms are divided into two groups: Root Members and Leaf Members. Root Members make a monthly contribution of $2 a child to help the Leaf Members, like the students at Royal Seed Shelter. Members are partnered based on student ages and abilities.
“They can, with the help of the Eye to Eye Foundation, interact and communicate with their partner classroom by sharing anything from a fun science experiment that they did this week to a new dance performance that they learned this semester that they want to teach their partner classroom,” Hohman said.
Hohman wrote about a recent visit to Royal Seed Shelter on her blog, explaining the importance of the Classroom Cooperative and the strong bond she has developed with the local children.
“As the sun came up yesterday morning, I was able to witness the overwhelming influx of children into the orphanage from the community. It was both joyful and horrifying — uplifting to see children walking into school ready and excited to learn, and saddening to see the conditions in which they are asked to do so,” she wrote on Oct. 20.
Because Hohman is conducting her work with the Eye to Eye Foundation while teaching fulltime, she admits that her days are often full. Still, she is committed to helping the children and described her life as “wonderfully worn-out” in a Sept. 17 blog post.
“There are always struggles when living away from the comforts that you are used to, but in every situation thus far I have been able to look back and see how truly beautiful it has been — how God has kept me and guided me in it all,” she said.
For more information on the program, or to make donations, contact Madison Hohman at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the Eye to Eye Foundation on Facebook, www.facebook.com/eyetoeyefoundation.
Contact Rachel Parsons at email@example.com.