All students are through airport security and on their way home!
Last Day at Mancona
Today was day 20 of this GLA experience. It was also the last day at the Mancona International School. I never knew it was so hard saying goodbye to kids. Today we woke up at around 7am to prepare and eat breakfast. The students at the Mancona International School put on a dance show for us and we danced in return. Carmen made a remix of “Cupid Shuffle”, “Wobble”, and “Gas Pedal.” She taught us the dance to each of the songs. The kids all seemed really down as if they knew that it was our last day there even without telling them. The GLA members bonded with the students of the school really well and it was just so hard to say goodbye already. It felt like we’ve just arrived in Ghana a few days ago. We had to say goodbye right after we all got comfortable with the kids.
After saying our goodbyes, we came back to the home base to eat lunch together for the very last time as a group. Ivanna and Carmen are leaving at 5am in the morning on Friday because they have a flight to another country. After lunch, everyone went to their rooms to go pack and organize their donations and clothes. After that, we went to the park for the very last time and say our goodbyes. Jevons and I (Phillip) both bought snacks for the kids in the town. We gave them out to all the kids on the way to the park. After spending 2 hours at the park with the kid, we came back home to eat dinner that was specially prepared for us, our very last dinner. Henry came and gave us a talk and brought in all the staffs. Kate made some certificates for all the staffs, each with their own specialties. We ate dinner, talked and laughed. I feel like we’ve all bonded sooo well. We came a long way since the first night in Ghana. Then, after dinner, we watched a slideshow and received certificates hand made by Kate. The fact that she hand made the certificates made it really special. Then, we played a spider web activity. That really just sums up our night our very last night together. Playing and listening to music until it’s time to sleep. It’s been an amazing trip with this group of people. Felt like we’re a big family!
The End is Near
Today, we woke up bright and early at 7:00 am and had tom brown and a Ghanaian version of french toast. We then left for service at Mancona International School and taught our classes for the last time since tomorrow we are having a going away celebration. We left early from Mancona and went to Edmon Creche Nursery and visited the little kiddies for the last time. They awarded us with certificates for all our hard work there, and we thanked them for letting us help them out. After the nursery, we headed to the ever so busy market, and bought a variety of items. We returned home and had a delicious lunch consisting of fufu (raw cassava dough), goat stew, rice, and a variety of fruit. Our amount of exhaustion reached its limit after lunch due to the running around all morning and the hearty lunch, so we decided it was time for a midday nap. After our “siestas”, as Isa would call them, we were visited by three hair braiders and had parts of our hair braided. Then we had yams, wieners, and avocado for dinner. And to end the evening, we all gathered around a bonfire to spend our second to last evening with each other relaxing, and remembering the amazing times we had together these past three weeks.
With an early wakeup today, the students went to a village nearby and saw how clay pots were made. The locals showed us all the steps in the making of the pots, from how to mold them and later firing them so they could be sold at the market. After getting the tour of the village, the chief from there talked with us for a while. We returned to home base wanting to make clay pots and waited until lunchtime when a current Peace Corps Volunteer came to visit. Joseph, the volunteer, shared stories about his experience so far and answered various questions. He has been living here for a year and half and when his two volunteer years end, he’s planning to extend for a whole other year. His life here is not easy, with no electricity, water, or phone signal, but he said he has really enjoyed the time he has served here and doesn’t even need those things we think of as “needs”. After dinner our great director, Kate, showed us a beautiful and very interesting documentary about the lost boys of Sudan, “God Grew Tired of Us”. Since we had rented the projector, we decided to watch “P.S. I love You” after the documentary, leaving some of us teary-eyed and ready for bed.
Last Day at Mancona International School
We started off the day waking up at 7am to a lovely toast, oatmeal-like pudding, and very sweet juicy fruit. Around 7:30, we left for our last day of building at Mancona International School. We put in a lot of work and finished off with a total of 29 bricks. When we finished with the bricks, we helped out with their arts and crafts day and made it into a class vs. class competition. After leaving the school we went to the nursery to help with the little kids, we fed them, bathed them, and finally clothed them. After saying goodbye to a the little kids, we went back to the home base to eat our special lunch, special because it was Olivia’s birthday . Later on in the day we visited our host families for the last time. We talked about what America is like, what Ghana is like, and what they want to do when they grow up.
