HOME       VOLUNTEER OVERSEAS       BLOGS
Developing a just society based on equity and equal opportunities for all with respect for diversity.

Monday, July 3, 2017

The one with hindsight: 10 things we wish we’d known about Tamale in week one


               
                We’re now approaching the end of our project and have a lot of work to complete. It’s been a wild ride from the moment we left Heathrow. On hindsight, we wondered what we would be telling ourselves at the beginning of the project. So here are ten things we wish we’d know about Tamale in week one.

1)      Branch out your food options; ask the locals where the buy the best yams. The best food will always be in the most unexpected place.

Isobel, Katie, Daniel and Nuru at the radio station



2)      Eggy bread for breakfast is one of the best things about Ghana. It’s basically an omelette in a pan-fried, buttery baguette. Establish the eggy bread stations early on so you can make an early trip before work.

3)      Prepare to become overly-friendly. Even the natural extrovert will become overwhelmed by the amount of attention you receive. Just revel in all the attention you get and take the opportunity to have a few great conversations along the way. Those chance meetings are among the moments you’ll never forget.

4)      Buy a spare phone out here; you can get a very nice little smartphone for a fraction of the cost in Ghana.

5)      Ghanaians are very passionate people; you’ll have marriage proposals and constant requests to be your friend. Take it all with a pinch of salt.
Bronte and Katie in Nanton-Kurug

6)      Don’t bring so many clothes, shampoo and conditioner: you can find it all in Tamale. Albeit it is quite expensive with the budget you are given, but don’t expect to be completely isolated from your home comforts.

7)      But bring as much hand sanitiser as you possibly can. It’s very expensive and very necessary.

8)      Bring memory sticks as well. Group sharing of documents becomes a nightmare when you have to do it over the internet.

9)      Start buying fabric and going to the seamstress early. You’ll be tempted to put it off for weeks to search for the perfect fabric, but when you finally get around to it, it’s addictive and you’ll wish you had more time to experiment with the Ghanaian style.

The Team in Nayorku

10)   Finally, don’t be afraid to put your own stamp on the project. This was reinforced to us at the beginning, but it was only by the end that we really got what it meant to take initiative. Take time to learn what the project is, and then start putting faith in your own opinions.

By Bronte