The Ghana Youth Movement for Peace and Progressive Development (GYMPED) has held the 2018 edition of the Ghana Humanitarian and Business Awards (GHB) Awards to honour deserving personalities and organisations.
The award scheme is aimed at honoring national heroes and rewarding the works of those engaged in providing humanitarian assistance in deprived communities within and outside the country.
The ceremony, which took place August 18 at the Coconut Grove Regency Hotel, also recognised
a number of NGO’s, CSOs, media and business players who have contributed to the socio-economic and development of the country.
The night featured a performance by celebrated Ghanaian Poet Evelyn-the-Piper, who entertained the audience with classic poetic narrations centered on the Awards.
Below are recipients of the various categories:
Humanitarian Service Award Winner of the Year-2018 – H.E. Rev. Dr. Princess Asie Ocansey from USA/Canada.
Ghanaian Humanitarian Ambassador of the Year-2018 – Prof. Azumah Nelson
MLM Company Personality of the Year – Dr. Williams Anarfi
Private Business Development of the Year – Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom
Social Life & Health Protection Advocacy – Kwami Sefa Kayi
GHB Special Awards on Investments Developments – Mr. Robert Anamolga
Young Entrepreneur Achiever of the Year – Harold Kofi Nkrumah
Other companies and social groups recognised for their philanthropic works include:
VERNA Mineral Drinking Water
Melcom Care Foundation
Lintel Aid Ghana
Youth Business Network Foundation
Priceless Brother Foundation
Lionize Tourism Consult
Oracle Multimedia Company Ltd
Source: Ghana | Myjoyonline.com | JTM
LTCPhilanthropists, others honoured at maiden GHB Awards
“Hard work does not go unnoticed and someday, the rewards will follow” – Alan Rufus
The Forty under 40 Awards is to identify, honor and celebrate a cross-section of the nation’s most influential and accomplished young business leaders under the age of 40 from a wide range of industries, who are committed to business growth, professional excellence and community service and have risen up the ranks of their companies or industries at a relatively young age as result of this.
The organizers believe that in putting the spotlight on these young achievers, it will not only celebrate them but also build a strong platform for them by giving a voice and opportunities to the next generation of industry pacesetters whiles building a positive attitude in the youth to strive for excellence at a tender age.
The award board seeks outstanding entrepreneurs, executives, managers and professionals in the public and private non-profit sectors who have been able to overcome challenges and economic stability to ensure the satisfaction of others. They recognize attributes such as achievements in business, experience and innovation, vision, leadership, and community involvement.
The requirements for eligibility are that: candidates must be Ghanaian, living and doing business in Ghana, they must be entrepreneurs or Chief Executive Officers of companies, they must still be under the age of 40, by event date, nominations can be anonymous and letters of recommendation are not required, and finally, nominees with multiple submissions will have no advantage over those that have single nominations.
Startups are a tricky business anywhere in the world. The life of a founder means high-stress, self-financing and countless long hours in the quest to fill a gap in the market.
No one knows this better than Joseph Asameni Obiri. Hailing from Accra, the capital city of Ghana, Obiri drained his bank account, turned his bedroom into an office, and has faced countless setbacks, but his faith has never wavered in his mission: to make his beautiful country accessible to people with disabilities.
Obiri launched his startup company, Lionize Tourism Consult, in December, 2016. His company is focused on including persons with disabilities (PWDs) in Ghana’s tourism: both those already here and those who want to visit.
His first event offered a free tour to students from a hearing and visually impaired school in Ghana. He completely self-funded the tour, taking the pupils around Accra. Obiri rented a bus to take the children and teens to visit a library, memorial park and then a shopping mall. The kids, who usually had limited access to the sights of the city, loved it. By the end of the tour, they were literally singing his praises from the back of the bus.
The experience only reaffirmed Obiri’s belief that Ghana needs to be more open to people with accessibility needs. A ten-year veteran of the Ghanaian tourism industry, Obiri’s business was born from his frustration that people with disabilities were not coming to his safe and stable West African country. More than that, even native Ghanaians with disabilities had often not seen much of their own backyard.
To a savvy entrepreneur, it seemed like an opportunity ripe for the picking. “People with disabilities want to travel, if you just give them the opportunity, ” Obiri says.
Tourism catering to people with disabilities has the potential to be big business in Ghana: a 2015 report from the Open Doors Organization suggests that in America alone, more than 26 million disabled adults traveled for pleasure or business, spending more than $17.3 billion annually.
