Signing off! FOREVER! πŸ˜­πŸ˜±

Friday Today was my last day ever working in a hospital in Ghana! I honestly can’t believe it! It has been the most amazing experience of my life! I have loved working in both of the hospitals and feel like I have the experience of a midwife who has been working for like 10 years! Haha I have seen so much, learned so much and grown so much in just 4 weeks! I could honestly say I could live here! I love everything about Ghana! 

Today we had no deliveries unfortunately! But I did loads of VEs and cannulas and helped deliver the girl that had taken the herbal medicine and her baby had died. So was still an interesting day! They ran out of gloves today! Someone was about to do a VE and there were just not gloves in the unit at all! So luckily I had 2 boxes with me that I could give them. They were so great full! Babs and I left some scrubs and I left all my gloves and tourniquets, hand gels ect! I wish I could have brought much more to give them!

There was one girl there that wanted to have an abortion, she was 13 weeks pregnant and only 16. She had went to a herbal clinic and they had failed to terminate the pregnancy and she was so desperate to abort the pregnancy she was begging the doctor. Because she was only 16 she is still under the care of her mum so her mum had to give consent for her to have the abortion. Her mum wanted her to have the baby so there was a huge discussion. Eventually we found out the girls mum didn’t want her to have an abortion because she couldn’t afford it. It was 250 ceedies and she only had 100. Also the midwives only conduct terminations before 12 weeks so they didn’t want to do it. The doctor also doesn’t like carrying out terminations so there was no one! They said they would have to phone someone who would be willing to do it for free. Which was Nana, my favourite midwife, my inspiration! She said she would be happy to do it so it was conducted safely in a clean environment. I was happy they came to a decision or I would have been worried about her! We came back and packed up our stuff and had our last lunch! 

I really loved being in the smaller community hospital and working in a really small unit. I’ve been feeling quite emotional all day! I can’t believe it is my last day! I could easily stay for a few more weeks at least! (If Conor could come out and see me!) 

After work we went back to the house and had lunch which was my favourite! A weird fish thing! So I ate loaaaads! Then Rita’s dad came in a private car! We were like oooo did you used to be a little rich girl!? She was like no my dad is the chief! Haha it was so cool! Driving around in the Chiefs car with our own driver! And he was dressed like such a traditional African chief it was cool! So we went to the taakoradi docks it was such a nice view! I’m really going to miss Christie and Rita now that I am back in the old house! But only for one night and then I fly tomorrow! Tomorrow! I will be back in Glasgow! Just back to my old life! It is such a weird feeling! I’m really nervous! It’s going to be so weird! And now everyone knows what I have been doing here and you are all inside my head! Knowing all my thoughts, feelings and experiencing everything with me! You all probably know me better than when I left! 

There is so much I am going to miss but so much I am going to take away with me! I feel so much more confident as a midwife but also more aware about problems that people in Africa face that we couldn’t imagine being a normal thing in the UK. The women here especially are so strong! They go through so much but still just get on with their day. It’s like nothing fazes them! They can cope with intense pain, death and disease and still have a smile on their face! 

I think it’s going to be hard for me coming home and listening to people moaning about the most ridiculous problems and writing on Facebook about stupid things that have annoyed them when in the grand scheme of things they mean nothing! 

I am so greatfull to everyone that donated money towards me coming here and made this experience possible for me! I hope by reading my blog you think your money has gone to a good cause! 

Tonight I’m going out for a nice meal and celebratory drinks with everyone! Already started packing! I’m a changed woman! Haha 

I would love to come back in 6 months if I could! Haha but now it’s time for me to maybe get a job.. Maybe? Until next summer when I go traveling haha! 

So that’s me signing off! Signing off forever! No more blogs! Yeah I know you will all need to start a new tv series to fill the void! Haha if anyone has any questions about my trip feel free to ask! I am absolutely gutted its all over! However, I am looking forward to a nice cold can of irn bru and some haggis though! See you all in Scotland! 

