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Start off the morning with a friendly 4:00 AM wake-up call by a free-roaming rooster outside the window, followed by a bucket shower, breakfast of scrambled egg and onion, and a dusty walk to school hand-in-hand with one of the schoolkids. This was the three-week routine of CHIRP Radio volunteer Shawna Kaiser in Domenase; a village located in Western Africa's Central Region. The July trip offered a chance to observe a healthcare teaching program that partners high schools students from around the globe with local schools.
For the students who traveled to Ghana the exchange brought an unexpected richness not always experienced in the the modern world. The photos below show no electronics in hand. There is no shopping or Starbucks. Instead you will find joy, love and genuine friendship on the faces of Ghanaians from Domenase to Cape Coast.
Schoolchildren participated in the healthcare curriculum during the day. Later in the program two quiz competitions were held at a local church: one for the primary school and one separately for JHS students. The whole town turned out cheering for their friends, children and classmates.
There are two main roads leading in and out of the Domenase village. This is one. Oftentimes, at night, semi-tucks travel through the village's roads to neighboring towns. There are no streetlights and the trucks often swerve unpredictably due to large potholes in the road. The trucks swerving has caused death in the village and now street safety is part of the primary school's health curriculum.
Ghana is also in an election year.
There are approximately 2,500 residents in the village of Domenase in Ghana.
The African Foundation Dance Theater (AFODAT) performed during travels to Cape Coast. They provide training and educaton for young people to live on their own through dance, gardening, making clothing, jewelry and preparing meals.
The Cape Coast Castle is a dark reminder of the slave trade, but more importantly, of hope and renewal. For a historical journey of this landmark, please click here.
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