Thanks to donations from generous people, we have raised a whopping US $1290! Your support has been overwhelming and so touching! I cannot say thank you enough.
Now that I am back in the United States, I can no longer personally accept donations. However, if you would still like to invest in Potter’s Village, please let me know, and I can put you in touch with the right people. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A CHANGE OF PLANS
Originally, I had planned to raise funds for and build a manhole and a wall on the back of Potter’s Village, which would solve some safety and sanitation concerns and greatly benefit the children. While these projects were worthwhile, circumstances have changed, and we (Mama Jane, her staff, and the volunteers) no longer feel that this is the greatest need. Additionally, because we are renting the property, and because landlord/tenant agreements seem to be nonexistent here, any work we do on this building is temporary and ultimately benefits the landlord rather than our organization. Thus, I would like to announce a change of plans, and I hope you will trust my judgment of the needs here.
WITNESS TO A MIRACLE
When I first arrived at Potter’s Village, I was told that Mama Jane’s ultimate goal is to own a large piece of land to build living quarters, a school, and a bakery, and to use some for farmland and possibly livestock. This dream allows the children and staff to live in more comfortable, sanitary conditions. It would enable Mama Jane to shelter abused women again (she had to stop taking them in when the living conditions worsened because the environment wasn’t conducive to emotional healing). It would also (this is the part I’m most excited about) give them a future income via the farm and bakery to be financially self-reliant.
Sounds pretty great, eh? I have to admit that when I first heard the plan, I was impressed by the vision but was also pretty skeptical because it seemed like it would be so far down the road that it may never happen at all. I didn’t really give it much thought beyond that. Until now.
Out of the blue, Mama Jane announced in one of our meetings that we received a donation of land near Aburi, about 2 hours away. The landlord donated some land and agreed to let us purchase additional, adjacent plots of land. And then I watched our Ghanaians kick into full gear, moving faster and with more excitement than I’ve ever seen here. I feel like I am witnessing a great moment in Potter’s Village history – a miracle that is launching them toward a sustainable, secure future.
Just a couple of days later, I accompanied them to see the property, which is located in the small village of Kwamekrom. A surveyor had already dropped by and demarcated the land – all 13 acres of it.
The village is located in the hills and has a much more mild climate than Dodowa. Growing crops there will be very easy. There were also several farms with pineapple plants, which was fun to see.
The property includes 3 acres on one side of the road, which will be used for living quarters and the school. Then on the other side of the small road is another 10 acres, which will be used as farmland. Eventually, they will build a bridge over the road (the Ghanaians call it a “fly over”) so that the children can cross safely.
WHERE THE FUNDS ARE GOING
The funds I’ve raised (in conjunction with donation money from another volunteer) are enough to pay for the surveying and demarcation of the land, securing ownership of the land (though I believe much of it still needs to be paid for), and clearing four acres to plant maize immediately. The four acres have already been cleared so that we can begin growing some of our own food right away, which is excellent.
To see more photos of the project, please view my post entitled, “I Bless the Rains Down in Africa.”
Your donations are providing the first step toward self-reliance and a secure, sustainable future for these children. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart.
I have also used a small portion of the funds to complete some minor repair projects to the current building. I have posted about those separately here.
Note: Any funds raised in excess of the actual project costs have been used toward medical care and other similar basic needs.