Yours sincerely,

Caitlin MacPhie, 

(midwife, broonie, peacock)

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Reality is starting to hit me! I leave on saturday!πŸ™€πŸ™€

Thursday This morning Babs came with me again to the maternity unit! We were both so tired! It’s funny how exhausted you get! You must all be like come on! your working Monday to Friday, Have weekends off and are having the best time of your lives! Haha which we are but it really is exhausting! 

We went into the maternity room with everyone in it and I saw the woman that I delivered yesterday she looked so happy and gave me a huge smile and wave and said God bless you good morning! It’s so nice to see when women are happy the next day! Because when their baby is born they are so worried it won’t survive the first 24 hours they don’t bond at all and show no emotion! So when you get past that they really look delighted! Strait away I saw a woman rything about on her bed clearly in the late stages of labour so I went over to assess and help her. Her bowel were open (big telltale sign she is about to deliver!) haha so I checked the notes and 3 hours previous she was 8cm so I alerted one of the midwives to get the room ready. 

I took her through, sat her on the bed and vertex was just visable! I love it when that happens! Wakes you up quickly and sets you up for the day! Haha I don’t want to go into too much detail but there was noooo way the head was going to be delivered without a massive amount of trauma.. I asked for some lidocaine to do an episiotomy. The birth wasn’t imminent so I had plenty time! She said no just do the epiz.. (Which is giving a cut to prevent tears which would be hard to repair) I said I really am not comfortable doing that with no pain relief please could you get me some we have time!? She said no I will just do it.. So she did. Now looking back I feel stupid that I didn’t do it, it is a part of my job I just felt it was really unnecessary to perform an epiz with no pain relief when it’s not an emergency. The girl was also very young and already in extreme pain! 

I delivered the baby fine after that! Babs cut the cord and they took the baby to weigh and wrap it. Babs presented the baby to the mum and she tutted and turned away! Apparently she wanted a boy and the midwife I was with slapped her on the arm and said you should be happy she was beautiful! The girl was like 16 and it was her first baby so it’s quite unusual for people to be disappointed with their first!

I was so happy because the epiz was perfect! Such a good one to suture so I did it! As a student midwife you don’t get much practice suturing! My mentors taught me well though so I’m pretty confident so I gave her soooo much lidocaine! Haha (that’s to numb) and it was a beautiful job if I do say so myself! Haha 

After doing all of the paperwork we went to the antenatal clinic for the afternoon, I love the midwives there! One of them is Nana, the charge midwife who changed the policy for abortions in the hospital and the other one is just really nice! I had a few clients that were pretty normal! Then one girl came in who was supposed to be 25 weeks pregnant. I knew strait away she didn’t look 25 weeks. I asked if she had any movements and she said no, I checked to see how big she was measuring and it was just 17 weeks. There was no fetal heart on auscultation so I sent her for a scan. When she came back it was confirmed as an intrauterine death at 17 weeks. I asked her did she not think to come to the hospital? Was she not worried? And she said no but she had been taking lots of herbal medicines.. I said ok why? And she just said because she wanted too, she just likes them. When I left the room she said to another midwife she had been having enemas by a woman in her village. Then when I took her through to the labour ward she told the doctor that she had tried to have an abortion by paying a woman in the village but it must not have totally worked. Like I said yesterday the women here just don’t trust doctors and midwives and pick and chose who they are going to tell certain things to! So it’s so hard to know how to handle difficult cases! It must be totally emotionally exhausting for the midwives here! To try so hard to give information to women and promote a healthy lifestyle and promote western medicine and just get nowhere! Have women after women come in with the same problems and the same stories, when if they had asked for advice from a trained professional their circumstances would be much better! I felt really sorry for the girl, she obviously just didn’t want the pregnancy but felt so alone so took matters into her own hands. Also, it is not common knowledge that the hospital will conduct abortions because it was only started last Monday! I think if they manage to promote the service correctly and delicately it will make a massive improvement for the sexual and reproductive health in this village.

