It’s finally here; the last week of preparation has begun. The final inoculations have been administered and the anti-malaria tablets have been ordered. This time next week I will be in Ghana!As part of the Step into the Gap programme, I am able to go on an international trip. It’s hard to believe how quickly the time has gone by since November when I was told that I would be going to Ghana. It seems like only yesterday that I was beginning to make a to-do list and debating which of the January sales would be the best to visit for summery clothes! And now the countdown for when I leave the UK has officially begun.
I am excited to go to Ghana, but I have reservations too. It’s perfectly natural I suppose. A new country, new surroundings, new people. I have been well prepared by CAFOD (and for that I thank them very much) and feel that I am ready to go.
Along with the two other Gappers from Lancaster and CAFOD staff member, Patrick, I will be travelling to the north of Ghana to Bolgatanga. I will be looking at education projects here. Similarly, I will be visiting a Sister of the Holy Child Jesus School on Cape Coast in the south. I really can’t describe to you my excitement to be visiting schools! I have seen pictures and videos of the school that I will be going to on Cape Coast and it looks like it is going to be a really rewarding experience going to these schools. Some of my friends have been to other parts of Africa before and have told me that visiting a school in Africa is one of the best experiences ever. Apparently, we will be so welcomed, that we will not want to leave!
During the past couple of weeks I have not only been preparing what to take with me for myself, but also what I can take to use as resources for the young people there and the nuns that I will be staying with. At Just Youth, where I am based, there is a bag set aside for Ghana and the things I plan on taking. It is filled with papers, pictures of the UK, a Christmas tree made by the hands of the wonderful young people at our Youth Club and Frisbees for us to play with whilst we are over there. The current big debate is whether I take a picture of Manchester United FC or Liverpool FC…a debate that as the Liverpudlian based in Salford, I am fast losing! It is funny how little things that we find trivial such as a picture of the Queen or a Frisbee could be completely captivating to a child in Ghana. I can’t wait to see their faces when we tell them about what we do and what our country is like. I really do hope that they enjoy our presence.
So please, keep me in your thoughts whilst I am getting the last few things ready to go. Also, please keep myself, the two other Gappers Christine and Emma, and Patrick in your thoughts whilst we are away in Ghana. And please do keep checking the CAFOD Salford blog to see what we are doing!