Children of the Light (CotL) is a registered Charitable Organisation in Ghana, Reg. No. DSW/3233, and in New Zealand, Reg. No. CC44538. The organisation has been operating in Ghana, West Africa since 2005.
CotL runs year-round educational programs for children aged 5 to 16 years in one-to-one and small group learning settings.
Since 2005, we have had over 3000 children participate in our various programs.
CotL is managed by a Board of Directors/Management Committee. This Management Committee meets at least four times a year to discuss and make decisions on pertinent issues. The decisions are made by the Management Committee based on CotL’s Governing Document and the monthly Calendar of Events.
CotL has a staff of seven, four teachers, two cooks and one grounds person. The teaching staff are also involved in other tasks that contribute to the smooth running of the organisation. The cooks prepare meals for Saturday and special programs while the grounds person assists with ongoing work on the land.
CotL benefits from a consistent flow of volunteers who provide immense support across all areas of the organisation.
1. To have a fully equipped, easily accessible learning centre that provides quality education to many children in Ghana.
2. To become an educational training resource provider in Ghana and create CotL branches of the organisation.
- Through donations, CotL has built a Learning Centre in Ghana’s Eastern Region, which was officially opened in August 2019. Construction initiated in 2009, and we are now in its final stages. We have also established a spacious playing field, planted various trees and flowers, and allocated land for farming on the property. Construction of the perimeter wall has started.
- We’ve opened a branch in a remote village in Northern Ghana, where we’ve repurposed two small rooms into a vibrant library and a storage area for our kitchen supplies
- We’ve purchased a seven seater vehicle to improve transportation
- Many of our past students have pursued higher education and careers, while our current students continue to benefit from the program, acquiring a vast amount of knowledge and skills.
- Increase our monthly donor support to assist with the operational cost of the centre, branch, and all our special programs
- Upgrade the solar batteries for improved performance
- Acquire an extra water tank for water storage
- Build and furnish an outside kitchen
- Finish constructing the entire perimeter wall on the property
- Continue with landscaping, gardening, and agricultural work on the property
- Acquire extra classroom furniture and IT equipment
- Upgrade the 4×4 pickup vehicle
- Acquire land and construct a library with living quarters attached at our branch in Northern Ghana.
My name is Jeanette Brown. I was born in Auckland, New Zealand, and I am the Founder and Director of Children of the Light (CotL). I have been living in Ghana, West Africa since 1994. I have three children and two adorable grandchildren. All three of my children were born and raised in Ghana.
I attended Marist College in Auckland. After finishing school, I completed a hairdressing apprenticeship with Winter’s Hairdressing. Following my graduation, I travelled the North Island of New Zealand and worked in various jobs, including picking fruit on orchards. After some time, I returned to Auckland, worked for the New Zealand Post Office as a postwoman, saved money, and then travelled abroad. While I was overseas, I spend most of my time in London working as a waitress. It was during this time that I visited Ethiopia. Upon setting foot on African soil, I was intrigued by everything I experience and prayed that one day I could live there. When I returned to New Zealand, I applied to study nursing and was accepted at Carrington Polytechnic. After graduating as a Registered Nurse in 1994, I worked for a short time before packing up and moving to Ghana. There, I met my husband (now separated) and had three children. It was when my children were young that I started the CotL program. This was due to the lack of engaging programs for children in the area where we lived. In the second year of starting CotL, I was offered a job as a Preschool Teacher at the American International School in Accra. I spent seven years there and later moved to the Liberty International School, where I worked there for almost two years in various roles. Throughout this time, the CotL program continued to run, and I gained extensive experience working in these schools. In January 2015, I took on a full-time managerial/teaching position with CotL.
I enjoy gardening, hiking, visual and performing arts and I am passionate about environmental issues. My desire for CotL is for all children to have a fulfilled and happy childhood, to acquire the skills needed to reach their full potential, and to be inspired to give back to humanity and the world at large.
My name is Paulett Opoku. I was born in Jamaica, West Indies, and I migrated to the United States of America in 1969. Initially, I lived in the State of Connecticut and attended Hartford Public High School, graduating in 1969. Subsequently, I moved to New York City and attended Bronx Community College, where I attained my Nursing Degree.
I got married in 1974 and was blessed with three sons. I now have three granddaughters. I first travelled to Ghana in 1980 and subsequently moved there permanently in 2008.
I began volunteering with Children of the Light (CotL) in 2013 and have taken on the role of Board Secretary. During my previous employment in the USA, I served as the coordinator and nurse of a Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program. Currently, I facilitate the Teens Program at CotL. This subject is one I’m passionate about. I’ve personally witnessed the positive transformation that can occur in teenagers when they recognise their value as contributions to society and are equipped with the tools to make informed choices, empowering them to confidently say ‘No’ when needed.
Overall, at this stage of my life, living in Ghana, I’m learning new ways of doing things.
