Philip goes to school for the first time, thanks to RYTHM Foundation
Growing up, Philip Obeng had no friends and was often lonely. His father abandoned the boy when he was three years old after realising that his son could not speak and is hearing-impaired.
“After my husband abandoned us, I struggled to make ends meet. I could not afford to send Philip to a special school that helps children like him, so he would be home most of the time playing by himself,” his mother Vivian explains.
She watched how unhappy her only son was and how he struggled to communicate and express his needs.
“One day, I found out about ANOPA through some people and reached out to them for assistance. I was so happy that they were willing to help,” she says.
ANOPA is an international sports project based in Cape Coast, Ghana that uses sports as an instrument for individual development, promotion of gender equity, peace and other important soft and social skills for kids in the Central Region of Ghana.
After assessing Philip’s situation, ANOPA Project with funding from RYTHM Foundation agreed to take care of his education and enrolled him at the Cape Coast School for the Deaf and Blind. He will be supported financially for a year during which food, school fees, uniform and other educational materials will be taken care of.
ANOPA Project Executive Director Ernest Appiah says Philip likes to play football and is eager to make new friends.
“We encourage him to stay in school and study so that one day, he will be able to take care of himself and his mother. We will also enroll Philip in our sports clubs where he will learn swimming, football and basketball,” he said.
Philip will be staying in the school dormitory as his family lives in Assin Aworoso, about 200 km from Cape Coast.
Vivian is happy to see the excitement on 12-year-old Philip’s face as he gets up in the morning to go to school.
“I am happy to see my son finally being able to go to school, learning, and making friends. Thank you ANOPA Project and RYTHM Foundation,” she said.
She is now learning to sew women’s clothing and hopes to earn enough money to support herself and Philip.