After his first free tour, which proved his concept, Obir branched out. He took pupils from a school catering to Ghanaians with intellectual disabilities to one of Accra’s top hotels and a botanical garden. The tour was another success; one of the older participants even took Obiri aside and said he wanted to intern at the hotel they visited. “He said he doesn’t care about being paid… so long as the people around him see he is doing something with his life,” Obiri remembers.
In April, Obiri did a tour to Ghana’s Eastern Region for a paragliding festival, bringing along about 30 visually impaired adults through the Ghana Blind Union, a local blindness advocacy group. There, he was even allowed to take one of his customers paragliding, even though the organizers originally said it was too dangerous. Local media covered the event: it was the first time a visually-impaired person had ever gone paragliding in Ghana.
To date, Obiri’s paragliding adventure was his last tour. So far, he has paid for all of his trips out of his own pocket, he is now looking for funding. In the meantime, Obiri is trying to sell tour packages to people with disabilities who live outside of Ghana, using his successful free tours to prove there’s plenty of opportunities for travelers with accessibility needs to travel within his beautiful country. His ultimate goal is to help fund free tours for Ghanaians with special needs from the money he charges foreigners.
“The real market is out there,” says Obiri. “We have the evidence.”
A member of the Ghana Blind Union, Eric Kissi made history at the 2017 Kwahu Paragliding Festival, becoming the first visually impaired person to take a ride.
Blake Pelton (right) was the pilot of Eric during that historic moment.
Watch the excitement as Eric made history
Eric Kissi flanked on his right by Ohene from Lionize Tourism Consult who took him and other visually impaired tourists to the festival; Blake Pelton his pilot, Jonathan Aquaye the only Ghanaian pilot and Kelvin of 3news.com.
Source: 3news.com | Ghana
LTCVideo: First Ghanaian visually impaired to participate in Kwahu Paragliding Festival
Some pupils of the New Horizon Special School were over the weekend taken on mind-soothing tour initiated by Lionize Tourism Consult.
The tour dubbed ‘Intellectual Disability Tour’ saw the pupils taken to Golden Tulip Hotel-Accra, where they had breakfast with the owner, Paul Kavanagh, and taken around the facility by the human resource officer.
They were also taken to the Legon Botanical Gardens, where they engaged in a number of recreational activities
Chief Executive Officer of Lionize Tourism Consult Ohene Obiri lamented the neglect of special kids in the Ghanaian society.
“Often the nation doesn’t factor them in decision making so the Intellectual Disability Tour is designed to create awareness for people to see them as part of us,” he said.
He said those with autism tend to be intensely isolated and often bullied especially when found among normal students.
He called for a collective effort to help make special kids feel welcome.
Principal of New Horizon Special School Vanessa Adu-Akorsah was full of praise after the tour, calling for more of such programmes for the kids.
“We need more of such programmes for the children to feel part of society.”
Lionize Tourism Consult; a tourism company with interest in Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) over the weekend organized a tour for 25 students of the New Horizon Special School in Cantoments, Accra.
The tour dubbed “Inclusive Tour”, which is the second of its kind was to entertain and educate these groups of people who are often left out in tourism opportunities.
The students were between the ages of 9 to 41 years and suffered from various types of disabilities such as autism, down syndrome and fragile X syndrome.
The first stop was at the Golden Tulip Hotel in Accra where the General Manager, Mr Paul Kavanagh had an interactive and educational session with the students.
Mr. Kavanagh after interacting with them said, “These students are beautiful and I think it’s a great initiative where businesses like us can play a part and support Persons with Disabilities. I would like to encourage all businesses in Ghana to step forward and identify how they can help.”
The students were also taken on a tour to the Legon Botanical Gardens for recreational activities where Prosper Kwami, the administrator took them round the facility to enjoy the beautiful scenery.
The Vice Principal of the New Horizon Special School, Madam Jocelyn Adoboe noted that although, the students are occasionally taken out on field trips during the week, no organization had extended an invitation to take them out on a full tour. “This is the first of its kind and the organizers have really done an amazing job by letting these students feel included in the society because social inclusion is also a right for people with special needs”
The founder of Lionize Tourism Consult, Joseph Obiri in an exclusive interview with ghanabusinessnews.com, said the aim of organizing such tours was to “encourage, integrate and promote PWDs into domestic tourism in Ghana.”
He also said that, “PwDs are part of society and it is about time to let the world know that they are not different from the rest of us. They also have the right to enjoy sightseeing and get entertained.”
He indicated his organization’s readiness to make Ghana the go-to destination for tourism for persons with disabilities in West Africa.