This week has sped by and it’s been a colorful, joyful and exhilarating ride. I have to admit, I didn’t have any set expectations for this trip. I spotted a Facebook post from Heather asking for volunteers to help teach a program in Ghana and I thought, Africa, I can teach, I’m going.
From the moment I arrived, I am almost certain I’ve had a smile on my face. The hospitality of the Ghanaians is heart warming. From Accra to Akatsi, people have literally been welcoming me everywhere, even when I accidentally walk into their front yards while trying to navigate back to the Sefe house. The RHC team, US and Akatsi based, have made me feel like a real member of the group and I’ve relished every opportunity, from riding trotros to performing mini aerobic sessions as a last ditch effort to revive the class and let’s not forget drinking Ghanaian lager in a bar with no lights.
The greatest moments are those had at the teaching site. The Kekeli Women are inspiring not only in the work they do for their communities but also for their continued dedication and determination to learn and grow as a team. They support each other and clearly want to foster a healthier community. They achieve this by listening to their communities without judgement while continuing to educate. We refer to each other as sisters and it honestly does feel like family.
Today I was fortunate to hear the personal stories and struggles that some of the women faced as we conducted small group sessions. I was amazed to hear tales of cholera outbreak stabilization, family planning being adopted by young men and the confidence that these women have gained from the program. They revealed that their presence has grown and that they’re proud to be the first contacted in cases of labour and delivery, injury or sickness. Their knowledge and work has had a huge impact that will only continue to grow.
I’ll be reluctant to leave Akatsi this weekend but I’m excited to see how these women progress. We’ve formed a bond and I want to see them succeed in their aims of gaining more knowledge and having an even greater impact in their communities. These women are true agents of change. As for the RHC team, they’re humble in their achievements and I am so grateful for this opportunity and look forward to continuing to support and build on these great friendships.
Over and out!
– Kirsten Moore