Day 22 – Kristy

 

 

 

I had a typical morning wake-up at 5 am. I tried to ignore the noise, but it was hard to ignore this morning. For breakfast we had the yummy, yummy pancakes and I was absolutely stuffed. I want to make sure that I ask Lizzy about the recipe, so that I can try to make them back at home. Once we were ready we went off to school. Mr. Moses asked us to teach the class one creative arts class. We were excited to try teaching a different course as we usually teach English class. The only concern we had was that the class was scheduled to last two and a half hours, which is a long time to try and keep the class one students interested and listening.

We wanted to get the kids to draw their favorite memory with detail. Mr. Moses explained this in Fante, and we thought the kids understood the lesson plan, but instead, they drew 5 different pictures. Most people drew buckets, tro-tros and TVs, which aren’t necessary memories but it still got them being creative and drawing. Afterwards, I thought that Pictionary might be a good idea with the kids, but I was worried that they may not be able to understand my instructions. Contrary to my belief, the game actually worked! I was so excited! The kids had a ton of fun playing and it actually lasted quite a long time. We got one kid at a time to come up and draw something on the board, the class then got a chance to guess what they drew and the student would say whether they were correct or not.

After teaching creative arts we went back to the house and had lunch. We got chicken today! After lunch, we went back to school because Justice had asked me to teach I. C. T class. We drew a desktop computer, labeled it, and then went over the answers. David is trying to get funding to start to make a computer lab in the school. The kids really enjoy learning about computers, and hopefully they will get the opportunity to use them since they are learning about them. The teachers ask us to teach the class because some of them have never used or even seen a computer.

After teaching ICT class, we went back to the volunteer house and met with Eric from IVHQ. The power had gone out, as it had for the past few days, so it was very hot. Eric wanted to check up on us and make sure that we were having a good time with our placement. After Eric left we worked on organizing our decorations for the party that we would be having for the kids at the center. We made signs, cards, and decoration rings. Sara and Corey also will be switching programs, so the party is a goodbye for everyone. We are planning on getting pop and some other treats for the kids as they do not usually get pop!

For dinner we had stew that had SAUSAGES in it! We were all very excited about this. But I didn’t eat much else for dinner so I had a protein bar instead and then had a delicious mango that I had bought a few days earlier. After dinner we went over to the center. We tried to help out with homework, but no one really had any homework to do… Instead a few of the local kids braided my hair, and the two little twin girls were trying to braid my hair but instead were just knotting my hair. We took pictures and played with all the kids for a while. The kids are so happy all the time and so adorable, I am truly going to miss each and every child. There is only 3 days left in Eguafo, it is hard to believe it. I am having mixed emotions as to leaving, I miss home and would love to go back home, but I am also going to miss all the kids so much. I am preparing myself for a massive cry-fest on Friday when we are saying goodbye to the center kids. But for now, it is bedtime!

Day 21 – Ashley

Rain, Rain, Go Away…

Happy final teaching Monday! It’s pouring rain outside and I’m sitting in bed writing to you, trying to dry off from the torrential downpour.

I spent the morning teaching at Sankofa School and since it was Monday Jo, Andra, and I had our standard 2 hour French lesson. It went really well, and with each passing day my confidence grows in terms of my French teaching ability. It is starting to feel so natural getting up there and teaching in front of the large classes of bright-eyed children. I also love the fact that the lesson that we are teaching is French as I spent all of my elementary years studying in an immersion school, so it’s nice to be able to honor my linguistic background.

During the afternoon a few of the girls wanted to go into Elmina to check the internet, pick up our custom made Ghanaian dresses, and go to the post office. Deciding to stay but still wanting to mail just one more letter, I quickly wrote a post card to Nan and Pop and slipped it to one of the traveling girls before they left. I like the thought the something that I send to them from the middle of the jungle will reach them in small town Seal Cove, Newfoundland. I hope they like the postcard! It wasn’t much, but I hope that it makes them smile.

