Andrew Chinoumese is an immigrant from Ghana who left his job as a lawyer in New York City to take a position in a village in Western Ghana. He taught himself English, which he needed in order to work as a teacher, and when he arrived in 2001, he found a job teaching math at the local primary school.
Chinoumese soon found a good job working in a small vineyard on the other side of the town, but he wanted a bigger career opportunity in agriculture. So he tried learning English again. This time, he got a job on the English side of the vineyard — a job that took him to a different side of the town where the bread came from. He was now commuting every day from the vineyard to work in the sugar mills.
In 2005, he was able to secure a teaching position at the local primary school. He then planned to run the sugar mill for the next few years. But, he said, he missed the vibrant, strong community he had left behind. He found that he was better at creating the best school in the village. He noticed that his students were usually uncomfortable with speaking to strangers and so much of his teaching was centered around language and literacy.
In 2018, Chinoumese’s original vision for making it a model school became reality. He created a program in which the children receive an education in English, based on a philosophy of cultural and oral learning as well as print and media arts, his background. He added another dimension with the focus on providing those children with an abundance of nutritious food.
He even married a local woman, so that the village school will have the most multicultural children possible.
In order to expand his vision of an educational system that would transform the lives of the children of Ghana, Chinoumese decided to start his own non-profit. Last December, his organization, Sherito, was established with the hope of promoting effective education in rural Ghana.
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