Atidekate’s mission is to improve the quality of life in Ghanaian communities by providing assistance for the meeting of community-identified, basic needs. These needs include water, sanitation, education, small business/agricultural, and youth development. Atidekate works directly with communities and provides funding on a project by project basis; the organization utilizes the significant human capital represented in Returned and current Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCV’s and PCV’s) and Ghanaians both in the U.S. and Ghana.
To accomplish this mission, RPCV’s, PCV’s, other Atidekate volunteers, Ghanaians and the Ghanaian communities and organizations work together to direct monetary and organizational resources towards the continuation and/or completion of community initiated, development projects. Atidekate provides the bureaucratic / organizational support needed to successfully complete community action plans, raise funds, and deliver monies to communities for these projects.
Atidekate benefits from the collective experience of its members, and strives to avoid the miscommunication observed in many development projects. Working in individual villages or towns, this organization communicates through PCV’s and RPCV’s, individuals with personal knowledge and interest in particular communities. It is left to the PCV or RPCV to work with that local community and their leaders to create an appropriate, integrated action plan for needed, development support. These action plans are established to explicitly delineate how the successful attainment of short-term goals will move a group towards the completion of medium-term goals, which will in turn aid in the meeting of long-term goals. Money is then raised by Atidekate to support, in a step-wise manner, this series of development projects.
We, as an organization, believe in the integrity of the human spirit and the right of all peoples to co-exist as equals, a right that is not fully satisfied in today’s world. The financial disparity between developed and developing countries has created a system where a few, elite states consume the majority of global resources. The remaining populations of the world control inadequate wealth to create universally available opportunities for financial stability and personal security. These opportunities are requisite on access to potable water and nutritious foods, sanitary waste disposal systems, education, health and youth development facilities, and the ability to support the continued supply of these basic needs to current and future generations.
Although arguments can be made on the role of past social injustice or political corruption in the creation of this economic disparity, Atidekate believes that the mandate of development assistance is simply a current society’s immediate willingness to share with its poorer members and to help build the capacity within these countries for self-sufficiency. The directives governing this support can be both spiritual and pragmatic and generally include the following:
These directives are immune to both internal and international borders; they do not define how development assistance is to be specifically performed. It is therefore our goal as an organization, governed by these directives, to create a vehicle by which we as individuals can lend our support to other peoples for the successful creation of their financial stability and personal security.
Atidekate believes that this directed, development goal is best achieved with work at the grassroots, community level. Through the empowerment of the individual and community can the most equitable and productive national institutions be created. This percolation effect strengthens a country at such a fundamental level that economic improvements wrought by this micro-scale focus will be enduring to the point of permanent change.