Showing posts from March, 2017

Misdiagnosis, mental health and one mother's journey

Misdiagnosis delayed one London-born teenager’s treatment for Asperger Syndrome by 17 years until a chance visit to a doctor in Ghana changed her life for the better.

"Ann-Marie was born in 1998 and she was always an active and alert baby. I remember my aunty commenting on it,” her mother Jayne said. “But I thought that was positive.” At six weeks old, Ann-Marie stopped sleeping in the afternoon and it was increasingly difficult to keep her still. As she grew older, her behaviour became more unusual. 

“I remember on her first day at nursery, her teacher asked me if she had sight or co-ordination problems. My husband and I had her assessed but she didn't.
"By the time she was four years old, her cousin, who was also her best friend, left the nursery. That was the first time that I saw that she struggled. She wasn’t sleeping well at night and would wake up and stand at the foot of the bed and ask: ‘did I do something wrong, why can’t I play with my cousin?'"

Routine In…

Could Ghana take a leaf out of Tanzania's textile industry?

With the current explosion of African textiles in global fashion, I am fairly sure that many of you reading this will have one or two pieces making a home in your wardrobe. Typically, if the cloth

(Ntuma/Ankara) was manufactured for the West African market, the colours and patterns would be the dominant features. Any wording to explain the meaning behind the patterns would be relegated to the edges of the materials or become part of the hem of a skirt or wrapa.

Business branding There are exceptions of course. Businesses, institutions and political parties tend to feature names from their company,  university on these textiles or use it for commemorative occasions, and this form of communication is not unique to Ghana. It happens in Tanzania and neighbouring countries as well, as a way of building brand awareness and conveying important messages to the public. But what seems to be slightly different in East Africa is how contemporary and niche these forms of communication can be. It wa…

British-Ghanaian TV personalities share their career tips

If you think you've exhausted all options when progressing your career, there is always something else you can try. That's what I took away from the Star 100's 'In Conversation' session with TV and KissFM radio presenter Melvin Odoom and SkyTV newsreader Claudia-Liza Armah on 25 February.

You couldn't pick more wildly different personalities if you tried. Melvin, who has Ga and Fante roots, had me gripped even before the session started. He mixed easily with the audience, renewed my faith that some celebrities are down to earth, and effortlessly had us 'catchin joke' throughout his talk. 
Claudia-Liza exposed her nerdy side and had me enthralled at how years of parent-enforced incarceration (the story of my life as the daughter of immigrant Ghanaian parents) had resulted in her becoming somewhat of a TV expert.

At one stage during her talk I swear she didn't take a breath between listing all the programmes she watched as a teenager, and reeling off c…

Ghana Independence – why stop at 60?

Ghana turns 60 on 6 March 2017, having forged the way for other Sub-Saharan African countries to secure independence from Western colonisers. That day was marked by Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah’s rousing address to those thronged in Accra’s Independence Square that the black man was capable of managing his own affairs.

Typically, when this annual celebration swings by, there is a rash of adverts urging people to pull out their favourite garbs and mark the auspicious day at some 'dinner and dance' function. Observing the day is a powerful reminder to old and young about the sacrifices men and women went through to attain social, political and economic independence.

Beacon of hope Those still alive now that were present then will no doubt recall the raising of the Ghana’s iconic flag, designed by Theodosia Okoh, and the electric feeling of hope and positivity that ran through Independence Square.
Ghana was that beacon of hope for the African continent and her diaspora children. In t…