University of Ghana / M’adamfo Pa Orphanage   1 comment

If you have read my recent posts here you will know that our daughter, Hannah, spent the last 4+ months as a student at the University of Ghana in Legon, a suburb of the capitol city of Accra.  You will also know that Melanie and I flew there within the past two weeks to see the school and country, and to bring Hannah back home with us.  We had the opportunity to stay in the guest quarters on campus, to make several trips into Accra (a city of nearly 2 million people), and to travel to the seaside city of Cape Coast.

One of the highlights of the trip for me, however, was when we took a taxi and a couple of Tro-Tros* to visit the orphanage where Hannah was a volunteer teacher once a week.  To see the children run down the street to greet Hannah, and to personally be on the receiving end of so many spontaneous hugs, was an emotional high.  I was so taken with one little girl there that I googled Ghana’s adoption policies when we returned to the US.  Fortunately, Ghana has a requirement that you must be under 50 to adopt a Ghanaian child, saving me from impulsively going all Angelina Jolie with my emotions.

We’re proud of what Hannah did over there.  And to be honest, I’m glad that I didn’t find out exactly what she was doing until the very end of her stay there.  You’ll know what I mean when you see the photo of the neighborhood that she walked through on the way to the orphanage.  I’m still a Dad after all.

* Tro-Tros are small buses or large passenger vans.  They are privately owned and a primary mode of cheap transportation.  The operator of each Tro-Tro will drive past and yell out the destination.  If it is where you are going you simply hop on board and pay for the ride — usually between 20 and 50 Pesewas, or approximately 15 to 35 cents US.

(Above) Location: University of Ghana.  The library which served as the center of campus.  The university was founded in 1948 and has approximately 30,000 students according to its website.

(Above) Location: University of Ghana.  Two students walk past the International Student Hostel (ISH).  Taken from Hannah’s and Bella’s balcony.  Some of the campus roads were paved and others were not.  Everyone there had red feet from walking through the red, dusty soil.

(Above) Location: University of Ghana.  International Student Hostel (Hannah’s dorm).  If you look closely you can see the razor wire between the first and second floors that totally encircled the building.  It is difficult to see, but those are uniformed guards on the right of the vestibule / entrance to the dorm.  Although I’m 90% convinced that these were more or less precautionary steps, you can chalk this up to something I’m glad I did not know about until the end of her stay.

(Above) Location: University of Ghana.  I liken Ghana to Florida in August (without the air conditioning).  It was in the 90’s and humid.  Shade, shade, shade . . . and plenty of water is a must!

(Above) Location:  Outskirts of Accra.  Hannah and Melanie walk through the neighborhood on the way to visit M’adamfo Pa Orphanage.  While snapping the photo I heard a child yell, “Mama, obroni!” (white people).  Several people came out to look at us, and then returned my wave.

So yeah, this was part of Hannah’s weekly trek to the orphanage.  I’m proud of her.  I’m also glad I was oblivious to it for most of the semester.

(Above) Location: M’adamfo Pa Orphanage, outskirts of Accra.  Hannah and children from the orphanage.  Fati, the director of the orphanage (and an amazing woman), is in the back row with head scarf.  Kelice, the little girl who stole my heart, is front and center in the green-checked blouse.

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Posted December 27, 2011 by ~ Bruce in People, Travel Photography

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One response to “University of Ghana / M’adamfo Pa Orphanage

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  1. Hello, I am writing from the University of Ghana, International Programmes Office. This is a very interesting read! We would like to re-post this post on our blog http://uginternationalprogrammes.blogspot.com/. The credit for the post would be given to you, of course. Would that be possible?

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