The rest of the clinic was ok thankfully! I learned loads! They put all women on prophylactic malarial drugs once a month throughout their pregnancy for free! They also test for HIV twice during pregnancy, because they have obviously had unprotected sex since they are pregnant so are living a risky lifestyle! I am so in awe of the work that the world health organisation and global fund do here! They really do make a difference to the population as a whole! Because of all the free HIV testing and medication the mother to child transmission on HIV during pregnancy is below 1% in Ghana! And they are now trying to eliminate it completely so they have an HIV free generation! And all because it is affordable! 

However! One thing that was brought to my attention was that antiD is not free! Anti-D is kind of hard to explain! It is given to women who have a rhesus negative blood type in pregnancy so if you are O-neg or A-neg whatever! You get antiD at 28 weeks then following the birth of your baby. This is because if your baby is rhesus positive and during delivery any blood cells are left in your body, your body sees them as foreign bodies and possible infection so fights them. So if you were to get pregnant again your body recognises these cells and kills them again! So it causes miscarriages or intrauterine death in subsequent pregnancies. AntiD coats the foreign cells to make them invisible so the body doesn’t attack them, and stops the body fighting further pregnancies! So anyway! It is 380 ceedies for one injection! That is so much money! Like 8 months rent for someone in Ghana! It is Β£70!! That is a lot of money for someone in the uk never mind here! I was so shocked! The midwives try and remind the women to save up throughout their pregnancies but for most women this is an unachievable amount of money! 

It makes no sense to me because it just means they will have recurrent miscarriages and IUDs and that will cost more money for the procedures and hospital stay! I don’t know how I could possibly help flag up this issue to anyone who could make a difference but something needs to be done! 

Belinda took us down to a village just next to the hospital because it was so so hot and the clinic had finished. We learned how to put babies on our back and carry them! It was so cute! Haha Babs and I bought the family in the village some lunch and juice for being so nice to us! Everyone in Ghana is literally 100% happier and friendlier than anyone I have ever met in Scotland and they have nothing. I am really going to take that home with me! Being content and living in the moment, not worrying about tomorrow just living for this day definitely makes you a much happier person.

When we came home Frank came to visit, because I have had such an amazing experience, working and living in Ghana I had to make a video for him to encourage other midwives to come out! Which was a bit weird but fine! I felt like I owed it to the organisation for really making this such a fantastic 4 weeks and organising everything for me! So I didn’t mind! 

Me Babs, Rita and Christie went to Bosua beach after work to relax which was really nice! I’m really going to miss the beaches here! 

I’ve been feeling a bit emotional today just thinking that I’m coming home on Saturday! Like back to what my life used to be like! It’s going to be really different because I feel like I’ve changed and grown so much! But also because my life has changed loads in the last 5 weeks and I’ve been in Ghana so not adjusted to my new life at all! Like I don’t work in Schuh anymore, I don’t go to uni, I live in Edinburgh (not sleep in Edinburgh but work in Glasgow) and i need to get a job as a midwife! It really is scary! But if I can survive these 4 weeks and still have a smile on my face I’m sure I will be fine! 

First baby in Dixcove hospitalΒ 

Wednesday This morning I was feeling much better! My neck was still so sore but with my diazepam and tramadol on hand I knew I could survive! Haha babs was at the pharmacy yesterday and was desperate to come to maternity but because I wasn’t there she couldn’t! So today was the big day she was going to be my shadow haha!When I was walking into the ward I was praying that I didn’t get so high I couldn’t work! Haha 

We walked into the ward and I was like oh no.. I don’t know any of the midwives today! So I found a midwife and said hi! I’m Caitlin I’m a midwife! Just get it strait out there that I’m not a student and I can work on my own! Haha Babs said I’m a pharmacist but want to be a midwife and Caitlin has delivered loads of babies so I am just going to follow her! Haha 

