Archive for empowerment

Count Your Blessings

Posted in General Blogs, Tamale chronicles with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 22, 2022 by kola

The songwriter says count your blessings, name them one by one, see what glorious mercies the lord has done.

More often than not we look outward and count the bigger blessings like having a house, a car, and the material things in life. Have we ever stopped to think that the most important blessings are the little ones?

First and foremost, we have life. How many funerals were there this past weekend alone? Yet we are alive and kicking. The greatest gift God has given us is the gift of another day and we need to be grateful.

Now you saw today huh. Yes the gift of sight. That’s another blessing on its own. It is part of the gift of all the senses. I remember during the pandemic how people were eager just to smell the things that hitherto they considered pungent like the smell at that korle area or Odawna in Accra or the forest in front of Modern City Hotel during the heat season or the various open defecation places in Tamale, and I remember how it gave me the freedom to fart freely at seminars and workshops and if you could smell it through your nose mask it was considered albeit jokingly that you were covid free. 😂😂

Heh! This world. Something that was socially inappropriate now becomes accepted because it becomes a marker for something serious.

If you want to understand the magnitude of the gift of life and the many blessings one enjoys daily just spend a few hours at any hospital emergency or OPD. One time I was in the hospital and the orderlies sent to collect the oxygen tank ended up engaging in an auction for the tank since there was only one tank and three people wanted it. It became a haggle for who could pay more for the tank right there and then. The haggling went on for a while and then the highest bidder paid 80 cedis an hour for the oxygen.

I felt water tricking down the front of my shirt and apparently whilst the haggling was going on it had dawned on me the implication of what was happening right in front of me. Somebody was going to pay 80 cedis an hour to live for the air that I could breathe freely and if I didn’t want it could just fart it out freely too.

Now let me do a little Bawumiaconomics here..  If I am 40 years old plus, and for every hour that I have been on this earth I was paying even one Ghana per hour on the oxygen that I was breathing, how much will that be? That will be One Ghana multiplied by 24, multiplied by 7 days a week, multiplied by 30 days a month, multiplied by 365 days a year and finally multiplied by my age. That’s how much gratefulness I owed to God.

Indeed when the songwriter said count your blessings, I truly didn’t consider this as much of a blessing but more like an entitlement as a human, since I was living. Until this haggling /auction incident.

Today as I write this, I have gone to play soccer, yeah, my first soccer game after my knee accident, and again I have pulled a hamstring. I really need to consider my age when doing some things and not overdo it since I’m no spring chicken anymore as most of my friends will be quick to point out to me.  But the thing is that, that little muscle that I have pulled hurts like hmm and when I walk it is like I am walking on pines and needles. It is a little muscle just under my butt cheek but with the pain it makes sitting pretty difficult and walking is as awkward as can be.

What I take from all this is to give glory to God because in His perfect wisdom He created the human body and every sinew, muscle or bone is important in its place in the body structure. It shows the magnificence of God. If you don’t believe it just stick your thumb in your palm and try to pick anything up. See if you can.

Another thing is that small part of the ear that controls the whole balance in your body. That explains why when one is slapped so hard the person just falls flat.

In essence all I am saying is let us just appreciate the little things in life. I do appreciate a lot, even the fact that you are the one reading this. If it wasn’t for you, who would I be expressing my thoughts to.

Appreciate the everyday things around you and the everyday people too. The little things that you see around are the same things that come together to constitute the big thing you call life.

The more appreciative we are in life, the easier life gets for us and God Himself inhabits the praise of His creation. Let’s be grateful to God and give glory for his blessings in our life.

Thank God for a new day each day.

Like I always say it begins with YOU!


Persons With Diabilities

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on December 19, 2013 by kola

In some of my earlier posts I have dealt with issues that are dear to my heart but none is more dear to me than the issue of persons with disability (PWDs).

The politicians always irk me but hey, I don’t care because inasmuch as people sit on air to rave about the corrupt practices from one government to the next, nothing will really be done. This is because politics is now the focal point, and festering ground, of getting rich quick in our black continent of Africa, Ghana being no exception.

However in the case of persons with disability, it is obvious that when you fight for them, you see visible changes in their situation and that alone is good enough knowing you have contributed to another person’s well being.

Why do you think corporate entities roll out programs costing large sums of money to give to disadvantaged people in society. It is not only their social responsibility but also it helps them win compassion from their intended clients. A person will feel better knowing that part of his/ her money will later on be used to cater for disabled people in some community somewhere thus patronising a particular corporate entity.

So I find myself sitting in at a workshop on community development especially with regards to Persons With Disabilities (PWDs) in the community. At the worship, PWDs are sensitized that like any other person they have rights too and they can demand for their rights. They have a rights to legal aid, police protection, any public utility or facility and a whole lot more like any other cirizen.

A resource person stressed that community and therefore national development shouldn’t exclude PWDs. To this effect, social facilities and amenities should be provided for PWDs. In other articles I have expressed the lack of ramps and other facilities in public buildings to cater for the disabled. This is worrisome and it is important that city engineers take note and make amends.

It was stressed at the workshop that education is very important. PWDs should try to get themselves educated so that they know what is going on in society and be able to make informed decisions about issues relating to them.

In the Sagnarigu District in Tamale, most of the schools are located. The Education Ridge, which hosts almost all levels of education in the region is located in the district and as such PWDs in the district should take advantage and sign into available education programs.

Disability is not inability!

A very important lesson learnt was that global development in recent times is about linking people who will provide development and those who will receive development amenities. It is a time not to be selfish but development now involves sharing resources. Resource persons reiterated the importance of PWDs coming together as a force, through their association to demand for disability rights.

One resource person called for PWDs to “Raise Your Voice” for yourself.

The resource person stressed that advocacy is perseverance and persistence. The Disability Association needs to find ways to get itself heard at committee levels or high profile meetings where all the stakeholders are usually present.

Personally, I think this is a lesson that doesn’t apply only in this situation but I have adopted it into my proposal writing lifestyle. Perseverance and persistence are the keys to success.

There were other resource persons at the workshop on various topics including loans for business ventures, the district common fund and how it applies to PWDs and how they can assess it and many more.

Generally, it was intriguing seeing persons with different disabilities – blind, deaf, dumb and lame – and managers sit in one hall to have an interactive session on the way forward.

In the wake of Madiba’s funeral, with all the signing going on, (for the deaf) I had a smile on my face the whole time just wondering how much of it was fake and if any of them was schizophrenic. Obviously with the intensity of signing away all around me, well, who is to say.

Disability has always been an issue very dear to my heart and sitting in a program like this – even though it’s partly in dagbani – makes my heart skip with joy. There should be more programs like this nationwide and I do commend whoever organized it to keep it up.

Furthermore, it is high time stakeholders took notice that PWDs are part of the community and development should involve them.

Politicians! They have thumbs too! Watch out!