Q: What is ABCDE? What does ABCDE do?
A:The African Business Center for Developing Education (ABCDE) is a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) working in partnership with industry, academia, and governments in order to provide effective strategies to bridge the gap between the expectations of industry and the reality of education in Africa. ABCDE focuses on “Bringing Corporate Knowledge & Experience into Classrooms. Imbued with practical knowledge and ready to give something back, industrial executives, (typically alumni of various schools and colleges) are given the opportunity, through ABCDE’s programmes, to bring their company’s core assets—such as innovation, technology, product design, financing, corporate knowledge and experience to support education in Africa.
Q: Where does ABCDE work?
A: ABCDE currently works in Ghana. However, plans are underway to extend our operations initially to three other African countries, namely: Nigeria, South Africa, and Tanzania. Wherever ABCDE works, programmes will always be created in collaboration with governments and local educational development organizations.
Q: Who can be a mentor?
A: To be a mentor, you must:
- Be a corporate leader or a successful professional in any field who has something to give-back to students, and can be a role model to help in the development of their professional and employability skills
- Pass a mandatory screening test that includes: a background check, as well as verification of references and work history
- Commit to spending 4-to-6 hours each three months with students
- Attend an initial training session.
Mentors should be:
- Interested and willing listeners
- Encouraging and supportive
- Patient and flexible
- Tolerant and respectful of students needs and of individual differences
As a mentor, you will:
- Support a young person through an ongoing mentoring relationship
- Serve as a positive role model, career coach and counselor/guide
- Plan and participate in activities with students
- Build self-esteem and motivation in a young person
- Help your mentee set goals and work toward accomplishing them
- Be making a difference and contribution to society
- Gain personal fulfillment and self-discovery
Q. What types of mentoring programmes are available?
A. Group Mentoring is compulsory for all Mentors, whilst follow-up e-mentoring- is optional. One-to-one mentoring is also optional dependent on whether the targeted students have already participated in the group mentoring sessions.
Q: Who started ABCDE and Why?
A: The idea for the establishment of ABCDE was mooted by Dr Ekwow Spio Garbrah, a former Minister of Education, Minister of Communications and current Minister of Trade and Industry of the Republic of Ghana. As the Minister of Education, Ekwow realized that employability skills were essential in the global job market. He noted, however, that the current curricula and course content of most African secondary and tertiary level institutions did not reflect adequately what students really needed to be readily employed and to be effective in the world of work. As the then Minister of Education, he worked actively to support programmes and activities that contributed significantly to helping to bridge the gap between the expectations of industry and the reality of education. From 2008 onwards, Ekwow through his own private initiative – began to work towards organizing working and retired professionals to get back into secondary and tertiary institutions for brief but significant interactions with students, in order to significantly contribute to increasing students’ employability skills for the job-market.
Q: How are ABCDE and its programs funded?
A: ABCDE relies on funding from donors, foundations, governments, corporations, businesses and membership contributions who entrust us with funds and resources to enable ABCDE to fulfill its mission to help improve education and to make it more relevant to the job-market.ABCDE aims at ensuring that at least 89% of all donations it receives go directly into operational and programmes work.
Q: How can I be assured that my donation is directly helping students to develop their professional skills?
A: ABCDE is committed to spending donations where they are specifically designated. Once a donor indicates where the donation must be targeted we commit to targeting the funds precisely towards the appropriate programme and ensure that the funds are spent in the most productive and effective way.
Q: Can I choose a specific program to support?
A: At least 90% of all funds received go towards the support of ABCDE’s programmes. If a donor wishes to designate its donation to a specific programme, ABCDE honors that wish. ABCDE will not receive funds for a programme with the intention of directing it for other purposes.
Q: Is my contribution tax-deductible?
A: Yes. ABCDE is approved by the Internal Revenue Service as a tax-exempt organization, and all donations are tax deductible to the extent provided by law.
Q: Will I receive a receipt for my donation?
A: Yes, you will receive a charitable tax receipt for income tax purposes.
Q: Does ABCDE accept other forms of donations?
A: Yes. For non-monetary gifts, please contact the CEO/Executive Director, to discuss your options.
Q: Does ABCDE sell, rent or trade donor information to other agencies?
A: No. ABCDE values all our partners and donors support and is committed to protecting privacy. ABCDE will therefore not surrender or sell any information for commercial use or for any purpose that is not directly linked to our programmes or activities.
Q: Can I intern or volunteer for ABCDE?
A: ABCDE welcomes and encourages volunteers and interns to join the organization. Volunteers and interns assist with a wide range of administrative, research, and programme tasks as well as assisting on special events. Currently, we are looking for volunteers to support ABCDE’s work at our Ghana headquarters in Accra. If you are interested in becoming an intern or volunteer, please kindly contact us for further information and what to do.