We did the ward round and there was one woman in labour. She was 5cm dilated and had been for 4 hours.. So I said I would palpate the contractions and just stole her to be my own patient! Haha she was only having 1 contraction in 10 minutes so I alerted the charge midwife and said she needs oxytocin. The midwife next to her said no she needs to wait for another 3 hours until she has an intervention.. I was like why? She has had 3 previous vaginal deliveries and now she has stopped dilating we might as well just give her oxytocin and get moving! She said no, but the charge midwife said she would ask the doctor, within 2 minutes she was back with the oxytocin and I started the infusion. They don’t have pumps here to regulate the amount of oxytocin you have to count the drops… It is so infuriating! So we started with 15 drops per minute and monitored the contractions I HATE watching the drops! It’s is so annoying they are never right and change all the time! You end up so cockeyed! Haha 

She was due examined at 10.45 and she was 6cm which was progress but they hadn’t broken her waters! So I said to the midwife and she said aw ok if you want to you can! So I did.. With forceps.. They have no special equipment so they just use anything kind of sharp! I have seen people use scissors, clamps and even needles to rupture them! 

Babs helped me monitor the woman doing her pulse and the fetal heart rate and counting the drops because I was losing my mind! Haha 

It was so nice to have my own patient I could just get on with it! But it was also great to have Babs being my glamorous assistant! She then spewed everywhere (all over Babs) and started saying she needed the toilet (when people in labour say they need a poo it’s always the babies head.) The women labour in the same room as women who have been to theatre or have already delivered, there is no privacy whatsoever. The midwife actually said to me that she thought it was a shame that there was no privacy but there was nothing they could do they only have one room! And one room for delivery and the bed is so uncomfortable women wouldn’t be able to labour on it! They also don’t have a toilet for the women in this ward so they all have squat buckets next to their beds. Squat buckets and no curtains or anything! It’s such a shame but again, there’s no other option! 

We went through to the labour room to examine her again she was 7cm which was progress but not time for delivery! I told the charge midwife and she said she was going to double check that she was progressing.. I hate it when people double check just Incase I have a different result to what they have gotten! Then it’s like my midwifery skills are rubbish of it is different! I never get VEs wrong but they always make me nervous! (Obviously I was right ;))

We brought her back to the room with everyone and their dog in it! And gave her tramadol for pain relief! I couldn’t believe it! I’ve never seen anyone get pain relief in Ghana! And she wasn’t like screaming the place down! It was just out of compassion they offered her it! I was so shocked! After an hour or two she started saying she needed the toilet again and started involuntary pushing so me and Babs moved her to the delivery room. 

As soon as she lay down the head was visable! I was so excited because Babs reaaaally wanted to see a delivery! And I could do it my way! There was another midwife there but she just left me and Babs to it! It was textbook and Babs cut the cord which she loved! Haha the baby was quite flat so needed some rescue breaths but then he was fine! 

It’s funny, resuscitating a baby used to be the scariest thing ever but now it’s just second nature! It was such a lovely delivery! I’m so glad Babs came with me today and I was well enough and not too doped up to work! 

When we got back from work we just relaxed we were absolutely exhausted! Haha! I love have Ghanians just rest all the time! Like its a legitimate excuse to leave work early, I’m tired I must rest- then they just say ok! You must go home! Haha so funny! 

Drugged up 😎😎

Tuesday I woke up at about 7am and tried to sit up and my neck was in agony! Anyone that knows me well knows I have this weird trapped nerve thing in my neck and it used to happen every 3 months and it actually disables me for a good 5 days! I went to the chiropractor in August last year and since then it has gone away! Until this morning.. I was so so gutted! Luckily I am living with a nurse and a pharmacist so between them they had diazepam and tramadol! So it’s fair to say I couldn’t go to work! I just lay in bed all day praying it would go away! I’m glad you don’t need to get drugs on prescription here!

Babs came back from work at like 2pm and it was actually a lot better! I could stand up and move it slightly so that was good enough for me! We had plantain and these beans for lunch which was so nice! And then got ready to go to the village. We were going to upper dixcove and we live just next to the lower part so had to get a taxi! 