Then, we went to the park for a little bit to play with all the kids together. Around 6pm, we had to come back for dinner and we ate a hearty, homemade meal. Then, we took a walk (just for Olivia) to a 107-year-old women’s house in the village. The women talked about dipo, among other things she has seen in her long life. We came home around 8:30 to take showers, relax, and then we went to a beautiful sleep at 10:30.
A Relaxing Day
On our last Sunday in Ghana, we got to relax! We slept in until 8, although most of us woke up early anyways. Breakfast was multigrain oatmeal, eggs, and bread (which we all spread lots of chocolate on). We had a few hours before leaving, and almost everyone buried themselves in their books, curling up on the comfy furniture in the living room. At 10, we piled into the van and headed to Sajuna Beach Club for the second time since we’ve been here. It wasn’t at all crowded because of a little rain and most of the locals were at church. Driving up to the club, you quickly forget the dusty streets and straw houses just down the street. It’s a beachgoer’s paradise with two pools, a volleyball court, a restaurant, and even canoeing! Only the palm trees give away the fact we are still in Ghana. Many of us immediately began an intense volleyball game with the locals, while others settled under a cabana to read and enjoy the free time. The hours quickly passed as we ate, used the rowboats (which proved to be a struggle because we went against the current), and made new friends.
At three, we packed up and drove to the Nectar House Orphanage. The kids remembered us from last time and smiled as we walked in. This time, we brought donations, ranging from sidewalk chalk to badminton rackets to coloring books to earrings. The children got so excited as we handed the items out. Jevons used the sidewalk chalk to draw ‘Nectar House’ in unique lettering on the side of the building, which the children proceeded to decorate with hearts and smiley faces. After a couple hours of engaging with the kids, we said our goodbyes and headed back to the home base. It was already 6 pm, so we jumped right into dinner. Afterwards, Kate brought everyone together and divided us into two groups of five. Each group got a bag of various household items and was told only one sentence: to build the tallest tower using only those items. The activity quickly became an intense competition – I ended up scaling a ladder outside, as my group tried to make the ‘highest’ tower. However, no matter how creative our ideas, Kate still said we hadn’t built the tallest tower! It was really comical to watch everyone become frustrated as Kate repeated the same sentence: “You all – build the tallest tower”. Eventually, we learned that the point of the exercise was to show that we had assumed the ‘groups’ were teams, and that we had to compete. We could have worked together to build the tallest tower! We thought about what this says about our culture. Then we sat in a circle and paired up. We interviewed each other and identified the problems we would like to fix in Ghana or in our communities. It was a thoughtful discussion, despite a few hilarious laughing outbursts which had Audrey and Carmen in hysterics! Today was a much-deserved fun and relaxing day, a perfect lead-in to our last week in Ghana.
Preparing for Our Last Days
Hello everyone! Our day today started early in the morning. We woke up at 6am and had a quick breakfast. Then, we headed out to the first established cocoa farm in Ghana. We had the chance to look at the cocoa trees and learn how cocoa beans are fermented. Also, we had the chance to taste raw cocoa beans, which tasted like mango. After, we hiked to Boti Falls to see a rock called “umbrella” and a beautiful waterfall. As soon as we finished, we ate lunch at the Boti Falls resting area and headed back to the home base. At dinnertime, we ate an extremely spicy but delicious pasta. To wrap up our evening, we watched a movie and talked about the rest of our final week here in Ghana. So far the journey has been extraordinary and we are prepared to make the best out of these last days together.