While the girls were away Kristy, Jo, Sarah, and I decided to walk over to the stall by the road to get some bread and nut butter. The only thing was that the moment we walked out the door it started to rain again, and by rain…I mean downpour! So we soaked ourselves in the rain, shielding our bread from the torrential downpour. Upon returning we were wet through and though, and so with no power and not a dry bone in our body we pulled out our shampoo and showered in the rain.

By the time the other girls returned we had dried off, had hot chocolate, and eaten our bread. They came back with our dresses that were tailor made and a pocketful of sunshine. The dresses were hilarious. Some were too big, some were too small, some were too short, and others were too long, but considering the fact that we only gave her crude sketches to go by, they turned out pretty well! Plus the dresses double as completely unique, custom mad souvenirs with funny stories to go with it. So overall I am very happy.

After trying the dresses on and having a good laugh we sat down for dinner. The power went out, as it so often does, and we sat in the dark chatting away. That’s when David came in to say “Hello!” and behold he had a little friend with him. He was about one foot high, with big bulging brown eyes, and was covered in fur. This new friend, as it turned out, was a monkey! I nearly lost my marbles I was so excited! He claimed that it was his new pet and then declared that we could come and see it tomorrow. I cannot wait for tomorrow, between the 5 new born puppies and the baby monkey things are about to get a whole lot cuter!

xox

-Ashley-

Day 19 – Michele

Today was the final day of our trip to Green Turtle Lodge, as we planned to head home in the afternoon. In the morning, I headed down the beach to the nearest village of Akwidaa with Sarah, Jo, Ivy and some others. We scheduled a guided canoe tour of the Akwidaa river that runs through the village, with all proceeds (10 cedis each) going towards improving education the village through a fun that Green Turtle Lodge set up. On the tour we saw mangrove trees surrounding the entire lagoon, whose roots were deep underneath the bottom of the river. Within the mangrove trees were blue, red, white, and black mangrove crabs. We also saw kingfisher birds, a salamander, man fish, and another large bird which I cannot recall it’s proper name. Monkeys normally hang in the mangrove trees, but not until late July or August, so we did not see any. Moona Monkeys are a species of black monkey that is native to the area. I wish we would have got to see some! The canoe that Sarah and I shared had a hole in it, so it seemed, as the guide directed me in constantly scooping out the water with a wooden bowl. It was quite the adventure to say the least.
Afterwards, I enjoyed breakfast and a freshly brewed coffee which I have come to appreciate so much more. It has been quite a while since I’ve had a good cup of coffee. I sat in the shade for the afternoon and read, and the other girls relaxed in a similar fashion. It was nice to get away this weekend, but by the afternoon we could not wait to return to Eguafo and see what the children were up too. It’s funny how only a couple days away from the kids is hard, I cannot imagine what it will be like to go home. We left the lodge around 2pm and began our long journey back to Eguafo. We reached home around 6pm.
We arrived to good news! David’s pregnant dog had five healthy puppies. The people in the town and children at the centre were focused on the Manchester soccer game, or should I say football. A television had been set up in the town and everyone gathered in one place to watch the action. Anthony brought me a homemade drum he made for Hailey, my niece, which he crafted out of a tin can, some nails, elastic, and a rice sac. It is amazing how inventive the kids are and how they make use of everything, even things that we in Canada are quick to throw out. It is quite early still but the girls and I are extremely tired from our weekend and traveling. We are heading to bed early so that we can be well rested for tomorrow, as it marks the beginning of another school week!