Dixcove is split into the upper and lower, just by how far away it is from the sea! The upper and lower have their own Chiefs which decide what happens in the town. Basically they have a president then ministers then Chiefs and they all work together to improve Ghana as a whole. Apparently it works and all the Chiefs and tribes get on well. 

As I said before in dixcove most people are fishermen/fishermans wives, but the rest either have their own little shops they sell random things in or they make pots and pans. We went to a place that makes all the pots and pans and it was really cool! They go round everyone’s houses and buy their old used metal and recycle it by melting it down. They have loads of these clay structures that they pour the metal over which are all different and must take ages to make! And when they pour the metal over it it makes a new pan in like 1 minute! It was so cool! 

It was actually really scary though because they wore no protective gear at all! Just the guy that was pouring it! But the other people helping him literally had no top on, shorts and flip flops! It was funny because Christie is a nurse she went and spoke to them about how they need protective clothing and what will happen at some point if they don’t! She said she had to say something because when something goes wrong they will come to the hospital and it will be her looking after them. So she has a duty to try and prevent injury aswell as cure it!

We went to see the women making Palm oil, but apparently it’s not the season so they weren’t making any! 

We came back and had a nice dinner and I was exhausted from all the drugs and talking! Haha 

Rita makes beads for babies in her spare time which are so cute! I said last time babies wear them around their ankles wrists and waist to give them a good body. Well apparently adults wear them too to make their curves better and make their bodies more beautiful all the way through life. It is such a relaxing thing to do! She was asking what I like to do

I can’t wait to go back to work tomorrow! 

First day in Dixcove!

Last night we arrived at our new house for the week! I was totally nackred from the travelling! We met Rita and Christie who are both nurses in the hospital that we are working at and rent the house we will be staying in! They seemed really nice but Christie was just off a night shift so was even more tired than me! Haha 
The house was not really what we expected! It had both of the girls rooms and our room which was quite big with mattresses on the floor and a fan.. What more could you ask for! We were expecting to be slumming it! We went and had dinner which was a weird spicy fish thing with yam which was so so nice! (Barbara didn’t like it!) At least once a month I am so thankful that Conor’s mum made me eat fish! 

The shower was amazing! Freezing but amazing! It was the best shower I’ve had since being in Ghana! And the fan is so good in the room! I was a bit worried that this experience wasn’t going to be as different as I had expected! It might even be more luxurious than the other house!

We got up at 7, and strait away I had to go to the toilet! I was like oh not please don’t be ill again! All weekend I was feeling crappy and I had slept so much! I had a bit of relief so had some breakfast which was omelette and a bowl of rice.. Like watery rice.. apparently it was rice pudding but I really don’t think it was! 

It was absolutely pouring down! Torrential rain! It’s not rained the whole time I’ve been in Ghana but where we are staying is like right next to a rainforest! So Rita said oh it’s raining we will be late for work today! I was like why? And she said oh we can’t walk in the rain we will get wet! It was still raining outside but not as bad and she said we still must go to work, we can leave at 9! Haha 

We were shown round the hospital and everyone seemed really nice! Until we got to the labour ward.. They just didn’t really seem happy to see me! but I’m used to that being a student and then having to prove myself here! I honestly felt totally drained emotionally and physically. Working this hard trying to get people to like you, trying to prove yourself, working in 35 degrees and feeling rubbish is really exhausting! I am also working in pretty bad conditions and in some really horrible situations that you rarely see in the UK. The thought of working for another week in a hospital in Ghana really made me feel like I had no enthusiasm left for it anymore! I just wanted to go home and sleep!.. But that’s not why I am here! I am here to make a difference and to gain invaluable experience so I put on a smile and tried to make people fall in love with me! The midwives took a while to talk to me but I did the old routine! Smile and ask loads of questions and jump in and help wherever I could without being annoying! The midwives just don’t ask for my help because they want me to know they can do their job without me I think! Like I’m just this little rich developed white girl who thinks she knows everything and is here to try and tell them how to do their job better! So I need to show them that I respect them for the work they are doing here with the resources they have! Which I so do! They are probably more knowledgeable and skilful than every midwife in Scotland, they just don’t always have the supplies to give the most effective care!