– Ivanna Lopez
Service & Learning
Today was a relaxed day of service and learning. We began the day by eating a breakfast of tom brown and toast, and then headed to the service site for some fun-filled games. The kids either spent their time at the school building bricks or participating in a variety of competitions against the students of the school. These games included volleyball, spoon racing, bottle filling, and charades. It was a nice way for the students and GLA group to take a break and bond as they got some time off of classes. After school, the group headed back to home base for lunch and some down time until 3:00pm, when director Kate lead an activity on what the students planned to do with what they learned upon arriving back to their hometowns. Once the activity was finished, several kids headed to the park and played with the kids, while others enjoyed down time. A dinner of yams, sausage, mango, and cake was served at 6pm, followed by a guest speaker who discussed the Dipo custom of the Krobo culture. Unique to Krobo, the Dipo was explained by Henry’s aunt as a large ceremony in which young girls were initiated into womanhood through a series of trainings and traditions. It was interesting to learn about the history of this custom as well as the realization that the cultures and traditions for marriage of the USA and Krobo are drastically different. After the meeting, the students headed to their rooms to read or enjoy some time to rest before going to sleep. Already two weeks into the trip and it feels as if we have been here for two days. One week to go before we leave this amazing place and head home to you all!
Service and the Market
Today was a typical day for the students from GLA. We woke up at 7am and we had breakfast right after that, bread and pudding, delicious!! After breakfast, the car was waiting for us to go the school. Some people worked on the construction section where every day we do brick building and the other people taught in the classes. We built 31 bricks!! After teaching we went to the house where we had lunch. After lunch, we cleaned our underwear by hand, it was the first time for all of us, it was really interesting but also really hard and exhausting. At 3pm, we went to the bead market where we thought that it was going to be really big but it turned out to be a 3 store market. So we all thought that we were going to be there for 15 minutes but in the end we stayed for 1 hour. After the market, we were supposed to go to the park to see the kids but it started to rain a lot so we decided to stay home and make bracelets for the kids. Un saludo a todos de los alumnos de GLA.
The Adventures Continue…
Today is day 12 here in Odumase-Krobo, Ghana. Last night it rained very hard with strong winds that could be heard loudly when they hit the window. I was woken at 4am because of these noises and I am not a light sleeper. After an hour and a half, it calmed down a little and I was able to go back to sleep, knowing I had to wake up at 7 am. As leader of the day, I had to wake everyone up and had set up my alarm at 6:59, as late as I could, and I am not going to lie when I say that it took a lot of willpower to not click snooze and just go back to sleep. When we woke up it was still raining a little so, as a team, we decided to not go to school and instead go to the same nursery we went to yesterday but for a longer time. Thankfully, the kids didn’t cry as much as they did yesterday, the teachers there said they were not used to our skin color. At the nursery we had the opportunity to play with the adorable toddlers and act like parents for a while, feeding them, changing their clothes and even changing the diapers. So far, it has been a great experience at the school and at the nursery. Not many people get the opportunity to be able to travel to a developing country and get to work with kids. Thanks to this wonderful experience I know I definitely see myself working with children in my future and know they are something I could never live without. The children are a motivation for all of us to wake up early and leave the house with smiles, knowing it will always be a good day when they are around.
After returning from the nursery we had lunch, took a break and then went to the market. Every Wednesday and Saturday is a market day here in Odumase-Krobo and there is no day when things are calm in the market. With the various strange smells and shouts of street vendors mixing it is not always a good time at the market, however, one always leaves with great items that were bought at excellent prices. A common item that is sold and bought at the market is fabric, which we later took to a seamstress to get different types of clothes made. After a crazy market day and a long time spent at the seamstress, we got back to home base just in time for dinner!