- Michele

Day 18 – Elyse

 

Where is the sound of goats, music on from the megaphone, roosters, and running water? Back in Eguafo.
I woke up to only the sound of waves and to a beautiful day at Green Turtle Lodge. We just basked in the sun all day, re-applying sunscreen after jumping in the waves. At night we all chipped in to buy fire wood and we had a huge bomb-fire on the beach. It was the perfect end to a beautiful and relaxing day.
I felt a little guilty going away to Green Turtle Lodge and spending money on ourselves when we could have been helping the orphanage and school. As much as I missed the kids and thought we should have been helping back in Eguafo, we were helping out other local communities.
Green Turtle Lodge is run and owned by a English couple and is an ECO-tourism resort, “Environment and Community Oriented Tourism.” The whole lodge is solar powered; they use local, natural, and sustainable materials; and use self-composting toilets. They employ all local staff and have set up a community fund for the local community. They also have many tours and activities, such as a canoe trip, turtle conservation tours and cultural activities. A portion of all the tours goes to the community fund and it employs more local people.
It was nice to know that we were still helping the local community and it made me think of the different types of happiness that Aristotle describes: hedonic and eudemonic happiness. Hedonic happiness is the feeling happiness provides you as an individual and leaves you feeling unfulfilled and searching for the next best thing. Eudemonic happiness is happiness of your soul and the happiness you feel from doing things that align with your virtues. A fulfilling lives involves both of these types of happiness and the balance between them.

Day 17 – Joanna

This afternoon after teaching at Sankofa Basic School, we got in touch with a place called Green Turtle Lodge; an environmentally friendly beach resort. We were very lucky that they were able to accommodate all eight of us for the weekend on such short notice. We immediately started packing our bags and mapping out the route we would be taking to get there. Four hours and a bunch of trotro and taxi rides later, we arrived in a town called Dixcove.

We had just a little while to explore the town a bit until we were picked up by Hans. A man from Holland who works at the Lodge. He came into town to get a few items and did us the huge favor of taking us back to the resort. Since he came in an old five seater pick-up truck, three of us had to sit in the back. Michele, Ashley and I volunteered. We were warned that the ride would be about half an hour and that the roads were pretty rough. When we finally turned onto a long, windy dirt road I realized quickly that ‘pretty rough’ was an understatement. The road was so bumpy and covered in large rocks and wide pot holes. I was really surprised that we didn’t get stuck or pop a tire. We were holding on tight to anything that we could to keep us grounded from falling over.

As we approached resort the sun was setting and created a beautiful horizon in line with the ocean and palm trees. Up ahead I could see a wooden sign that read “Green Turtle Lodge”. The truck pulled in and we hopped out of the back. My hands were sore from holding on so tightly but I was too distracted to think about it. In front of us was a striking beach house made of bamboo logs and a straw roof. We saw an outdoor bar and restaurant along with hammocks and umbrellas on the beach. The staff showed us to our rooms so that we could drop off our belongings before dinner. The accommodations were very simple and cute. The beds were low to the ground and came with mosquito nets and there was a large window with shutters that looked out onto the beach. The washrooms were outdoor self-composting shared facilities. Everything was very clean and completely exceeded my expectations.

After dropping off our bags, we rushed over to the restaurant to have our first large meal in weeks. I ordered the BBQ chicken with potato wedges and mango-avocado salad which was delicious. Everyone kept saying how it was the best chicken they’ve ever had.

At the resort we also met three Germans who were here relaxing after working on a documentary and a British guy our age who now lives here. We spend the night chatting and having a few drinks in a little hut on the beach and later on moved to sit near the water. The sky was a dark blue-black completely lit up with billions of stars. It was hands down one of the most incredible sights I had ever seen. It didn’t look real; I felt like I was dreaming. I tried capturing it on my camera but no surprise that it just turned out black. I quickly gave up and just basked in the view I had above me because I realized that It’s one of those images that I’ll keep in my mind.

I never want to leave.

Day 16 – Kristy

Image

Today started off as a normal day with the 5 am -up, but unfortunately was not a happy one. When we went over to the school, the vibe felt different. The school kids usually run to welcome us as we approach but this time they were not excited to see us. We noticed that all the classes were clumped into one classroom and they were doing worship class. Also, the daycare program, were all together and singing a song about Jesus being their best friend. Then the bad news hit us… David called us all over, he is usually cheerful but this time he was serious and upset. He informed us that one boy from class two had passed away earlier this morning in the Cape Coast hospital. David did not say what exactly happened, but later informed us that he was in and out of the hospital due to a “sore stomach.” We had never met the little boy but David had asked us if we would attend the funeral to show our support.