I changed all the c/s dressings and the doctor was lovely! It is a very small hospital so they only have a general doctor who does all the surgeries and rounds! So he doesn’t specialise in OBGYN he does everything! but his c/s scars were beautiful!

 A woman came in who needed a vaginal examination in query early labour. The midwife couldn’t reach the cervix so I gave her the old trick of putting your hands in a fist under your bum which lifts the pelvis and the uterus and she was like woooow! That’s great! Haha anyone who is a midwife or has had a baby knows how to do this! 

I was like YAAAS I’m in now! So after that life was easy! The midwives were asking all about Scotland and what my life was like! 

A woman came in to the ward. It’s a joined antenatal labour and postnatal ward because the hospital is so small! I took her into the room and did her observations, her BP was really high, pulse was high temperature was high and she had lots of protein in her urine.. Because the notes are so so bad you just have to start from scratch and assess every woman from the beginning which is a pain but effective! So I asked her when her last period was and how many weeks she is now. She was 29 weeks pregnant. I got her up onto the bed and strait away I saw she was not 29 weeks pregnant. I checked the fundal height she was measuring 14 weeks and I couldn’t hear a fetal heart. I told the midwives I needed a scan and also some antihypertensives! Apparently she was being monitored for preeclampsia but she hasn’t been to the clinic for 10 weeks.. 

The sonographer came to give her a scan. Unfortunately the baby had died some time ago. The girl said she hadn’t felt fetal movement since about 20 weeks. The foetus was measuring 19week size. The way they told her seemed a bit harsh just said oh here is the baby arms legs and head but there is no fetal heart. The girl was really upset but there was nothing we could do. 

We went back to the ward where we had to admit her for observation for preeclampsia and also for induction. She protested and said she did not want to be admitted if she went home she would be fine. The midwives said this is a very common problem in this district. They just think they will be fine if they just forget about things that are wrong with them! Eventually we persuaded her to stay after telling her all of the risks to her health. I was so relieved! Unfortunately they only have one large room for everyone so this poor woman had to stay in a room with women in labour and also women who have had their babies. It is definitely not ideal but they don’t have the facilities to do anything else! It was such a shame.
A huge problem in this district is termination of pregnancy performed outside of the hospital. Terminations are legal in Ghana but it is frowned upon in communities. They say that pregnancy is punishment for having sex when you do not want children. This is not the only problem with performing termination of pregnancies! Midwives and doctors do not want to perform them unless there is a medical reason for doing so. This is mostly due to the country being mostly ‘religious’ apparently this is not really true. Midwives and doctors who perform abortions can get a huge stigma against them. They can become known for performing such ungodly tasks and no one wants this to happen to them. Some people also think that midwives performing abortions is allowing teenagers to be promiscuous! So they will not provide the service. 

In this hospitals books they have around 1 in every 13 patients coming in severely ill due to incomplete backstreet abortions. Which means they have gone to a woman in their village who claims to be able to use instruments or herbs to remove pregnancies. They use dirty equipment or dangerous medicine to do so and women turn up at the hospital in serious states. Some women have to have hysterectomies some get sepsis and die and some have to go to theatre to try and remove the retained products.

There is a new midwife in charge in this hospital who I met with today who told me that just last week she took this issue to the board. I really loved the way this midwife thinks because it is just like me! She said why should we not offer this service? Women should have reproductive rights and we should provide the care for women that they need so that we can keep them safe. One way or another women will get an abortion, it should be done safely and in a clean environment to protect their health. Because of this midwife the hospital started allowing midwives and doctors in this hospital to perform abortions last Monday! 

