Introducing the volunteers

Read our second blog from Stephanie who met our latest bunch of volunteers last week.

It’s been a busy couple of weeks preparing for the Summer School, and most of our international volunteers have finally arrived in Ho! Alex, Amelia, Estefania, Joe and Gareth are all students at Leeds Beckett University, and they are joined by Shoshanna, who studies at University of California- Davis in the US. I had a fun couple of days in Accra going to meet everyone.

I took the tro tro back to Accra on Thursday, and met Moses outside Accra Mall. The mall is enormous, and is just like any typical shopping centre in the UK, with a range of shops, cafes and restaurants. After three weeks without coffee, I was in dire need of a caffeine fix and so we headed straight to the coffee shop! We then nipped to a local restaurant to grab some fufu before heading to the airport to meet Shoshanna in the evening.

As the Leeds volunteers were arriving the next day, Shoshanna and I spent Friday in Accra, with Moses as our tour guide. We visited the University of Science and Technology to see their end of year art installation exhibition, ‘Cornfields in Accra’, where pieces were made of everything from VHS tapes (do you remember those?) to resin-covered seafood. We then headed to the art centre to visit the craft markets. If you’re after souvenirs from a trip to Ghana, then this is the place to go. We saw an amazing range of crafts, including wooden, handmade animals, paintings and batik fabrics. We also got to experience the madness of Accra traffic first-hand! In the evening, we met Dan and Prince at our hostel and headed back to the airport to meet the Leeds volunteers. After spending a final night in Accra, it was time to head back to Ho and let the volunteers settle into their new home town.

Accra traffic

Exhibition 4Although the volunteers have only been in Ho a couple of days, they’ve already been getting to know the town and experiencing some of the local culture. On Saturday evening, everyone went into town to meet the teachers from St. Cecilia’s, in preparation for the Summer School. Pat also prepared both banku and fufu for them to try (more about local food in another blog soon!) on Sunday, and although some were nervous to give it a go, in the end everyone enjoyed it. They’ve also been getting to know each other, bonding over a rather competitive game of cricket at the house!

As I write this, the volunteers are busy planning their sessions for the first week of the Summer School, which finally gets underway tomorrow! The volunteers and I are all really excited, and I’ll be blogging all about the first week in my next post.

Joe bowling to Coco Volunteers trying banku

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