We went back to the volunteer house to change into red since they wear red to funerals instead of black. When we came back to the school, the kids were on recess, we expected most of the kids to be crying and upset, but actually they were not acting any differently. After speaking to a few kids, we found out that some of the kids did not get upset over it because they had witnessed it before and it was more of a common occurrence here in Ghana. All of us had never witnessed a child passing away, and it was one of the most upsetting things to hear and see.

Andra approached one child that had been crying. She told us that the kids were poking fun at the one boy because his best friend passed away and because he was crying. After recess, the classes resumed, but no real lessons were going on. The girls and I were so upset and really did not want to teach or do anything. We sat with some of the ladies who help sell snacks at lunch and put on some red fabric that they hand out to all the children to show their support.

Some kids approached me and showed me the song and poem that they were learning. They were going to sing it at the funeral and needed help reading along. Then, the bell rang which meant that the kids were to get ready for the funeral. All the kids from classes one to nine lined up and we headed towards to the funeral. We all walked together towards the little boy’s village and where the funeral would be held. One boy stayed behind while the other kids walked off. He was supposed to be guarding the burial ground, which was behind the school, where they would be burying the little boy. As we approached the funeral we could hear the screaming, which is a sound I will never ever forget… There was a lady behind the houses that was crying hysterically. We believe that she was the mother. The men were sitting on one side of the white coffin while the women sat on the other side. There were also people who played musical instruments at some parts during the ceremony and would play them while looking into the coffin.

The kids from the school were lead to the back and we were given chairs in the front. Throughout the funeral, the music, cries, and prayers continued. There were several women who would constantly go up to the coffin and started to scream. It was most likely their immediate family. I had to fight back my tears several times. To witness this was probably the hardest thing I have had to do. Looking around, a lot of the kids were crying and very upset. After the school kids sang their song, they allowed everyone to approach the coffin and if you would like to, you could look into the coffin. I was not able to look in. I was too upset to actually see the boy. The older boys lifted the coffin and loaded it into a truck where it was transported to the burial grounds. Afterwards, they buried the coffin and we left behind our red fabric bracelets out of respect. The whole time I could not get the screaming and cries out of my head. It was so emotional and my heart broke for his family and friends.

After the burial, we went back to the school, all the kids were very upset and came up to us for hugs. Afterwards we all left the school. We were all speechless during lunch. We had nothing to say but to reflect about what just happened. We all went to our rooms and still did not talk for another few hours. It was the most quiet the eight of us had ever been. I still can’t comprehend that the child is gone and that he is no longer with us. I hope that these kids do not have to witness another friend passing away for a long, long time.

After relaxing for a while, a few of us stepped outside to read and to again, reflect about what we just experienced. It is pretty cool how used to the life here we are… We had chicken, goats and sheep walking all around us, the load speaker was blasting, and the lady with the fish on her head was saying that obnoxious saying. After dinner, we went over to the center and spoke to David a little bit more about the boy. Then we had a dance party with the kids to try and do something to get their minds off the emotional day that they just had…

Life is too short for some, it is so unfair.
May the little boy Rest In Peace.

- Kristy

Day 15 – Ashley

Last night I spent at the Center helping the children with their homework, playing with them, reading to the young ones and having my hair braided by the older ones. I absolutely love being able to have this time with the kids; it really allows a positive space to bond with them and to learn more about them as individuals.

That evening I spent a lot of time talking to Emmanuel, one of the oldest children at Sankofa Home. Emmanuel is an amazing young man standing at about 6’1, bright eyed, 15 years old, incredibly smart, and an excellent dancer. Honestly, it is baffling how intelligent he is. He spent the night telling me all about what he wanted to be when he grows up and I was utterly touched by his honesty and transparent understanding of life and the circumstances that surrounded him.