So a girl came in today who had been in 3 months ago and had had a backstreet abortion and needed retained products removed. She arrived and said she was pregnant again and needed a scan. She was 8 weeks pregnant and wished to have a termination of pregnancy. The midwife discussed with me that she was really nervous and explained everything to me that I have just told you and said they don’t even have the drugs to perform a medical termination but she can get them tomorrow. She was supposed to be off tomorrow but will come in to perform the termination to ensure she does not go to any backstreet clinics and is safe. No other midwife in the hospital feels comfortable or wants to be the first to do it. The midwife also offered the girl counselling and contraception advice to make sure she doesn’t come back with the same situation! I thought this was totally inspirational! This midwife has made a huge change for the sexual and reproductive health for all the women in this district! So amazing!

In this hospital there seems to be a lot of use of herbs and like witchcraft instead of seeking medical help! It has only been in the last 50 years that western medicine has come to Ghana, it all used to be herbal and local medicines. So some communities still see hospitals as scary places for severely sick people and will go to a healer in the community instead. 

For example one woman came to the clinic and 1 week ago she fell and scratched her arm really deep with a rusty nail and it had become infected. Instead of coming to the hospital she went to a healer and they put purple paint on it.. So it was even more infected! When she finally came to the hospital it was just for the antenatal clinic. When they saw her arm they told her she had to be admitted and she refused because the paint would fix it! It’s so frustrating it’s like they think we are trying to trap them! But really it’s trying to help! It’s just being in a small community, and the hospital just seems like a totally different world to them they are just not comfortable in a big hospital, which is fair enough! I completely understand why they don’t want to come into a strange environment and be given all of these weird medicines and have the control of their health completely taken out of their hands into some doctors they have never met before. When in their community women who had known them all their life would be ‘treating’ them in their own home!

This hospital is much more homely than the other one I was in! It’s more relaxed and more like what I am used to! They are really into prevention. They see a trend and actively try to stop this from happening! So for example they noticed many many babies were returning malnourished or had jaundice, so before the mums are discharged they observe a breastfeed and ensure positioning and attachment are good! It was so nice to see! In the other hospital it seemed like it was only in Scotland mothers had problems breastfeeding! Haha they all just wapped them on! The midwife said she had never seen a mum who didn’t breastfeed her baby so she had no idea what they would do if a mum didn’t want to or couldn’t! I found one flier that said that mums could strain boiled rice and give the water to the baby so it had starch in it.. So weird!

I left the ward at 2 because that was what time Rita finished work and we were walking home with her! She made a nice fish thing for lunch (which babs didn’t like again!) and then we set off around the village! 

It was so great to walk around and see how everyone lives! I have learnt so much about the struggles people face just trying to live! It costs 300,000 ceedies to buy a house so pretty much noone in Ghana can afford to buy so they all rent! It is 50 ghc per month for a 2 bedroom house with bathroom and kitchen! And that is still a lot for the people here! That is about Β£10 and then they have to pay for electricity. The electricity also goes out allllll the time! Because of the rain! A tiny bit of rain and it’s all off! Apparently it rains here every morning! Its so mad! when 1 hour down the road I’ve not seen rain for 3 weeks! Rita said it costs her about 100 ceedies per week to eat and drink and do any other activities (like sowing and buying material). 

Because it costs money to get married people have a family ceremony where both families meet and the male buys gifts for all the females family. They then have a small ceremony. They call this an engagement but basically this means they are married! In the eyes of their family they are married so they can move in together and have children. They just need to get married at a registry office or a church Incase one of them dies so it is legal! Haha some people have a white wedding like what we have but only if they have a lot of money! 

We went through the village and all the kids were running after us singing ‘hello broonie! How are you!? I’m fine!’ Haha it was so funny! Most people in this village are fishermen or they are fishermans wives who prepare the fish by smoking them in huge, kind of BBQs! All the women and their families who smoke the fish are really prone to infections in their lungs, respiratory tract and it also damaged their eyes. The men fish all the time but on Tuesday’s it is prohibited! No one fishes to allow the sea a day of rest. Anyone who fishes on a Tuesday may have bad things happen to them and it is their own fault! There was a huge shark on the beach that they had caught! They said they will just chop it up into small pieces and say it is normal fish! 

