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Ghana’s vibrant atmosphere and friendly people have made it one of the most popular and accessible destinations in West Africa. During your Global Prep program, you’ll learn about Ghanaian traditions and modern context while exploring the capital city of Accra. You will have the unique experience of staying with a host family in Accra, where you will learn all about the history and culture of the region, as well as how the locals live. By participating in excursions to large cities like Cape Coast and Kumasi, you can gain a deep understanding of the region’s history and politics. Plus, Ghana’s official language is English, which means you can jump right into your three-week cultural adventure from day one! By staying with a local host family, you’ll be immersed in Ghanaian daily life and culture in no time. 

On this program you are likely to learn about these Sustainable Development Goals:

Eligibility

Graduates Eligible? Yes, high school graduates are eligible to participate.
Minimum GPA 2.0
Age Range 15yrs, 0 months to
18yrs, 0 months at start of program
Language Skills No language requirement

Based on differences in culture, strict government regulation of medications, and other local customs, it has been our experience that not all of our international AFS partners are able to support students with certain diagnoses, including but not limited to, severe allergies, strict dietary restrictions, ADD/ADHD, and those currently taking or who have taken psychotropic medications and/or received counseling for mental/psychological issues within the past year. If this applies to you, please get in touch with an AFS Study Abroad Specialist early so that we can determine the right experience for you.

Sample Program Itinerary to Ghana

The below itinerary serves as an outline for the program, and each Global Prep experience will vary based on group size and opportunity.

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I. Arrival in Ghana and Accra City Tour

In the months before your departure, AFSers have the opportunity to participate in various preparatory activities, including an online Student Learning Journey, which is an interactive course that brings AFSers from around the world together to learn how to develop essential global skills, intercultural communication techniques, and practice social impact, maximizing the outcomes of the AFS learning experience.  

AFS-USA will coordinate and share your international travel with you. You will need to coordinate your own travel to the point of international departure. From there, your journey in Ghana will begin when you land, where you’ll be met by staff, volunteers and meet your fellow AFSers from around the world. Shortly after arrival, you will attend an arrival orientation and get a crash course on Ghanaian culture, living with a host family, safety, and support structures. 

ACCRA,GHANA/MAY 1,2018: The skyview of the city

After meeting your host families and settling in, you will have some free time to spend with them before taking a tour of the century-old capital city of Accra! You’ll visit a wide array of sites on your tour, such as the W. E. B. DuBois Centre for Pan African Culture and The African Diaspora Forum, the intriguing crafts men at Nungua/Teshie, the Independence (Black Star) Square and Gate, Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park, and the Arts and Craft Centre. You’ll also go on a drive through the colonial section of the city and view the Ussher and James Fort as well as Oxford Street in Osu, noted for its bustling shops and restaurants where you can try some street food! 

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II. Kakum National Park, Cape Coast Castle, and Elmina Castle

During your trip to Cape Coast, you’ll visit the Kakum National Park and stop over at the International Stingless Bee Centre, founded by Professor Peter Kwapong, to learn about stingless bees that produce highly medicinal honey, propolis and other products in the most complex architectural environment. This trip will also include a tour of the Cape Coast Castle, which houses the West African Historical Museum and where you will learn the history of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade. Other site visits in Accra include the Elmina Castle, the oldest European monument in Ghana built in 1482 by the Portuguese. First established as a trade settlement, the castle later became one of the most important stops on the route of the Atlantic Slave Trade. During this time you will also walk around the colorful fishing harbor next to the castle to see the fish market and traditional dugout canoes the local people use for their livelihoods.