Things have completely changed since the first day, when it was all very awkward and silent, to today, where we don’t stop talking from the moment we wake up until bedtime. It is always a long, but fun, day in Ghana that somehow goes by very fast. We have been bonding like a true family (we are currently all watching a movie together, our new hobby) and enjoying everyday as if it was our last. Nine more days to go…
Mancona International School
Hello family and friends! My name is Ivanna Lopez and I just wanted to start this blog by saying that today was just another day full of adventure, learning experiences, and unforgettable moments. We started the day at 7 A.M. and ate a quick and delicious breakfast called Tom Brown. We then headed for the Mancona International School to teach kids and build bricks. We all decided that half of us would be building bricks and the other half would teach. Just as the past days, our goal was to make 24 to 30 bricks a day. Today we were able to complete 31 quality bricks! Around 12 P.M., we skipped our typical lunch hour to go to a nursery to help feed children, wash dishes, change them into clean clothes, and have fun with them. When we first arrived, the kids were so scared of us that if we got near them they would cry their eyes out! After a while, the kids started to gain our trust and started to play with us and watch movies. After that, we came home, ate lunch, and took small naps. After our wonderful director woke us up, we went to visit our host families and interacted with their entire family. Then, we headed back home to eat diner and try out the outfits that we got made. And to wrap up our day, we did an activity that taught us that the word “leadership” is overrated. We tend to see leaders as politicians, celebrities, and big organizations and we fail to see ourselves as leaders. And that even though we think we can’t make a change, as of right now, we are making a change to individuals, and that is changing their worlds completely.
Krobo Girls School
The kids woke up bright and early at 7am and ate a hearty breakfast of toast and rice pudding. After preparing for service and applying loads of bug spray, everyone loading into the van and headed to the school to begin their jobs of either working or teaching various grade levels. Half of the group went and worked on brick building together (and I might add set the record of 31 bricks) and the other half of the group taught individually in different grades throughout the school. Once the brick builders were through two bags of cement, they sat down and talked to the head of the school, Vincent. He asked the students of their impressions on the school, both good and bad, in search for ways to improve the school and himself as the leader of it. Also in this discussion, he told the students about the history of the school and how his parents initially founded it, only for him to eventually come back and take over in their place. The talk was a good opportunity for everyone to reflect on their first week working in the school.
Once the school service work was complete and everyone was ready for lunch, the group gathered back in the van and headed home for lunch. Feeling tired from the morning, the kids wanted nothing but to nap and rest, but right after lunch prompted a trip to Krobo Girls School in which they sat in on various classes of their choosing and got a feel for the school environment that the girls who attend the school experience everyday. The time at the school also allowed for the students to think about the similiarities and differences in their own schools at home versus the school life in the boarding school. Many students agreed that the school was rigorous in academics, but the students seemed happy and very curious of the groups’ home lives in America. The classes eventually ended and the group met back at a central location on campus and walked back to home base located on the edge of campus. There, everyone finally enjoyed the down time they wanted and either read, napped, or made friendship bracelets in the living room together. Although the routine for the afternoon generally consists of a visit to the park, it was nice to have a rest day and take some time to be mellow.
At 6pm, it was time for pasta and chicken, which the kids happily devoured after a long day of service. The discussion at dinner consisted of reflection on the day at Krobo Girl’s School and observations that the kids had on campus. Following dinner was a fun game that involved everyone in the group, and then the entire house met outside to discuss the plan for the week and the success of the preceding week. Today was fun and filled with a ton of work, but nevertheless a great day!
Nectar Home Orphanage
Today, along with every other day, was amazing! More so relaxing than work, but nevertheless equally amazing. As leader of the day I got to wake up everyone an hour and a half late, so at 8:30am, even though most everyone was up, but very unwilling to get out of bed. We started our day with traditional Ghanaian foods for breakfast as well as a “family” talk of what our day entailed. Later, we completed our first task of the day which was cooking a type of bean stew and sweet plantains for a local orphanage. The cooking staff obviously helped us out because we would have probably been lost without them. I don’t think any of us realized how much work was put into each of our meals until we actually had the chance to make it ourselves.
About two hours later we finally hit the road and went to the Nectar Home Orphanage. We were greeted with “Hellos”, “Welcomes”, and many, many smiles. These kids, boys and girls, ranged from about 2 or 3 years old to 16 or 17 years old. We had the chance to serve them the food and many more smiles came from them because it actually tasted good! After lunch we played football (soccer), racquetball, volleyball, and a local dance game they’ve taught us as we’ve been here. The kids had so much fun and many laughs with us and it just felt like we were with family, playing games, eating food, and conversing the whole time. We stayed there a good and very fun three or so hours, and then went home. When we got home we did something we normally didn’t do… We read for a good two hours or at least until dinner started, it was very educational.