He wished to be a doctor. The problem, he said, was that in order to be a doctor you need money, as school is expensive. Not only that, but even if you managed to secure a sponsor to go to school the books required for medical school were exceptionally expensive. So, in Ghana, even if you got good grades and maybe even received a sponsor or scholarship for a year or two, you are still limited unless you have someone else financially supporting you. He spoke of how for Ghanaian children it seems that they feel that no matter their intelligence and no matter how hard they work at school, they still cannot break the cycle of poverty.

Emmanuel continued to explain to me that since children in Eguafo don’t have any good local role models, they lack inspiration and ambition, and they can’t see how education can be useful. The fact of the matter is that for children living under the tight grip of poverty education is often their best way out. However, since these children don’t have positive role models to ignite a love for learning or to teach them the value of knowledge, they don’t try in school, they don’t aim higher, and they can’t look into the future.

So, he explained, that was why he wanted to become a doctor, so that he could come back and practice in Eguafo (a town with no resident medical practitioners) and be a good role model for other children. It was one of the most beautiful things that I’ve ever heard, and it gave me hope for Emmanuel and the future generations of children at Sankofa Orphanage.

 

Today we spent the morning teaching. I spent the first half of the day working on English and Math with Class 4. Their teachers were there, but I still decided to take the time to walk around and make sure that all the children in the class understood the lesson and were working properly.

The children are starting to become more familiar with me. Day by day they recognize me more, and day by day I get called ‘Oburoni’ less, it’s Madame Asha now.

After a while I got a bit bored so I wandered into the Class 6 classroom, which I found abandoned with a class full of students and no teacher. I wasn’t entirely sure what to do but I knew that I could not leave them like that so I picked up a piece of chalk and a random student’s notebook for a teaching cue and I began to teach.

I taught English for about 45 minutes and then switched, upon the children’s request, to math. They seem to really like math drills and repetition here so we did that for another 20 minutes until the bell rang. Keep in mind that a bell ringing is not like the typical ones in Canada where an alarm goes off from a bell on the wall. In Ghana, a bell ringing is an actual person ringing one bell, and since there are no real walls everyone can hear it.

We came back for lunch, had a nap, went for a walk to the next neighboring town of Braman, and returned home to wait for the new volunteer that was scheduled to arrive that day. It wasn’t long after dinner that we started to notice new shapes heading towards us over the hill. As they approached, it was soon clear to see that there wasn’t just one Oburoni with Francis, but two! That meant that there were going to be two new volunteers joining us! The more the merrier!  They came, settled in, and we began to introduce ourselves and get acquainted.

Their names were Sarah and Cori, they were both girls from the United States, and this was their first time volunteering internationally. Sarah was from Michigan, 26 years old, and studying geriatrics. She is the one who is sleeping in our room on the bottom bunk underneath Jo. Cori is 19, a junior from Maine, and is sleeping in the other room. They both seem like truly incredible women who are going to make amazing additions to our team! It was great to have new people around, and it was wonderful to see Francis again.

We spent the evening trying to be as kind, happy, and as welcoming as possible towards our new friends and coworkers. I cannot wait to see how their unique experiences unfold. It will be really interesting getting to see how they get accustomed to life in Eguafo, and to see them discover the beauty, hope, and life that lives in all that thrives here.

Until tomorrow,

- Madame Asha-

Day 14 – Andra

Today was mostly a good day; I felt like being here was really benefiting the kids this morning, but then later so frustrated by how disadvantaged the kids here are by this education system. Ashley, Jo and I spent the morning teaching a 2.5 hour-long French lesson. I have so much respect for my childhood teachers after that. It was exhausting trying to keep the kids’ attention for ten minutes, but they seemed to actually be retaining the vocabulary we’ve been teaching them. It was exciting to be able to fill in a real need since French was on the kids’ schedule but their teacher can’t actually speak a word. He sat with the class and made sure the kids paid attention since everyone in the room knows the obruni holding a cane is an empty threat. A few songs, chants, and my terrible drawing of the human body for body parts later and the morning was over, hopefully they learned a few things.

