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Supporting the scaling up of a community-based early childhood education program to support children’s development in Ghana

Progress stage
Mar 2023 to Sep 2026
  • Ghana
  • Education
  • Mar 2023 to Sep 2026

The Lively Minds project aims to ensure that kindergarten children are prepared to have a better start in school. The program provides parents and teachers with training that will enable them to carry out their own educational games as well as better care at home. FID funding will enable the scaling-up of the project in 60 districts in the country.

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Research shows that children enrolled in kindergarten are less prone to drop out or repeat grades before entering primary school, and are more likely to complete primary and secondary school.

Although Ghana has introduced two compulsory years of Kindergarten into the primary education system, the quality of Kindergarten is low and marred by a lack of trained teachers, large class sizes, and a lack of play-based resources. Recognizing the benefits of investments in early childhood education, the Ministry of Education and the Ghana Education Service initiated a commitment to preschool education, targeting rural areas of the country that are struggling with lack of human and material resources.

Supporting the scaling up of a community-based early childhood education program


The Lively Minds program aims to reduce barriers to preschool education by training Ghana Education Service employees and kindergarten teachers to set up educational playgroups for children aged 4 to 6. Teachers then train volunteer mothers to provide better care and stimulation for children at home and at school.

Each district will undergo the following phases:

  • “Set-up Phase” which is intended to mobilize and train teachers, parents and employees of the Ghana Education Service
  • “Embed Phase” to support the implementation of the program at the national and district levels for two years
  • “Sustain Phase” during which the districts and the government will continue to maintain the program independently after the withdrawal of Lively Minds

The Ghana Education Service is committed to scale up the innovation in 60 districts in the northern part of the country by 2026. As of January 2023, Lively Minds has successfully launched the program in over 1,500 schools, trained nearly 7,000 Ghana Education Service workers and teachers and 56,000 mothers, who have in turn stimulated the development of nearly 14,000 children. The program has had a very positive impact on children’s health and development, especially among children from disadvantaged households.

FID funding will support the scaling up of the program through these 3 phases in 60 districts in the North of the country, particularly the final “sustain” phase.

Expected results

The purpose of this project is to strengthen the capacity of the Ghanaian government to manage and sustain the Lively Minds program in the districts where it is already operating, so that it can be scaled up to other regions.

  • Strengthen the government’s capacity to implement Lively Minds in 60 districts
  • Support the Ghana Education Service to run and sustain the program by themselves in the upcoming years
  • Develop a strategy to guide the transition from Lively Minds’ support to full government takeover
  • Develop various tools in order to scale up the program in other regions, under the initiative of governments
  • Improve early childhood development and academic performances in Ghana
Une femme anime un atelier avec des enfants qui sont assis sur un tapis
Lively Minds

Lively Minds

Lively Minds is a NGO that works through local governments in Ghana and Uganda to improve the quality of life for children and their families in highly deprived rural communities by using creative education programs.


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