Dinner started at six, and we had a very big, and beautiful dinner. We had more traditional Ghanaian food (a little surprise that the rice was pink), along with very juicy, sweet fruit. After dinner, our local GLA director, Henry, came to the living room in a Ghanaian robe and told us traditional Ghanaian myths, they were very interesting and played into the things we had seen in Ghana very well. We just finished story time as I’m writing this now, and we might be watching a movie or we could be reading more books… 😉
We woke up at 5:00 AM for a surprise excursion that Kate had for us. We had a really light breakfast of eggs and bread and were on the road by 6. We crossed the Volta river with a boat where the cars could get on too. After 4 hours of the bumpy roads we got to our destination: a monkey sanctuary! In the beginning, we didn’t find any monkeys but the tour guide made some weird noise with his mouth, getting the monkey’s attention. We were all given bananas so the monkeys could eat them out of our hands. The sanctuary was like a jungle, it had really weird species. We saw centipedes and butterflies along the way. Finally, we got the monkeys to take the bananas and peel them out of our hands. It was so cute! After the sanctuary, we went to a beach resort, where we finally ate a late lunch, swam in the pool, and played volleyball. It was more fun than we expected, and we had a great time. It was really relaxing. We got back home at 6 PM and showered, played cards, and did other activities. Then we had a late dinner at 7:30 of noodles and chicken. Because we were all exhausted from the long day, after dinner we watched a movie and went to bed early. Today was exciting and a good start to the weekend. Un saludo, los alumnos the GLA.
Getting Ready for the Weekend
After waking up bright and early at 7am, we all sat down and ate a hearty breakfast of tom brown (a local porridge), toast, and oranges. We then went to the local school and played with the kids since it was game day. While some of us played volleyball, others started working on building bricks for the IT center. First, we carried the cement and sand to the school enclosure. Next, we mixed the cement and sand and added water. Then we put the cement mixture into the brick mold and packed it in. Last we popped the bricks out of the mold and voila, a new brick! After making 24 bricks, we were all exhausted and decided to leave the school and come home for an early lunch. For lunch, we had spicy rice with chicken, vegetables, and a variety of fruit. We relaxed for a few ours after lunch and caught up on our much needed beauty sleep.
Around 3pm, we left our house and walked to Krobo girls, the local senior high school located right next to our house. We went into the auditorium, watched some of the girls perform local dances, and even learned a few dance moves ourselves. Some of the students met a South African student who had transfered to the school recently, while others went back to the home. At 6pm, we had a delicous dinner of chicken in tomato sauce, sweet rice, pineapple, mango, and sugar cane. Then we learned about a surprise trip we are taking tomorrow. We just lounged around for the rest of the night and played cards or made friendship bracelets since we have to wake up early for our trip tomorrow.
A Little Bit of Everything
July 10th our sixth day in Ghana! It’s hard to believe we have been here for almost a week. Today incorporated a little bit of everything from service to cultural experience to leadership skills, which is what makes this experience incredibly well-rounded. As leader of the day, I knocked on everyone’s doors at 7 am and received many groggy groans in return (we were up late last night)! After a quick breakfast of perfectly ripe mangoes and other local food, we piled into the van and drove through the bustling village to the school, swerving around potholes and eagerly waving at every single Ghanaian on the street. Our waves are always received with a broad smile and a welcoming wave.
