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Jonatan Freund
Community engagement


Empowerment for Life (E4L) Program
    - Equity and Sustainable Development for All


Civil society actors contribute to increased equity and sustainable development in Ghana.


The E4L program has three overall interlinked thematic areas: Governance, Education and Inclusive Growth and Employment.



The main elements of the governance intervention are citizen-led monitoring of capital development projects in the districts; civil society engagement in district revenue generation, utilization and provision of public services; bringing evidence of corruption to the national level and engaging youth in governance through e.g. citizen journalism.

The main elements of the education intervention are strengthening of school governance bodies and national civil society collaboration to pursue fair and transparent allocation of education resources as well as effective use. Other elements are testing and adoption of methodologies for improved learning outcomes and the creation of better opportunities for girls and young women through e.g. literacy, numeracy and life skills classes.

Inclusive growth and Employment:
The main elements of the Inclusive Growth and Employment intervention are strengthening of livelihood strategies and climate change adaptation among smallholder farmers; supporting well-organized farmer organizations to venture into larger-scale commercial farming and women groups to start agri-businesses; and creating a supportive environment for young rural entrepreneurs. In general the thematic areas have specific focus on women and youth and their development challenges.


Geographic location:
Five districts in Ghana’s Northern Region: Mion, Kumbungu, Saboba, Karaga and Savelugu-Nanton.


Ghana graduated to become a lower middle-income country in 2010 after a rebasing of its GDP. The graduation to lower middle-income country implies that the size of the Ghanaian economy has grown, but at the same time it is a complex and in many ways painful process. Ghana’s graduation has been followed by lower economic growth and persistent fiscal deficits. A study concludes that public financial management is a key challenge for Ghana, which has led to persistent deficits and underfunding of the social sectors and agriculture. This obviously has serious consequences for the poorest and most marginalized citizens, who might be worse off than before. To make matters worse Ghana is still lagging behind comparable countries in terms of domestic revenue mobilization, which is making it even more difficult to finance development needs.It is therefore a major concern whether Ghana will in fact be able to finance the fulfillment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).The transition to lower middle-income status is closely linked to the concept of a ‘Ghana Beyond Aid’. Beyond Aid’ Initiative has four main priority areas:

1) industrialization, 2) agriculture, 3) corruption and 4) education.



Program objective:

Civil society actors contribute to increased equity and sustainable development in Ghana:

  • Civil society engagement improves government transparency, accountability and performance.

  • Civil Society Organizations contribute to improved distribution and use of resources in education.

  • Rural communities are climate adaptive and have improved livelihoods and resilience.


Leave No Girl Behind

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Girls have equal rights to education. 

Empowerment for Life Documentary

Watch how we try to strenghten local CBOs to become strong and vibrant organisations who promote change in Northern Ghana.

Making a difference through girl-child education

To promote girls’ education, there is the need for a collective effort and support from parents, community leaders and teachers towards creating an enabling environment for girls to feel confidant and develop an interest in education.

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