I recently returned home from my trip to Ghana and I cannot help but feel a sense of excitement as well as an overwhelming warmth about the last 2 weeks.
My time there has been rewarding and enriching, and I feel I am a more mature person as a result.
Over the last 10 days, I have laughed, cried, been heartbroken, felt helpless and yet, full of hope, inspiration and above all humbled by what I witnessed.
Meeting with the local communities, witnessing their daily struggles to survive but also seeing their determination to learn skills, to study, their hope, their smiles and vision for a better future has been inspiring. Their determination, no matter the obstacles whilst in such remote area with so little, has been an eye opener and a humbling experience. We read about it in the paper, we see it on TV, but it is so different when you are with the community on the ground and you witness their daily struggle and courage.
There are still many heart-breaking situations which have left me feeling powerless and thinking, will things ever change one day? But for every step back, there was an unbelievably impactful story. For example: when spontaneously, a man walked in our local office to say thanks to Action Through Enterprise, “my daughter is going to school because of you”; or when a girl who is part of the first batch of girls to attend senior high school tells you that “without your support my life would have been miserable”, that her dream is to become a midwife and go back to her village to help the women and be a role model for the other children; or the farmer, who cannot thank us enough for the skills he has learned enabling him to face the tough dry and rainy season farming but also enabling him to have apprentices and empower others within his community.
What I was so pleased and impressed to see is that not only the support we provide benefits an individual directly but it has a ripple effect throughout the community, as the child who has access to education will inspire others, the farmers and entrepreneurs will be able to take on apprentices and act as role models within the community. Those daily testimonials are the rewards and a successful accolade for what Action Through Enterprise sets out to do: empower the local community to live sustainably.
The present and the future is not straightforward and certainly with moments of doubt and disillusionment, hardship and heartbreak but also, more and more full of hope, inspiration and empowerment. The people of Lawra want to be self-sufficient, so please do continue to support Action Through Enterprise so we can continue our mission.
I cannot thank those of you enough for your generous support.
Written by Nathalie Burdet, ATE Trustee
If you’d like to support Nathalie’s fundraising for ATE, go to https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/nathalie-burdet1