Wednesday, June 23, 2010


So I’ve “officially” started work! Child’s Right’s International (the organization I’m working for) actually does some pretty cool stuff. They have these Child Right’s clubs for youth (10-18ish I think) and I don’t quite know what they do yet, but I think they are really neat because the kids decide what they want to focus on.

The project that I’ll eventually be working on involves putting these bird house type boxes (which are closed and locked) in communities that have Child Right’s clubs. From what I know, the boxes are for kids or community members to report the abuse of the rights of children. From the responses we can deduct what kind of stuff to focus on in the community.

I’ve been here for just over a week , and I am trying to start my house hunt. The hotel that I’m staying at is beautiful and has wonderful people, but I’m really eager to get my place so I can unpack, cook, and live closer to work/the rest of Accra. I’ve had a couple of “nibbles”, but no bites, so I haven’t been able to see any rooms yet, but soon!

Last week me, Becky (a friend from school), and Julia (another volunteer) went to Makola Market in Accra, and it was pretty neat. There were SO many people doing SO many things, it was intense. It was pretty neat because earlier that day we had a Twi (the language mostly spoken in this area), so we got to practice it. A couple of times, the ladies selling fabric would ask us our names or how we are and we would respond in Twi. You have to be thinking, “but Brianna, how do you tell someone your name in another language?” well, I’m glad you asked. The Twi people get a couple of names when they are first born, depending on the day of the week they were born and how many children there are already in their family, then their dad gets to choose a name for them about a week later. Anyways, I was born on a Wednesday (i think) so my “name” is Akwee-ah (that’s how it sounds). When we told the ladies our Twi names, they were so impressed, they would then call their friends over to listen to our response again. Then we continued to show off our skills by asking them how they were in Twi. They also tried to teach us some more, so it was good. After we all bought some BEUATIFUL fabric (I got 6 yards for about $10!) we decided to tro tro home. A tro tro is like a bus for about 12ish people and they go everywhere in the city, on certain routes. We had to get somebody to take us from the market to the tro tro station because we had no idea where we were and luckily he showed us which line was ours as well. So, we stood in this line for an hour and got a ride home which was a hour and 20 minutes, but, only costed 65 pesawas, which is about 45 cents (or something like that)! Unfortunately, we had no idea how your supposed to request a stop, so when we got close to our hotel, we started asking people. I think they thought we were panicking because they yelled at the drive to stop. This was followed by a bunch of people grumpily getting off the tro tro to let us out. I’m guessing that’s not the way to do it.

And then, this past Saturday, was the Ghana vs Australia “football match”. I went downtown with some friends to watch the game in this big room/bar thing and it was pretty funny because one of the girls I was with was Australian and she was wearing an Australian soccer shirt. She got jokingly yelled at, chanted against, and wasn’t exactly able to sing the national anthem. People were taking pictures. Things got a little tense when Australia scored, but luckily in the end it was a tie, so everybody wins! After the game, we wandered the streets and I bought the tastiest mango from a lady, and she cut it up for me! Then the Australian girl (Prue) or Prue (the Australian girl)... bought a custard apple (google it!) and it was SOO good and weird. Pretty much the best fruit here.

Another cool thing is EVERYONE carries things on their heads. We’re talking jugs of water, tables, and boxes of bread for sale which has this little door thing that they open to grab a piece while it’s on their head!... very cool and definitely a skill I want to work on.

That’s about it for now!

Oh, and Hridi (a friend from school) is supposed to come up this weekend, so that is exciting!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Having a goood time!

After about 30 hours of traveling I did get to Ghana (success). When we got in (at 6.45) it was dark! Apparently it gets dark at like 6, weird. We got a ride to our BEAUtiful hotel in Accra and just as was ready to go to bed, Hridi (a friend from school who has been living in Kumasi [about 4 hours from Accra]) came in the door! It was awesome.
Then on Saturday, we went to the mall (ya, Accra has a mall!) and we bought phones. It ends up my new phone is nicer than my old phone, cause it has radio (which is awesome here) and sudoku (which was helpful last night when I couldnt sleep).. I also have free incoming calls and texts. Hridi was SO helpful even though she had never been in Accra really, just her 3 weeks of Ghananess made our weekend so easy and happy. She also had contacted a cousin of one of her friends at u of t who took us around and about Accra. His name was Eric and he was also super awesome/helpful.
On Sunday Ghana won their football game! And today (monday) we did some orientation stuff with WUSC. One of the women who work here took us to a place for lunch and I got some fufu (youtube/google it) and it had fish in the sauce (i could tell by the bones):( Anywho, I ate up what I could and oh man it was filling. Imagine eating like a bocce ball sized ball of raw pizza dough, ya, that's what they expected me to do.
So in the upcoming week I'll be looking for a place to stay and start work. I will keep you posted.

> news! gmail has free texting!

ps, it is hot... like beads of sweat everywhere ALL of the time. im told i will get used to it :S