Later in the evening it was homework time at the orphanage. Prescilla is 16 years old, she’s been at the orphanage for the past few years. She’s one of two girls to be in the highest grade at the school, class 9. Tonight I had to help her with her math homework, and once again came across the same frustrations I had with Anthony. These kids are presented with so much information every day at school, but they lack the understanding that is so crucial to learning. It took several hours to get through all of her fractions, her attempts at getting me to do her homework for her aside, (but what self-respecting teenager wouldn’t at least make an attempt at that?) she was determined to struggle through every question. I can’t imagine having that level of determination to work and succeed at her age, even now I doubt I have her level of patience.

Being able to sit through her homework with her and actually take the time to go over long division and integers and other concepts she’d clearly only memorized and never really learned made me feel useful, but on the walk home from the kids’ dormitory made me think. These kids have been given an amazing chance, most kids from the villages can’t afford school so shouldn’t be learning anything beyond what their parents can teach them, all the kids from the orphanage should be even worse off. They are the lucky ones, and yet it feels like there is so much lacking, and so much more that can be done.

Day 13 – Michele

I woke up just before 7am this morning. Lizzy had not returned yet so Ashley made “French toast” which was very good I put peanut butter and cocoa powder on it – it tasted like Reeses Pieces (sort of…). For the most part, today was a lazy day. It was overcast all day and began raining early in the afternoon. We worked together to prepare lunch also because Lizzie did not return until the evening. Lizzie’s father was ill at the hospital in Accra, so she went to visit him. She is quite upset. I gave her a hug but the language barrier makes it hard to communicate much else.
In the afternoon, we sat in the dining room and on the porch of the volunteer house making bracelets and doing hair wraps with some of the children. Kwesi and Comfort hung out with us most of the day, and we took turns reading to Kwesi who seemed to be enjoying spending the day with us. We also did a little rain dance photo shoot which was quite fun! When the rain stopped, me and some of the girls headed over to David’s garden on the hill to help with weeding and planting. I wore my rubber boots because it was extremely muddy and had been steadily raining all day. The kids that were helping David all laughed at me and deemed them “motorcycle boots” as everyone else was either in sandals or barefoot. On the bright side, my feet stayed nice and dry! We helped pick impurities out of the garden like rocks and other waste, and plant both lettuce and “black beauties” (what David calls eggplant). The corn has already started to grow which is pretty great news.
I have noticed that they last few days have been cooler and wet, indicating the approach of the rainy seasons which begins fully by early June. According to David, it will start to rain more frequently in the next couple of weeks. Rain is a blessing for David’s two garden projects, and should help speed along the growth of the crops.
After helping in the garden, David showed us the location where he has begun to build a new school. Due to high rent fees on the property of the current school, David decided to build on a piece of property he owns. It is located just over the hill past the one garden, and construction has begun on the classrooms. He plans to build it 3 storeys high with 7 classrooms on each floor, so 21 classrooms total. In the meantime, as building a new school is a long arduous process and David has so many other projects going, he plans to build temporary Bamboo classrooms similar to the current school to be used until construction is complete. As the rent in the children’s centre is quite high, David plans to temporarily move the children into the complete classrooms until he is able to build a new children’s centre. There is much work to be done and David is doing a great job of recruiting volunteers and obtaining funding through various grants. Of course, more assistance would be welcome. When our time in Eguafo is over, the girls and I have discussed keeping ties with David and his projects, helping to fund raise and provide a link in terms of volunteers.

After dinner, the girls and I began working on our dance which we are preparing to present on our last night here. When we arrived, the centre children in combination with children from the town welcomed us through a wonderful drum and dance performance. We want to show them how much we appreciated it, and how much we enjoyed being here through incorporating some of the wonderful dance moves the children have taught us. All the children in Eguafo are wonderful dancers, and David spends a lot of time encouraging their talents through 3 hour practices with a hired dance/drum teacher from Cape Coast. I’m sure it will end up looking rather silly but the children will love it. That’s all for today… I look forward to returning to the school tomorrow morning for the start of a new week!