We arrived at the school and went straight to work in our assigned classrooms. By now, we have all settled in to the daunting task of standing in front of a class of about 20 students and attempting to communicate topics ranging from fruit to math to physics! The school is a beautiful place. If you’re picturing a large building with windows, a cafeteria, and a gym, think again. Each classroom is so simple: lots of concrete, no doors, and a roof. This does have its absolute beauty which is provided by the grinning children who only want one thing: to learn. As you can imagine, this is very different from America where we hear “I hate school!” on the daily. I taught the bright third graders English, more specifically adverbs and the future tense. I have learned that the most effective way to teach is to do a few problems on the board and then finish with songs and rhymes: I used my less than perfect singing skills to ingrain: “adverbs come after, after, after the verb!” into many little brains. After four hours at the school (which really felt like 30 minutes to me), we said our goodbyes to the glorious kids and went back to the home base for a much needed lunch. We owe our strength to Gloria, the fabulous cook here who keeps us healthy with a variety of local foods.
After lunch, we sat around in the living room to relax. To some, that meant an intense card game, and to others, it meant making intricate friendship bracelets around the table. We have such a dynamic group of students. One could walk into the home base and find Ivanna shrieking in Spanish, Leah admiring her bracelets, or Audrey making fun of Phillip! At two o’clock, a local craftsman came to the home base for a bit of cultural experience. He showed up with two bags bulging with handcrafted items. Out came salad bowls with meaningful carvings, cow bone earrings, hand sewn backpacks, beaded elephants, etc. The ten of us gatherered around and watched in awe as he layed out the items. I believe the craftsman was supposed to go through each item and tell how it was made and what it meant but after about two minutes, Papa Henry let us know we would be able to buy items at the end. It was like a swarm of bees as some of us ran to our rooms to grab money. So much for the lesson! But in the end, we learned a lot. Each of us bought at least three items for friends and family and the local man let us know which symbol inscribed on the crafts meant love, faith, or hope. This made us appreciate the creativity of Ghanian culture even more. By four o’clock we were all satisfied with our newly bought memoirs, and noticed the kids from the park running up the street. They wanted us to come play, as usual! So off we went to put on our exercise clothes, and grab our cameras for the park. The children came running when they saw us, and an immediate game of soccer was started, as well as a dance circle. I love to watch the cross- cultural occurrences in the park the kids teach us local dances, and we teach them popular songs from America.
After the park, we had a very filling dinner and then did fun activities as a group. I led a game on the porch called ‘Indian Chief’ that had us all laughing. We went inside, and Kate set up a thoughtful activity. First, we talked about the stereotypes we had of Africa before arriving. Most had to do with poverty, danger, and sad people we see on “give Africa aid” commercials. Then we watched a TED talk on stereotypes, and how people tend to only hear “one story” about a place, creating an inaccurate perception of a culture, country, or even continent. We thought about how we can change the fact that negative images come to mind when our friends and family hear the word Africa. These discussions are like the glue to the experience they remind us that we are here, in Africa, making a difference in many ways. Today was just another day in this captivating country, yet it held a little bit of every experience one could wish to have.
A Magnificent Day!
During this magnificent day in Ghana, we were able to dabble in many new experiences. We first started off our day by teaching at the nearby school. I was assigned an English and ICT lesson to teach. After teaching both lessons back to back, I understand that a teacher’s job can be rather daunting and extremely tiring, but it is also forgiving. The children in Ghana are much different than that of the United States, firstly that they are extremely diligent. They know the importance of respect, education and the luxury of being able to attend school. In the United States, school is viewed in a different perspective such that school seems more “forced” than it is a “gift”. I believe in order for children and teens in United States to truly start appreciating school, they must understand that learning is a luxury not a punishment. During the second half of the day, we were able to go to the market. The market was bustling with life and energy. There were stores stacked right next to each other, each selling an array of items from food all the way to clothing. Unlike shopping in any other country, a smile and a kind gesture goes a long way. Rather than doing it only for the money, friendship is also key in communities such as these. Ghana is a place where relationships come before the money. When we shopped, we attempted to be as nice as possible, alongside with some haggling(which is a cultural norm in Ghana). We were able to get around this large location with the help of the sellers themselves. In a market such as this, everyone was very integrated with one another.
