Friday, February 11, 2011

Back & sound

Well here I am, back home in Canada, safe and sound.

The last few weeks went by so fast, too fast in fact...

2011 CCA Ghana Coaches
I have to be honest when we were leaving Ghana I shed a few tears...and I am again now as I write this last posting...ahhh Ghana.....what a beautiful country and more importantly those incredible people are so amazing.....they have so little yet they give so really have to experience it to believe it.

Heidi & Emmanuel with "grass cutter"

One of my fellow coaches said that everyone needs to experience being a minority at least once in their life and he is so gives you such a different perspective on life and how to treat others......I have learnt so much about myself this trip, it was such an amazing personal development.

I am so grateful to so many people for making this trip such a memorable one for me...

Getting my hair "braided"

- to CCA for accepting me into this program, it truly was an incredible experience...I can hardly wait for next year....hopefully you will have me back! ;)

- to all the wonderful Ghanaians that I met and our amazing driver Moses, who kept us safe I say Medasi for being so warm and welcoming
Damien, Moses & Heidi

- to my fellow coaches and especially my partner Damo, I am so happy to have met you and to have made some new friends...for life!

- to my co-workers back home a big thank you for covering for me while I was away and for putting up with all the millions of stories I will be telling you and re-telling you when I get back to work...haha....

- to my boss, Dave and my employer, Interior Savings my gratitude for supporting my application and allowing me to participate in this incredible program with CCA, I hope I did you proud!

- to all of you who read my blog and posted some comments for me...thank gave me comfort knowing that I was still connected to all of you back home...(oh yeah and it gave me some good bragging rights with my fellow bloggers as my numbers were so high...right Cory?!...hahahaha...)

...and finally a huge thank you to my family....I know it wasn't easy with me being away so thank you for your patience and support, you've helped me realize one of my life long dreams and that is priceless!

Blogging in Ghana
Medasi....Sister Akua Heidi

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Saying Farewell

Today was our last day in Sunyani so we stopped by to say "farewell" to our new good friends at the Sunyani Teacher's Co-operative Credit Union.  I like to think of it as "farewell" instead of good-bye as I hope to one day return to this credit union to see all of these amazing people.  If I'm really lucky I'll get to do just that next year when I return for the second part of my coaching program.

While we were expecting just to say farewell, we weren't expecting to see that they had already implemented one of our suggestions to them!!!  WOW, we were totally blown away! The suggestion was to install a glass door on the Accountant's office so he could close his door for some Privacy (ha, just knew I had to throw a "PF" <Privacy Freak> comment in there didn't you?!) both for himself, so he could get some work done without constant interruptions, and for his members when they were in his office discussing their personal accounts.

When we walked into the lobby we immediately saw the door, and it was beautiful and the Accountant, James was beaming from ear to ear, he had said it was already making a big difference for him and he was so pleased.....but not nearly as much as Damien and I were!!

When we got back to the truck after our farewells we gave each other a huge HIGH FIVE......we did it, we actually did it, we left a small piece of ourselves here and were able to help in some small way make a difference.

YES!!!!!  Now that felt AMAZING and made my whole trip worthwhile, right in that very moment! I have to say I shed a few tears as we drove away......

Me dasi,
Sister Akua

(P.S. I'm having troubles posting pictures again so I hope to add some soon!)

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Akua & Kojo's Top 10 List

As tomorrow is our last credit union evaluation, Damien and I are reflecting back on our top ten list of items that we have learnt in the last 12 days about Ghana....

#1 - If asked to attend a credit union AGM clarify BEFORE you say yes how long it is....BTW....the 2 that we attended were both 5 hours long!!!

#2 - If you ask how much further you will be told "it's not far".....always determine how far this really is as "it's not far" usually means 2 hours

#3 - Everything is "within walking distance" in Ghana

#4 - If you ask a question and it is answered with "okay" it's not

#5 - Unless you like to eat "soup" with your hands, don't order the fufu

#6 - If a Ghanaian makes a "clicking" sound while talking this is a good sign

#7 - You need to practice singing "It's a Small World"

#8 - The only safe food to eat is chicken & rice...and more chicken & rice...and even more chicken & rice

#9 - Always carry your own roll of toilet paper and bring extra immodium and a cork for the car rides that "aren't too far"

And finally........

#10 - Prepare to leave a little piece of you behind when you leave Ghana, as you will never forget the amazing people and cherished new friends you will meet.  :)
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