My name is Sharon, and I am the Treasurer for Children of the Light, Ghana. I am a born and bred New Zealander with a mix of English, Irish, Swedish and just recently discovered Norwegian heritage. In 1986, I travelled to the USA and spent 6 months exploring California, parts of Canada and down into Florida where I lived with friends for 3 months. I then travelled to New York and onto London, England, where I lived for 2 ½ years while working as a secretary for various companies. I returned to New Zealand in 1989 with Stephan, whom I met while working for a Swiss company in London. We married and had our identical twin daughters who are now 27 years old.
I enjoy dancing, yoga, spending time with my daughters, watching movies, being creative, travelling abroad, and going on road trips around beautiful New Zealand. For the past 20 years, I have been a Secretary at an Auckland High School, and I truly enjoy working in the ‘Education’ sector. Within the Children of the Light organisation, my role is that of Treasurer. I oversee donations made by New Zealanders and assist in editing documentation for social media purposes and correspondence.
I am enjoying learning more about Ghana, its people, and culture through Children of the Light. I feel privileged to be associated with this amazing organisation, thanks to my lifelong friend and Founder, Jeanette Brown.
Hello, I’m Sarah Moxon, a Ghanaian from the Eastern Region, specifically Kwahu. I grew up in Aburi with my family of six, and I am a mother of one. I completed my secondary education at Great Lamptey Mills and attended Montessori Training Institute for my tertiary education.
My hobbies and interests include cooking, listening to music, playing table tennis, reading, painting, engaging in indoor and outdoor activities, practicing arts and crafts, public speaking and conducting online research.
I began working with Children of the Light (CotL) in 2010. In my current position, I am the lead teacher for the younger children, work in the library, serve as the liaison person for parents of the children who attend the program, and act as the Master of Ceremonies for all the special programs we hold. I thoroughly enjoy my work at CotL as it provides me with the opportunity to be creative. This program is truly unique, and I deeply appreciate the rationale behind our work. We are a dedicated and committed team, all driven by the shared passion to witness the success of the children we serve. Through CotL, I have gained a great amount of experience and knowledge, and I’ve had the opportunity to interact with fascinating individuals from Ghana and various other countries.
Hello, my name is Patience Akunduo. I’m a Ghanaian, born in a small village near Sandema in the Upper East Region. I moved to the Eastern Region at a young and grew up in Kitase, Aburi. I am from a large family of ten.
I graduated from Aburi Senior High Technical, and later pursued my tertiary education at Jackson College of Education.
My interest and hobbies include reading, mathematics, cooking, vegetable gardening, playing football and hiking. I have hiked various places in Ghana, with my most challenging hike being up the tallest mountain in Ghana, Mount Afadjato, which stands at 886 metres.
I began working at Children of the Light (CotL) in 2014. My work involves teaching the older students, working in the library, and assisting in the office. The organisation’s mission inspires me to dedicate my utmost effort to help all the students I work with succeed. My aspiration is to be a teacher whom my students can look up to.
Working with CotL has provided me with numerous opportunities, including travelling to remote areas in Ghana and working with under-served children. It brings me immense joy to be part of an organisation that is dedicated to creating a brighter future for these children.
I am Silas Azong Anukaru. I am from a small community known as Dibisi in the North East Region of Ghana. I am the fifth child in a large nuclear family of eleven siblings.
I attended Wulugu Senior High School in the North East Region and proudly became the first person in my family to complete senior high school in 2017. Currently, I hold a Diploma in Computer Science from New Life College in Tamale.
Life in the village wasn’t a walk on a silver platter, however, the insights and experiences I gained have immensely aided me throughout my journey. I love my land and people and I’m forever grateful to God for whatever comes my way. In our community, farming and fishing are the primary occupations. It was my late father who taught me much about both in my childhood years. I would often spend hours after school and during the holidays on the river fishing or on the land farming. I love to swim and enjoy reading.
I enjoy my work with Children of the Light (CotL), as it gives me the opportunity to assist children in pursuing their dreams. Working with this organisation has been a valuable learning experience for me, and it is wonderful to share the knowledge I’ve gained. I have also enjoyed creating a garden around the small rooms that CotL has transformed into a vibrant library in the village. The collective efforts of the organisation are making a significant contribution to bringing positive change in the lives of the children, the community and the nation as a whole. Being a member of this organisation is truly fulfilling.
Hello, I’m Lamise Akunduo, a Ghanaian born and raised in a small village near Sandema in the Upper East Region. During my late adolescent years, I moved from Sandema to Aburi in the Eastern Region with my husband, Charles Akunduo. We are blessed with eight children and a beautiful grand-daughter. Among them, six are our biological children, and two are the children of my late sister. Currently, six of our children are young adults, while the youngest two are still in school.
My interests include sewing, cooking, watching movies, growing my own food, and being a helping hand in the church I attend. I currently work as a trader and work part-time for Children of the Light (CotL) as their cook. Cooking is something I truly enjoy, and I have become skilled in cooking large amounts of nutritious meals for the children who attend CotL. All of my children have participated in the CotL program, and I have personally witnessed how the program has positively impacted each one of them.