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III. Cocoa Processing Company Limited, Legion Botanical Gardens, and beach day trip to Kokrobite

A visit to the Cocoa Processing Company (CPC) in Tema is sure to be fascinating as you learn on site the history of the company and the various processes cocoa beans go through in its refining. During this time you’ll also have an opportunity to visit the Legon Botanical Gardens for a rope course and painting activity. You’ll also enjoy a relaxing beach day with AFS Ghana Volunteers in the coastal town of Kokrobite 

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IV: Tafi Atome Monkey Sanctuary and Wli Waterfalls

Departing early from Accra, you’ll get to experience the Tafi Atome Monkey Sanctuary in the Volta Region, where the local community works to protect the forests and monkeys and offer tours to visitors from around the world. Exploring the nearby Wli Waterfalls is sure to be exciting as you participate in a trail walk to see the wildlife and the highest waterfall in West Africa! 

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V. Volunteering with Community Project Organization

For a portion of your experience in Ghana, you will have an opportunity to work with organizations seeking to make a positive change in the world in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). From admin to field duties, you will have multiple offerings to choose from where you’ll learn how to contribute to society as global citizens.  

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VI. Ghanaian Craftswomen and Cultural Enrichment

Immersing yourself in the culture of Ghana is a key component of your study abroad experience, and you’ll have many opportunities to do so during a variety of cultural enrichment activities! Outside of spending quality time with your host family, you’ll spend time with a Ghanaian chef who will take you through preparing some of Ghana’s most famous dishes, as well as a Ghanaian traditional drumming and dancing instructor who will teach you some traditional beats and dance moves. With your fellow students, you’ll also participate in fun cultural activities such as spending the day with a group of Ghanaian craftswomen to learn about their daily experiences and try your hands at crafting tie dyes and batiks, as well as beadmaking! 

Bright African Fabrics in Artisan’s Workshop

VII. Kumasi

Moving through the forest belt of Ghana to Nkwakaw and up the Kwahu Mountain range to the village of Aduamoah located in the Eastern Region, you’ll have the unique opportunity to interact with the chief, his elders, and the people of the village. Here you will take part in an Akan traditional naming ceremony, where you will be given an Akan name. In Kamasi, you will visit the Royal Manhyia Palace Museum, the Cultural Centre that features the Prempeh II Jubilee Museum, and a tour of the Ashanti craft villages to observe craftsmen at work and to purchase souvenirs. You will also take a trip to the rebuilt biggest open market in West Africa, Kejetia. In this market, you will find everything from beads, cosmetics, clothes, shoes, food stuff, and African fabrics! 

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Your Accommodations

You and your group will spend most of your time with a host family. This unique experience offers the chance to enjoy Ghanaian life up-close and share stories with your host parents and siblings. During your stay, you’ll likely get to taste homemade foods like red-red, a popular dish that is made with beans, shrimp, or prawns, red palm oil, and tomatoes. Ghana is also famous for its delicious street foods, so you may get to purchase some spicy snacks like fried plantains from a local vendor. 

Scholarships and Aid

We believe that studying abroad should not be contingent on personal finances. When you apply, we work with you to understand your family’s needs and match you with available scholarships and aid. 100% of accepted applicants with demonstrated need receive funds.

Learn More

Participant Reflections

What's Included

  • Round trip international airfare chaperoned by an American staff member
  • Accommodations, meals, and transportation
  • International secondary medical travel coverage
  • Access to a 24/7 Emergency Duty Officer
  • Visa Support
  • Please review the Terms and Conditions for complete guidelines.
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Returning Home

“Life-changing” is hard to describe, yet it’s nearly always the first thing that AFSers say when asked about their experience abroad. “Transformed” is another one.
When you return home, if you’re like most AFSers, you’ll bring with you a sense of accomplishment unlike any other. You’ll have gained maturity and independence, discovered new passions, and developed the confidence and resilience to accomplish anything you set out to do.
That transformation isn’t only visible to you, though – others see it as well. AFSers gain critical skills for college and careers. Second language fluency, intercultural competence, creativity, and critical reasoning will help you succeed, whatever path you take. “Life-changing” means it’s only the beginning.
It’s not just an adventure abroad; it’s a whole new reality. The perspectives and personal connections you gained will stay with you and likely draw you back to the second home you found in Ghana.

In fact, our alumni reviews have made AFS one of the top-rated organizations in the study abroad industry.