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Social Impact
Off The Grid
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London/Toronto, United Kingdom

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We are a small charity that facilitates #creative #projects for underprivileged children and women. We currently work in #Ghana, #Mexico, #Israel and #Mongolia!

About us

Akosia is a small UK based charity that facilitates creative projects for underprivileged children and women who have had little exposure to the limitless possibilities of their own creativity. We believe that children and women have all the answers, and that it is our job to ask the right questions and provide the tools that will help them create something they can be proud of. We involve artistic professionals – filmmakers, musicians, writers, artists – and teachers in our projects to build an environment in which the children and women are guided through a creative process while being encouraged to respond to their own initiatives and ideas. The children and women learn a variety of communication and management skills, which enable them to express themselves, build self-confidence and explore their imagination.

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What is our philosophy?

Akosia firmly believes that all children and women are resourceful and passionate, and providing a creative learning environment is an integral step in one’s development. Our creative projects encourage participants to explore their creativity and imagination through experiential learning rather than being ‘taught’ in a conventional manner. This creates a tremendous sense of accomplishment and inner confidence that the children and women will carry with them.
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What is the history of Akosia?

In October 2008, Quinn Simpson and Maria Schonfeld developed a programme for Ghanaian street children that would inspire them to stay in school and that would engage their creativity. Maria had first gone to Accra, Ghana in 2003 to work for Street Academy and during her time there she wrote and directed a play with the students. She then set up a charity to continue this process annually and returned in 2006 to see the progress of her drama project. When she saw how positive the project had been for the children, she decided it was important for her to go back and do even more. With Quinn’s youth coaching background and Maria’s passion to work creatively with young people, the pair created Akosia.

In the early stages, their intention was simply to provide an experience that the children would always remember. They wanted to strengthen the children’s creativity, imagination and drive, whilst helping them gain confidence in their own abilities. Quinn and Maria felt it was necessary to bring in more people with a variety of experiences so they brought in elementary school teacher, Lisa Grassa, whose vision was perfectly aligned with those of the project. As the Akosia project grew, so did the team, which now includes musicians, filmmakers, photographers, coaches and much more.

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