moving to Ghana for three months to work in an Nkoranza group home for people with disabilities
With everything I had sitting in my lap, surrounded by dozens of unfamiliar languages, and bumping my head on the roof of the Ghanaian bus, I was living out the dream I’d had for over a decade—and I was scared stiff. I had been offered a summer job at a home for people with disabilities in the village of Nkoranza, Ghana. And was doing it. What. Was. I. Thinking.
Finally arriving at the group home was a whirlwind. I let myself into the room that would be my home for the next three months. The round stone room was seven or eight feet across and held a hard twin bed, a plastic chair, and a wooden cabinet for my clothes. I was settled in and I still could not figure out what I had gotten into.
The next three months at PCC were full of work, school, games, and a lot of laughing. I helped teach in the Special School down the street, worked with residents weaving traditional Kente cloth, and played football (soccer) on Field Days, which I lost miserably.
Life in town taught me so much about Ghanaian culture. I met ladies selling bread or peppers or fruit at the market who loved teaching me their local language, Twi, so I would talk and make them laugh with my terrible accent when I went to buy groceries in the afternoons.
Friends took me to weddings at their churches--can you believe Ghanaian weddings are a full day long? Chapels are packed enough to give a fire marshal a heart attack, everyone is dressed in loud traditional fabrics, and the ceremony is shouted in local languages, much to my confusion.
On weekends, I traveled. We hiked through a jungle with no trail and rock-climbed barefoot. We played with monkeys, swam under waterfalls, went on a safari, and walked on a swinging bridge one hundred feet in the air through the rainforest.
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