Odyssey has a sister school in Ghana, located in the village of Kpaachi Yili. The partnership started several years ago when an Odyssey family became involved with the WATERisLIFE organization, a nonprofit committed to bringing clean water solutions, as well as sanitation and hygiene education to those in need around the world. Odyssey is an International Baccalaureate World School, holding the belief that we belong to a global community. Global-wide compassion, understanding, as well as job market competition will be just a few of the considerations on the horizon of our scholars. It was with great enthusiasm that Odyssey partnered with such an important organization bringing a very basic resource to those in need. It allowed us to connect on a global level but to also work at a local level in our own community with the skills and knowledge that we obtain in the process.
Mrs. Milakovich, (you may remember her by Miss Lusin) was the first Odyssey staff member to visit Ghana and our sister school in Kpaachi Yili. The work she accomplished there changed her life, eventually steering her career path to water conservation. After every visit to Ghana, she returned to our school committed to teach the importance of hygiene and share a small view into a world that our scholars can only imagine. Mrs. Snyder became the new WATERisLIFE club sponsor for Odyssey. She has a history of volunteering and service, mixed with a background in science and teaching. She gladly took the torch of being the leader compassionately connecting our scholars to the children in Ghana and educating hygiene in the classroom. My name is Stephanie Crawford and I wear a few hats at Odyssey, one of which is writing press releases and school stories for the Odyssey website. I became intrigued with Ghana and WATERisLIFE several years ago. After some brainstorming, Mrs. Snyder and I decided to define the goals with each campus. We will be educating about hygiene and sharing information about Ghana at the elementary campuses. In the winter, we will do a Change Challenge to raise money, showing that every little bit helps and the youngest of us can contribute. At the Junior High, we decided that interpersonal relationships would be the best way to connect on the other side of the world. They are all about the social at this time, right? Our PFS teachers have been working on establishing pen pals and writing letters to our fellow scholars that are the same ages. Kpaachi Yili enthusiastically liked the idea and have been working on writing letters back to our Junior High. A “fun run” will likely be a fundraiser that we are earmarking in the spring, as well as the change challenge. This trip will help determine the involvement in the classroom with the Odyssey Institute. Strategies and plans are being made to bring water from the well that Odyssey helped make at Kpaachi Yili into the school, as well as continued education with the village on making and selling soap. There are so many opportunities to bring in business, math, science, and art to our scholar’s curriculum.
Finally, I want to show that this is the perfect trip for Odyssey scholars. I decided to share the reasons why this is the perfect trip by connecting my adventure with the IB profile. I knew it was a great plan when I realized my trip was 10 days long and that there are 10 IB profile attributes. Outstanding! So, here we go!