During the recent Executive Committee meeting in of the Africa Alliance of YMCAs, the movement paid tribute to Samuel Anim, who held the position of National General Secretary of the Ghana YMCA for 12 years. Samuel is a great man who worked tirelessly towards youth empowerment and capacity building in Ghana. His retirement in January 2009 was a huge blow to Africa, having dedicated 33 years to the Ghana YMCA.
He was born in 1948, at Konongo, Ghana. Young Samuel was an excellent School Administrator and possessed a Teachers Certificate ‘A’ before joining Ghana YMCA in 1975 as a Hi-Y Coordinator. He was under the direct supervision of Mr. Schroeter from CVJM Germany. During his era, Samuel relentlessly established and organized YMCA branches in Schools and Universities in Ghana.
In 1982, he was promoted to the position of Secretary for Leadership Training (Training Officer). In this portfolio, Samuel instituted and coordinated in-house training programmes for the development of professional and auxiliary staff of the Association. Despite some serious setbacks in the mid-eighties when Ghana YMCA was staff-constrained and cash-strapped Samuel played a critical role as the acting Regional Secretary for the combined Regions of Ashanti and Brong Ahafo and as Acting National General Secretary in the absence of the then substantive NGS.
By dint of hard work, Samuel was recommended to enroll at Mindolo Ecumenical Foundation and received a scholarship for the pursuit of the course. He distinguished himself among his peers and obtained a Diploma in Social Youth Work. Having accumulated in-depth knowledge in Community Development, Christian Education, Youth Work, Recreation, Sociology, Management, and Production, he was unanimously decided on as the person best fit for the Deputy National General Secretary position of Ghana YMCA in 1986. He supervised and provided managerial leadership to the Ghana YMCA Hostel, Guest Houses, and Canteen operations. Samuel served on numerous YMCA committees such as Ghana YMCA Headquarters Renovation, and Ghana YMCA Production Training Unit Privatization.
His ability to establish rapport with Ghana YMCA’s international partners led to swift responses from donors to sponsor youth capacity building projects and programmes. As a result, Ghana YMCA became one of the best recognized local NGOs for its community-based programmes.
From 1994 to 1995 Samuel held the position of first Fraternal Secretary to the Western Federation of YMCAs in Germany (CVJM-West bund), the first of its kind in Europe. As Fraternal Secretary, he worked closely with the Secretary of World Service and International Relations. Through this, awareness was created on the need for local associations to identify with the YMCA in the global context. He also visited over 300 local associations where he was involved with children, youth, and adult groups in their personal development.
Whilst in Germany, Samuel excelled in the execution of his responsibilities. He was recommended and sponsored to pursue a Bachelor of Science in Human Service, Springfield College, USA. After graduating with a distinguished pass, in 1996, he assumed the top position of National General Secretary of Ghana YMCA - a duty he responded to for 12 good years until his retirement in January 2009.
We thank Samuel Henry Edward Anim for his development of the national movement, and his commitment to youth, and we comment him for his achievements at national level and in the international arena. Thank you Samuel, go well, we wish you a well-earned rest and know that you will always be a friend to the YMCA, your extended family.
Photo: Samuel Anim accepts an honourary plaque from Evelyn Sadio, Africa Alliance Executive Committee Member from Senegal YMCA; staff photo.
By: Prosper Kweku Hoeyi, National General Secretary, Ghana YMCA