- Michele

Day 12 – Elyse

 

It was still dark and I could hear the sounds of monkeys approaching.  Someone was walking up the stairs.  They opened the door and whispered “hello.”  It was Fifi, our tour guide!  We woke up 40 feet up over the Kakum National Park rainforest, in a tree house!  It was one of the coolest (meaning coldest and most amazing) places I have ever slept.  All night you could hear the sounds of monkeys and other animals near by, and I mean all night because I couldn’t sleep because it was so cold.  We didn’t have any blankets so by using their resources Ashley and Jo laid mattresses over themselves and the rest of us cuddled together to keep warm.  Fifi woke us up at 4:45 AM to begin our hike.  We got ready and walked to the canopy bridges.  The Canopy walkway was so beautiful and amazing.  There are 7 suspended bridges reaching 30 meters high over the rainforest. We did the walk early before the park opened in hopes that we would see monkeys or elephants.  We didn’t actually see anything but we could hear the monkeys. The sun was just rising and it was a spectacular view!

 

After the walk it was still early so we took a taxi to Hans Cottage.  Hans Cottage is a hotel about 15 minutes from Kakum Park and is known for the many crocodiles that they have.  They had tons of crocodiles in their man-made lake and you even had the chance to be crocodile Dundee and touch one.  I choose to not chance the loss of my arm and to just look at them.   We met up with some volunteers from Canada that we met at Kakum and had breakfast with them at Hans Cottage.

 

From Hand Cottage we took a taxi to Cape Coast where we wandered the market to search for some fabric and some fruit to bring back.  After we found our fabric we found a taxi to take us back to Eguafo.  We told the driver Eguafo and he said he knew where it was.  After about 5 minutes into the ride we discovered that he had no idea where Eguafo was and even after being in Ghana for almost two weeks, we were unable to offer any directions.  He stopped many times asking for directions and we hoped that they were pointing us in the right direction.  This seemed to be a frequent problem with the taxi drivers in Ghana. We finally made it back to Eguafo and Lizzie had lunch ready for us.  She also told us that her dad was very sick and she wanted to go visit him in the hospital but couldn’t afford it.  She needed 12 Cedi to get to the hospital and back.  As a group, we decided to help her to go see her dad.  She left for the night and left us to fend for ourselves.  Andra brought her culinary skills and made us spaghetti!

 

It was very heart breaking when Lizzie told us that she couldn’t afford the 12 Cedi to go visit her dad is the hospital.  12 Cedi is about $7 US, which most of us could afford without it breaking the bank.  I don’t think she makes a lot working for VCO.  I believe she is just provided with her basic necessities.  For many of us, $7 is just pocket money, but for Lizzie it may have been a long time worth of savings.

 

After dinner we opened up Jo and Kristy’s string that they brought and brought it over to the centre to make bracelets with the kids.  Most of the kids were having a meeting with David so we sat with one of the boys Emmanuel, and talked and made bracelets with him.  Emmanuel is an amazing young boy.  He calls himself “Dr. Creamy” because he loves ice cream and wants to become a doctor.  He attends to one of the government schools right now and is in class 8.  He isn’t at the centre a lot right now because he has been living with his grandma but we have met him a few times. He wants to be a role model for other kids and to become a doctor.  He knows that kids in Eguafo don’t have a lot of good role models and that is why they are not motivated to do well in school.  He also doesn’t have high hopes in becoming a doctor because he knows the only way he can go is if he gets sponsored but then he also needs books and other supplies.   He’s also an amazing dancer!

 

We didn’t stay at the centre too long because we were exhausted from the weekend.  So we headed back to our house early and went to bed.  Today was such an amazing experience and it really made me think about how privileged we are and appreciate these incredible experiences that we are able to have.  It was great to be able to see other parts of Ghana but it was also great to be back in Eguafo with the all the kids (and the goats)!

 

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.