Audience stood and clapped when the Executive Director of MTN Ghana Foundation, Mrs. Cynthia Lumor announced Madam Genevieve Basingha as the ultimate winner of this year’s MTN Heroes of Change.
She received a cheque worth GH¢100,000, a trophy and a citation at the grand finale of the season III of the MTN Heroes of Change programe held at the National Theatre in Accra last night.
Three other winners- Rev. Moses Asaah, Rev. Monsignor Alex Bobby Benson and Jack James Dawnson won prizes in the education, health and economic empower categories of the programme. Each of them took home GH¢30,000 , a trophy and a citation. While the remaining six finalists also received GH¢10,000 each.
The prize monies are meant to support their community projects.
Speaking through a video, the Chief Executive Officer of MTN Ghana, Ebenezer Asante encouraged the MTN Heroes of Change Season III winners to keep on shining, and keep on touching more lives in the country.
Let’s all go out and create opportunities for members of our communities. Let’s be the change we wish to see, Mr Asante admonished.
In her welcome address, Mrs Lumor said the winners have helped to improve the lives of many others through their humanitarian activities across the country.
“Today’s event is special because we are celebrating 60 years of our independence as a country and 10 years of MTN Ghana Foundation. MTN Ghana Foundation considers it a responsibility to contribute to the socio-economic development of the country we operate”.
Madam Basingha who spoke through a sign language interpreter said: “With God, everything is possible”. She used the opportunity to thank MTN Ghana for the honour done her.
Who is Madam Genevieve Basingha?
She wanted to be a Nurse and later a Medical Doctor in the future but her dream cut short due to an accident in Wa in the Upper West Region of Ghana which led to her deaf and dumbness.
However, with a determination, Genevieve Basingha managed to complete Junior High School in 1994, and later attended the Mampong School for the Deaf in the Eastern Region, the only Senior High School in Ghana for the deaf and dumb.
After completion, Madam Basingha went back to her hometown Wa and started apprenticeship to become a seamstress. Luckily, she fell in love and got married to her current husband in 1997.
The couple, according to narrations migrated from Wa to Obuasi popularly known as “Gold City” in the Ashanti Region of Ghana due to the husbands work. Madam Basingha could not therefore complete her apprenticeship.
At Obuasi, she did not to give up on the many abandoned deaf and dumb children everywhere in the city. Madam Basingha therefore renewed her passion to set up one of the few Schools for the deaf and dumb in the country in the year 2014.
Madam Basingha established the Research Utilization School for the Deaf (RUSFORD) in Obuasi with few deaf and dumb pupils. Within three years, Madam Basingha has single-handily provided access to basic education for over 200 deaf and dumb children who never thought that they would ever have access to education.
She does not treat these deaf and dumb children as just pupils, Madam Basingha has made them her family.
With the help of her deaf but abled and supportive husband, Madam Basingha provides home, food, security and clothes for the pupils and staff of the school through all the hard times even when the parents of these deaf and dumb children, the community members and the government have turned deaf ears and blind eyes on their pleas.
Madam Basingha is also one of the two teachers who teach over 60 pupils from Nursery to primary School.
Her RUSFORD project was featured prominently on the ninth episode of the ongoing season III of the MTN Heroes of Change which is MTN Ghana Foundation flagship project.
Despite being deaf and dumb, Madam Basingha was nominated by the people of the Obuasi municipality to participate in this year’s MTN Heroes of Change programme which she beat nine other contests to win the ultimate prize.
Earlier, the MTN Heroes of Change programme highlighted the humanitarian activities of the 10 nominees in the areas of health, education and economic empowerment on GTV, Multi TV, TV3 and GhOne channels for 13 weeks.
Instructively, the MTN Heroes of Change was initiated in July 2013 to recognise and reward persons who have provided significant humanitarian services to their communities through personal sacrifices.
The MTN Ghana Foundation is the corporate social responsibility (CSR) arm of MTN Ghana, the leading telecoms service provider in the country.