Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Going to Dubai, By Way of Ghana

I am going back to Ghana in two weeks.  I am so excited. My husband Ken invited me to join him during his next business trip to Dubai. So, of coarse, having Africa always on my mind,  I asked him if he could arrange a stop in Ghana along the way. Well, Ghana isn't exactly on the way to Dubai, I'll travel from Washington, DC to Frankfurt, Germany than Frankfurt to Ghana and then Ghana to Dubai. The important thing is that I am going to Ghana. I will be able to take the computers there myself and help set them up. I asked Alexandra how difficult it would be for Billa to buy the computers if he had the money. "Impossible" was her thought. If there were any to buy they would be imported from China and very expensive. It is not like there is a Best Buy on any corner. But it will be relatively easy for me to collect unused lap tops from friends, clean them off and load the educational software. It is the two days travel in coach that will be the effort. However, the first time I see one of those smiling faces saying "Madame, Madame, Hold Me, Hold Me" It will be worth it. While there I plan to interview Billa and take pictures for the children's book I am writing about his life. I have so much to do in the next few weeks to get ready. I am hoping to collect 8 laptops. I think that is all that will fit in three suitcases and stay under 50lbs each. I am also collecting toothbrushes, toothpaste, and educational materials. It is hard to imagine how little they have so I will post a few pictures.

God Bless my husband, Ken Kralick for his international position and for being willing to use his frequent flyer points to help me help the kids in Ghana.   

These are the smiles that make two 8 hour flights in coach and a 9 hour layover and Frankfurt worth every minute. Believe it or not, I have more fun playing with these kids in the poorest area of Accra than I would at the most expensive night club in South Beach. Yes, I have been there.

This is the front of the center. The shipping container and room on the front are vocational centers where parents have learned a trade. The left is a sewing center and the right is a hair salon. I am also collecting sewing machines. They are using the type of old sewing machines our grand parents used to use right now.

A photo op showing that I really am giving the supplies directly to Billa.

In this picture Alexandra is tutoring a girl in math. As you will see the supplies are very, very basic and out dated. I hope to bring better teaching tools. 

This is the nursery class as they are singing Happy Birthday to my daughter's boyfriend Matt Schaff, on his 21st birthday. They really sit in those positions, being that crowded as they learn.