Finally, we were able to aquire our Krobo names. This was a huge honor which required a large ceremony in order for us to attain the names. Everyone was required to dress up in different patterns along with face paint so that we were deeply consumed in the Ghanaian culture. My Krobo name was known as Nartey (NaTe). Each name has a different meaning according to the birth order of one’s siblings and their birth date. Ghana is truly a wonderful place full of life and very ambivalent people. I am sure that the days to come will be just as great as this one!
Volunteering & Leadership
Hi everyone! My name is Phillip Zheng and I was the leader of the day for the GLA experience in Ghana. As a leader of the day I had to take care of passing the tasks of the day from my adviser to my fellow high school students along this trip with me. The tasks of today were to wake up at 7am for breakfast, after that, we left to volunteer at the local school for the students. We each were given books based on what grade we’re teaching. We were told to plan a lesson the night before so we were given the opportunity to teach the class for half the day. The experience was very informative. It made me realize as a student myself that it’s challenging to be a teacher. Standing for hours in the heat while trying to get the kids to pay attention are just some hardships being a teacher. The kids in the particular school have lots of potential. The classes aren’t separated by ages but by what age they had started to attend school. In my particular class it ranged from ages 9 to 15. After the school, we went home to eat lunch and after lunch we were taught some of the basics of the Krobo language, like greetings and manners. Then we were given a time to relax and prepare for our visit to your next door neighbor, which was the Krobo Girls Senior High School. The school was very well set up. Well, that was basically the last event of our 4th day in Odumase Krobo, Ghana. This was a really nice way to experience and put my leadership skills to practice.
We woke up a little later than we normally will, ate breakfast, had our orientation and took a group photo. Then, we took a long walk around the village and got to see a lot of the people who live here. After this, some of us walked to the park down the road and played with some of the children from the village. We played frisbee and soccer with them (they never ran out of energy!). When we got back, we met the linguist for the king, and talked to him for a while. Then we each met our host families and spent time with them. Everyone we met today was so kind and welcoming to us, and it made it so much easier to participate in all of our activities! After meeting our host families, we went back to the park and played for another hour, then headed back to home base for chatting and dinner. We went up to the roof when it started to get dark, and talked to each other and to Henry about the culture. We finished off the day by writing letters to ourselves, which we will open in three weeks before our flight home. We haven’t even started our real work yet and have done so much! Tomorrow we start working in the school, and we get to meet the king and headmistress of the girls’ school next door. Our whole group is so excited for the next three weeks, looking forward to volunteering and learning a lot about the culture here, and can’t wait to share more experiences through our blog!
Good night from Ghana!
Hi again! We had another fun packed day today! We woke up at seven and ate breakfast, and left soon after for the school. When we got there, we found welcoming smiles and got to see a performance from the children attending school. We took photos with the kids and all split up to different classrooms. We spent about 3.5 hours there watching their dance, listening in on classes, and playing with them on their break (recess). After we got to home base and ate lunch, we all talked and hung out for a few hours. Then we left the house to meet the king and had a discussion with him all about GLA and why we were in Africa.We also got to see the GMT (0,0 coordinates, aka the center of the earth!). When we got back, we went to the park and played with children until it was time for dinner. After dinner, we played cards and talked until it was time for our last teambuilding activity. Tomorrow, we will (hopefully) start brick building and teaching some classes at the school, and meet a linguist to learn some of the local language. We can’t wait to see what tomorrow and the rest of the week has in store for us, we are all so excited to start teaching and to meet more children!
Greetings GLA Community!
All 10 students arrived in Ghana yesterday, safe and sound and a bit tired. (Check out the photo from the van ride from the airport – the quietest moment of our trip.) The home base is located in a village right outside of Odumase Krobo in the Krobo region, about an hour and a half drive east of Accra. We are fortunate in that our home base is an actual home, belonging to Henry’s mother. The house sits atop a large hill overlooking the Krobo mountain valley and is located next to the Krobo Girls Senior High School. We will be doing a lot of service work and cultural immersion within the village and surrounding area. From this point forward, the blogs will be written by the selected leader of the day, so keep checking the blog for updates from our students!
– Kate, International Director, and Henry, Local Director