By Student, Semester at Sea, Spring 2017

In this port, I did homestay the whole time in Senase village with Semester at Sea’s impact program. Senase is a small rural farming village in Ghana and 10 hours’ drive from the port of Tema. As a part of the SAS program, I visited the the Semanhyiya American School in the village. The purpose of visiting the school is to help teachers to teach English to children. After spending my time there for two days, I realized the village has a similar situation to the documentary about child trafficking that we watched in the class. In Ghana, at the end of Junior Secondary School (9th grade), all students must take the Basic Education examination, which covers English language, Ghanaian Language, mathematics, history, science, to name but a few. The exam is nation-wide, and only students who pass the exam can proceed to high school. According to the local guide, the quality of teachers in the village is lower than the quality of those in urban area. Thus, many children in the village cannot pass the exam and force to stay in the school for three more years to study again. However, many children who do not pass in the village usually choose to make their way to the city to find work where they are most often met with a horrible existence of living on the streets. In the case of the young girls, they do not have adults that they can count on in urban area, so they spend time with older friends who encouraged them to get into prostitution. According to the local guide, truancy is a major cause of prostitution. All of the prostitutes had not completed secondary school or were attending school.