A lesson on how to help people: Clothe The Naked

Petra: Dear David [Willie Tyson], we met by chance and you gave me one of the most memorable moments in Ghana – and my favourite in terms of kindness –. I then got to know that you’re into charity. I looked at pictures, I got glimpses into some of your events.
Can you please tell me more about your projects?

David: Clothe The Naked Outreach is a charitable organisation providing clothing assistance, educational opportunities and outreach programmes for the less-privileged people of Ghana, West Africa.
Clothe The Naked provides--
Clothing Assistance for the less-privileged people, especially orphans in orphanages, poor people in deprived communities, mentally-challenged people in psychiatric hospitals, and prisoners, with our Clothing Drive Project. The purpose of our Clothing Drive Projects is to redistribute clothing resources, which is our way of reducing the visible impacts of poverty, usually seen in the wearing of the same old tattered clothes by less-privileged people who often have less clothes than they need, and also our own way of reducing the amount of clothes that end up at dumping sites to pollute our environment.
Clothing drive, Clothe The Naked, Ghana
Educational Opportunities for the less-privileged children of Africa. Clothe The Naked runs a programme known as the CTN SCHOLARSHIP AID, which funds the education of orphans, abandoned children, and children from poor families in the deprived communities of Ghana, West Africa. The CTN Scholarship Aid funds the education of carefully-selected beneficiaries from kindergarten through to college/university. The purpose of the CTN Scholarship Aid is to equip needy children with the necessary skills, knowledge, and attitudes needed to change their own lives and the lives of their families and communities.
Clothe The Naked Outreach has also begun the construction of a school in a deprived community in the Central Region of Ghana where there is no school. Our CTN School shall provide-- tuition-free education, free uniforms, free stationery, free lunches, and all other things needed for a successful education for the children of the Dwen Daama village and the surrounding communities.
Scholarship Aid, Clothe The Naked, Ghana
Outreach programmes such as the Love-Machete Project, which provides free farm machetes and clothes to people living in deprived farming communities, with a purpose of empowering them to farm so that they can feed themselves and their families.
Love-Machete Project, Clothe The Naked, Ghana
Refresh The Orphan Project, which reaches out to children living in orphanages with clothes and footwear, food and drinks, entertainment, counselling and health screening – with a purpose of showing love to orphans, enhancing their sense of belonging and boosting their confidence in life.
Refresh The Orphan Project, Clothe The Naked, Ghana
Prisons and Psychiatric Outreach, which provides clothing and entertainment to mentally-challenged people in psychiatric hospitals and inmates of Ghanaian prisons, with a purpose of showing them love and boosting their sense of belonging.

Petra: How did it all start?

David: Clothe The Naked Outreach was started by a very passionate and inspiring young man called Mr. Stephen Quainoo, who believes his purpose here on Earth is to make a difference. Mr. Quainoo’s childhood experiences may have also contributed to this motivation for helping others; he grew up in a poor family where he used to wear used clothes that were passed on to him by others. But as he grew up, he realised that there were so many other people who were poorer than him, and that made him uncomfortable. He began looking out for ways to help and the first thing that came to his mind was redistribution of clothing resources. So he started collecting clothes from those who have more than needed for distribution to those who have less than needed, and eventually that grew into a charity organisation which is now called Clothe The Naked Outreach.
It is also important to note that if not for the kind courtesies of some strangers who took it upon themselves to fund Stephen’s education, he would not have been able to complete college, because his family did not have the means to fund his education.
Therefore, providing clothing assistance and educational opportunities for the less-privileged people of Ghana is more like Mr. Quainoo’s way of paying back what was given to him. The simple movement for clothes redistribution has now become a great organisation, which has benefited over 10,000 people so far, and I am proud to be a director of this organisation.
School project: David and Quainoo at Dwene Daama VIllage, Ghana

Petra: Did you notice an impact on the community, in general? If so, what changed?

David: So far fourteen (14) needy children are benefiting from our CTN Scholarship Aid, which funds the education of less-privileged children in Ghana. Beneficiaries of the CTN Scholarship Aid receive financial support, which covers their tuition fees, stationery, school uniforms, school bags, and footwear, school feeding fees or pocket money, hostel fees, and all other things needed for a successful formal education, from basic school to tertiary. Children who could have never stepped foot in classrooms are now schooling comfortably thanks to our aid.
About 600 people in deprived rural farming communities have received farming tools such as farm machetes from our Love-Machete Project, which has empowered them to farm and feed themselves and the thousands of family members who depend on them. These beneficiaries do not starve, nor go to bed on empty stomachs thanks to our help.
Love-Machete Project, Clothe The Naked, Ghana
Over 200,000 pieces of clothes wasting away in people’s wardrobes, which would have ended up in dumpsites to pollute the environment, have been rescued and distributed to those who need them in orphanages, psychiatric hospitals, prisons, and deprived rural communities of Ghana. The over 25,000 beneficiaries of our clothing assistance no longer walk around in tattered clothes and barefoot, with poverty drawn all over them. Most of these beneficiaries in orphanages and prisons have also benefited from the free health screening, free feeding, free entertainment, and free motivational talks within our outreach programmes.

Petra: Do you feel that you have set an example for other African nations to follow?

David: Clothe The Naked Outreach operates a very unique and innovative module of operation worth emulating by other organisations and youth groups in Africa in particular and around the Globe.
We are a group of young people who have come together to pull our resources together to help the less-privileged people in our communities. All our projects are being run and funded by ourselves. We currently have close to 200 members with a wide range of skill sets, who volunteer their services for the benefit of our beneficiaries and we also pay monthly dues to fund our projects. This explains how we have been able to run successful projects for years without a permanent staff nor external funding or sponsorship.
It is also important to note that the clothing assistances that we give out do not come from abroad and they are not bought nor imported we provide a channel for redistribution of clothing assistance by collecting clothes from those who have more than needed in Ghana, and giving them out to those who have less clothes than needed in Ghana. This prevents the situation where developing countries become dumping sites for developed countries.

Petra: What is next on your list? Are you planning some new events?

David: The next project on our list is the construction of a school building for the children of a deprived rural community called Dwen Daama, in the Central Region of Ghana. This community has over 50 children below 10 years but there is no school in the community the closest school to Dwen Daama is about 10 kilometres away in another community.
Clothe The Naked Outreach has secured a 2-acre land in Dwen Daama for the construction of a school for the community. Our school will provide tuition-free education, which will also provide free uniforms, free stationery, and all other needed things, for our students.
The purpose of this project is to make education accessible to the children of Dwen Daama and its surrounding villages and boost motivation for education among the children and parents of the community, in pursuance of our mission to empower the less-privileged people of Ghana for a better future.

Petra: How can we help/contribute?

David: Kind people are not necessarily the richest people on Earth; kind people are just those people who are willing to share the little that they have with those who have none. Kind people do not wait to become millionaires before they help others. We are counting on the support of kind-hearted individuals like you to make this project a success.

We are currently trying to raise US$ 15,000 for the first phase of our school building project, and your donation of just US$ 6 would buy us one bag of cement for the construction of the school for the children of Dwen Daama.

Donations can be sent through
MTN Mobile Money Number: +233557808749

For more information, you may call us +233557808749 or kindly visit our: 
Website: www.ctncharity.org

Pictures: © Clothe The Naked

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