Ahk Pe

How could people be so….Giving! For people who barely have anything, they always seem to give even when they don’t have. Since I have been in Tafi I have received nothing but gifts. You may be thinking materialistic, but I’m talking about love, humility and even words of encouragement. They believe that me along with everyone here has done so much for them, when I think it’s the other way around. I feel as if I’m forever indebted to them, they have left a imprint on me that I will forever live with…. This one student here her name is KayKay, when I tell you she is such a beautiful spirit, she’s respectful and very bright, she’s my favorite. I’m not sure if it’s because she reminds me so much of myself when I was younger or she’s just that awesome. I think it’s a combination of both. The other day she told me that she would follow me to America. When she said that I started to tear up, I’m not sure if it’s because it was emotional or if it was because I knew I couldn’t take her even if I wanted to. I guess that’s just the way the cookie crumbles. ūüėĒ. Although I know I can’t take her I will never forget her she’s taught me so many dances, maybe when I get back I can teach you all a few moves or two… If you want to check out some moves il post a video below. I hope everyone’s doing well.

Sex EDucation

(Cues IceCube-Today Was a Good Day) I think this had to be my best experience thus far in Africa, educating girls in class 3-6 about sex, the reproductive system and also how to properly take care of ones self during their menstrual cycle. The children were very appreciative for this class, not only were they appreciative but so was I. They taught me things that you don’t learn about in Sex Ed in school. Did you know that, woman who can not afford sanitary pads use a piece if cloth as a substitute ??? I thought that was so amazing. One thing I found very interesting when talking to a lot of older woman in the village they say that some of these girls have sex for the first time and end up pregnant because they have not been properly educated beforehand. Also, some men in the village who have cars and/ or motorbikes use these things to lower the young girls to come with them ¬†for a ride home or food for their families in exchange for sex. Moving forward I have been volunteering a lot at the clinic and it is really fun, it kind of sparked a interest that I never had before. I can honestly say that after this experience working there, I have a even greater appreciation for those who are either already in the healthcare profession or aspiring to become apart. I hope everyone is having a great time at their orgs.

The Big Move

I am loving Tafi Atome! The people here are so welcoming and the kids here are even friendlier! Now I know you may be asking yourself why am I all the way in Tafi??? Well it turns out that my organization was a complete scam. Yup you read it right. A scam. After analyzing the whole situation and putting bits and pieces together I was able to realize that I was being bamboozled. Many people have asked me, how do you continue to have a positive attitude?? And my response is always ¬†” it’s nothing but God” I really can say that this trip to Africa has been nothing but a learning experience, no matter how much I have undergone in this period of time, I do know that I would not have been able to keep up the good fight without the man above. None the less am now at a new organization with Tati,Phoenix,Kelly and Hannah. These girls are nothing short of amazing. After giving them a call, when searching for a new organization, they all offered me kind words of encouragement and even helped me get in contact with their host organization to try and get in. They have been nothing but helpful and I can’t be nothing but THANKFUL for them.

Reflection

I have to admit, week after week it all becomes so much easier to live life in Ghana. I remember Night 1 I cried when I got here and now nothing phases me anymore I guess that’s what you call acculturation. This week I had the opportunity to travel to the coast and visit Kakum National Park, The Elmina Castle and ¬†Cape Coast Castle. The city of Ghana is filled with so much history it’s mind blowing. I told my boyfriend that after visiting the castles I feel like I learned more about the slave trade than I have in any history class I have taken. Btw, at Cape Coast I ran into a few global scholars as well. It was great seeing familiar faces especially people that I knew… Moving forward I think I may be changing the topic of my analysis paper, I think my experiences here have sparked a interest in …..( I think I will leave you all on a cliff hanger there). Trust me I think it will be a very good topic. Just yesterday I had my first marriage proposal, it was quite interesting. I tried to say no, but he continued to give me his life story. It was really funny, even after saying I had a boyfriend it still didn’t change the dynamics of the conversation. After about 15 of saying no my friend finally bailed me out. Thank God she came to the rescue.¬†

Grateful

Anxious, persistent,nervous, you name it I was feeling it. My first day of teaching had arrived, or so I thought. Before my alarm could wake me up for school, I was awaken by the rain drops on the zinc roof that covered my room. Whenever it rains at school it means that there is no school due to flooding and slippery mud. Now I know your thinking, rain or shine we still go to school, RIGHT?? Well that’s not the case here, at GGYN since school is kept outside under the mango trees, that doesn’t bare any mangoes, it is impossible to teach in such a ¬†condition. So I crawled back under my sheet and slept for about another hour until I was awaken by the roosters. Later that day we decided to take a adventure to the mall, I was so amazed as to how cheap things were in comparison to the states. I bought a few things including a snicker bar which cost me about .50, yup you read it right a whole .50 cents. I can def get use to this life. After leaving the mall we headed back home because we had spent about a good four hours there just talking and goofing off. Moving forward to Monday I was able to teach my first class. Might I add that I have nothing but more respect for teachers now than I ever did before. The students required so much that I didn’t think I would be able to give them. Some students were in class 4 when they should have been in class 2. There reading comprehension was below their grade level. This really gave me a sense of not only humility but also a greater appreciation for what I have in life. ¬†Prior to me and the other volunteers getting here these students were out of school for five weeks, not because of the rain but because of a lack of funds to pay teachers to help them further their education. After hearing this, I put on my thinking cap and went to scratch, assessing each kid based on their own individual needs. This allowed me to correctly place the students in there corresponding grade level based on my assessment. I can tell these next month and a half is going to be nothing shy of great.¬†

Culture Shock in 5.4.3.2.1

Welcome to GHANA! Those were the first words I heard as I stepped off the plane. The scenery was beautiful, just what I imagined when I thought about my trip to Ghana. As I went through customs, claimed my baggage and got them cleared, my real journey was about to begin…. I was welcomed by three individuals, 2 from the UK, Heather and Tom and 1 Ghanaian resident Joshua who is the IT guy for GGYN. It felt like something in a movie because i told Heather a code word for me to identify them as the individuals who are going to pick me up. Before I could even look her dead in the eye she shouts out Red, because she seen me communicating with someone else and thought they were trying to take me. It was hilarious. Moving forward as we arrived at my host family house we dropped off my bag and quickly left to go and watch Ghana and Portugal play. This game was intense, this is where I first heard the local African dialect Ewe and Twe. ¬†The place was swarming with the two different languages but yet they were able to understand each other. I felt bad for the Ghanaians that day because they had hope their team would win, but unfortunately both them and Portugal were kicked out of the World Cup. We then went to the local cafe where I got to see my family and talk to them for a little bit. As soon as I got on FaceTime withy mom, and she said ” Hi my baby” I completely lost it. I tried to hold back the tears but I couldn’t, this was the first time that I was away from home and my parents were not in a 7 hour radius from me. No boyfriend, no friends, no family, it was all kicking in. I tried to pull myself together before I spoke to my dad but it only lasted for about a good minute and then the waterworks started. I cried even harder this time, as I looked in my dad’s eyes I could see he looked like he missed me as if I was gone for good and he was never going to see me again. He began to ask me if I was ok, if I wanted to come home, no matter what he was behind me, at first I contemplated the thought to come home and then I thought to myself,NO. I’m not weak. If I run from this obstacle I will let everything in life defeat me, I wasn’t ready to throw in the towel that easy. When I talked to Heather she said she felt homesick the first three nights here, but she got over it . So I’m taking her advice by taking it day by day and embracing this lifestyle bits and pieces at a time, and it’s worked. I’m glad I have someone here to relate to she has really made these first couple a days something worth writing about.