With our motto “Knowledge in the Service of Africa”, SOS-Hermann-Gmeiner International College (SOS-HGIC) emphasizes its CAS component not only as an IB programme requirement, but as an integral part of the school’s philosophy.
CAS simply means Creativity Activity Service, and is at the heart of the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP). With its holistic approach, CAS is designed to strengthen and extend students’ personal and interpersonal learning, and is organised around the three strands of creativity, activity and service defined as follows:
- Creativity—exploring and extending ideas leading to an original or interpretive product or performance
- Activity—physical exertion contributing to a healthy lifestyle (not necessarily meaning sports)
- Service—collaborative and reciprocal engagement with the community in response to an authentic need
As a shining beacon of our values, CAS enables students to grow as unique individuals and to recognize their role in relation to others. Students develop skills, attitudes and dispositions through a variety of individual and group experiences that provide them with opportunities to explore their interests and express their passions, personalities and perspectives. CAS complements a challenging academic programme in a holistic way, providing opportunities for self-determination, collaboration, accomplishment and enjoyment, as well as enabling students to demonstrate attributes of the IB learner profile in real and practical ways.
CAS in SOS-HGIC dates back to the establishment of the school. By our unique nature as a college built and partially funded by SOS-Kinderdorf International, a charitable, non-profit organisation which provides home and education for abandoned, orphaned and destitute children in many countries in the world, the college from its establishment, emphasized the importance of community service even before we received recognition as an International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma school. This was to create awareness of the less fortunate in society among our students and to inculcate in them the spirit of giving back to the society.
It was expected that as the students participate in the community service programs, they will acquire the attitude and values that will enable them to contribute meaningfully to the development of their countries and Africa as a whole.
CAS cuts across the entire college population involving staff and students, as well as parents and other stakeholders. When we try to live our school motto, “Knowledge in the service of Africa”, through CAS, we try to start close to home, so to be able to give as much as possible without being restricted by time and distance.
IB1 CAS Fundraiser
As part of our tradition and the IBDP, each year, our first year IB students raise funds to support our Community Service work with deprived communities in both urban and rural areas close to the school in the following areas:
- Water and Sanitation
- School Library / ICT Facilities
- Health Awareness and Screening
- ICT Awareness
Some of the communities and schools we have worked with successfully are:
- Kakasunaka, Greater Accra Region
- Dedenya, Shai Hills
- Mafi Aklamador,
- Padmore Street School, Community 1, Site 1,
- Community 8 No. 2 School, Tema
- MAKAD Community Library, Mampong Akuapem
- Zoozugu, Tamale.
Thursday CAS programme
As part of our school schedule, CAS in SOS-HGIC runs on Thursdays from 3:15 -5:00 pm. A variable range of CAS opportunities are created for students’ experiences every Thursday afternoon from 3:15 – 5:00 pm. These include:
Students engage in a range of visual art disciplines including:
- Pottery/ ceramics
- Wire weaving
- Basket weaving
Items produced by students are sold at school events to raise funds for our CAS projects.
Fashion and Accessories:
Students learn beading and macramé techniques to produce jewellery, decorative household items and fashion accessories. Items are sold at school events to raise funds for our CAS projects.
This group focuses on students learning the basic techniques of sewing to produce simple clothing, fashion and home accessories. Items produced by this group are also sold at school events to raise funds for our CAS projects.
Learning Links Literacy and ICT programme:
The Learning Links programme is intended to engage with local communities and schools where students provide support to Primary and Junior High School pupils in areas of literacy and ICT. The schools we currently work with are Padmore Street School, Community 8 No. 2 JHS and Star Community School in Tema. St. Nicholas School, located in Tema New town, has been added to the programme this year. Students, with the guidance of CAS supervisors, devise curriculum materials and lesson plans to meet the varying needs of the school children they work with in these schools
SOS Village Community Service:
As part of our Thursday CAS programme, some SOS-HGIC students visit the SOS-Children’s Village in Tema to interact with the children through games, sports and their academic work. Students are affiliated to the various homes in the village and assist the children who are aged between 4 – 15 years with homework, as well as teach them some basic learning and life skills. The most important aspect of this is the relationship that develops between our students and the children, and the values of care, thoughtfulness and love our students develop through their interaction with them.
Techno CAS Video:
Students in this group develop skills in taking and editing videos and are involved in covering major school events like Christmas Concert, Band in Concert, Careers’ Day, to mention but a few.
This group ran for the first semester only. Students learnt a range of skills that enabled them to provide medical assistance at major school events including school sporting events, the sponsored walk and annual fundraiser.
Students are taught disciplines and techniques in acting through a range of activities and exercises. The group showcases their work during the annual CAS School Play.
Students learn traditional Ghanaian and African dance routines, together with drumming and storytelling. The group normally performs during school events like National Day celebrations and the end of year Speech and Prize Giving Day.
Batik tie & dye:
Students are taught how to produce beautiful fabrics through basic and somewhat complex tie and dye, and batik techniques. Fabrics produced are used for the school choir attire and sold at various school functions to raise funds for our various community service projects
This group focuses on converting waste materials or useless products into new materials or products of better quality or a higher environmental value.
Saturday Community Service:
Twice every semester, IB1 students engage in a class wide community service where members offer their support and assistance in cleaning, teaching, etc. to a selected underprivileged community or school.