On Thursday May 29th, I left from Orlando to Boston where I then caught a flight to Rome and finally to Accra (we stopped in Lagos, Nigeria but didn’t get off the plane). Accra is the capital of Ghana and is very large and heavily populated. Richard from HCDP picked us up from Kotoka Airport where we then stayed a night in Accra and left to Fodome Ahor the next morning. Fodome is about a 5 hour drive from Accra, but Richard said it was maybe 2.5 hours. Also, he said we would be leaving at 7AM when we actually ended up leaving at 9AM. Time does not exist. However, it’s quite refreshing to live without a watch! In Fodome, we came to a guesthouse where a team from William and Mary College were ending their service trip. They were a team of 14 from Virginia who had began a community development project to build a communal toilet. Their official name is SPIMA and they have been coming every year for 4 years to help this village. In Fodome Ahor, we were greeted by the elders and chief of the town with a welcoming/leaving ceremony. Richard surprised us with beautiful woven scarfs with the words “HCDP Ghana & EdGE” embroidered amongst garnet and gold. The women of the village made us bracelets with handmade beads in which we were given by the Queen Mother. Then we danced the “borbor” for a few hours, which is essentially shuffling in a circle around some guys playing drums. It was very entertaining though!
Finally, the three of us (Cole, Taylor, and myself) were ready to start our own project in a new village. We finally drove 2 hours to get to Ho- the capital of the Volta region. Ho is a large city similar to Accra, yet cleaner and greener. Once there, we separated from the other team and headed to Adaklu Anfoe. Adaklu is the district and Anfoe is the village. Adaklu Waya is the district capital ten minutes from Anfoe where we will be presenting our results to the district assembly at the end of our adventure. Fodome and Adaklu districts are all in the Volta region where the tribal language Ewe is spoken. We are gradually learning this language because the villagers don’t speak too much English and its fun to see them get a kick out of us attempting to pronounce some of the words. I’m getting used to the goats and chickens roaming around everywhere and waking us up at 5AM, but the bucket showers are difficult and, unfortunately, not daily. The villagers don’t care, though! To them, I am a “yevo” or a “white person” and they enjoy seeing me and practicing their English along with teaching us how to dance and sing anyways!