All the baby girls wear beads on their hips arms and legs and this is supposed to make them have good curves! Rita said I don’t think it really works! But I was like well you never know! We don’t do it and everyone here has much better figures than us! Haha

We saw all the fishing boats that I love! And went up to the metal cross fort! It is a fort where they used to trade in gold and spices. During the slave trade they also traded slaves and sold slaves, the British owned this fort. It was really beautiful. In Ghana there are 14 forts and 4 castles. It is called the metal cross fort because they had a metal cross that they would put in the fire and before selling the slaves they would brand them with this cross. They are now renovating the fort and have houses all around it where people can stay, it is just next to the sea so really beautiful! 

I am so excited for this week! I think we just thought this was a really nice place because we are used to slumming it! Haha having the Ghanian food and learning about how they live, their culture and struggles really is an eye opening experience. Even without going to the hospital I am learning so much! It is pretty exhausting walking everywhere and working every day but it is so with it! I love it! Everything about living here is amazing it’s beautiful in its own way. It’s just Africa. There is no better way to describe how Ghana is.

First day in Dixcove!

Last night we arrived at our new house for the week! I was totally nackred from the travelling! We met Rita and Christie who are both nurses in the hospital that we are working at and rent the house we will be staying in! They seemed really nice but Christie was just off a night shift so was even more tired than me! Haha 
The house was not really what we expected! It had both of the girls rooms and our room which was quite big with mattresses on the floor and a fan.. What more could you ask for! We were expecting to be slumming it! We went and had dinner which was a weird spicy fish thing with yam which was so so nice! (Barbara didn’t like it!) At least once a month I am so thankful that Conor’s mum made me eat fish! 

The shower was amazing! Freezing but amazing! It was the best shower I’ve had since being in Ghana! And the fan is so good in the room! I was a bit worried that this experience wasn’t going to be as different as I had expected! It might even be more luxurious than the other house!

We got up at 7, and strait away I had to go to the toilet! I was like oh not please don’t be ill again! All weekend I was feeling crappy and I had slept so much! I had a bit of relief so had some breakfast which was omelette and a bowl of rice.. Like watery rice.. apparently it was rice pudding but I really don’t think it was! 

It was absolutely pouring down! Torrential rain! It’s not rained the whole time I’ve been in Ghana but where we are staying is like right next to a rainforest! So Rita said oh it’s raining we will be late for work today! I was like why? And she said oh we can’t walk in the rain we will get wet! It was still raining outside but not as bad and she said we still must go to work, we can leave at 9! Haha 

We were shown round the hospital and everyone seemed really nice! Until we got to the labour ward.. They just didn’t really seem happy to see me! but I’m used to that being a student and then having to prove myself here! I honestly felt totally drained emotionally and physically. Working this hard trying to get people to like you, trying to prove yourself, working in 35 degrees and feeling rubbish is really exhausting! I am also working in pretty bad conditions and in some really horrible situations that you rarely see in the UK. The thought of working for another week in a hospital in Ghana really made me feel like I had no enthusiasm left for it anymore! I just wanted to go home and sleep!.. But that’s not why I am here! I am here to make a difference and to gain invaluable experience so I put on a smile and tried to make people fall in love with me! The midwives took a while to talk to me but I did the old routine! Smile and ask loads of questions and jump in and help wherever I could without being annoying! The midwives just don’t ask for my help because they want me to know they can do their job without me I think! Like I’m just this little rich developed white girl who thinks she knows everything and is here to try and tell them how to do their job better! So I need to show them that I respect them for the work they are doing here with the resources they have! Which I so do! They are probably more knowledgeable and skilful than every midwife in Scotland, they just don’t always have the supplies to give the most effective care!

I changed all the c/s dressings and the doctor was lovely! It is a very small hospital so they only have a general doctor who does all the surgeries and rounds! So he doesn’t specialise in OBGYN he does everything! but his c/s scars were beautiful!

 A woman came in who needed a vaginal examination in query early labour. The midwife couldn’t reach the cervix so I gave her the old trick of putting your hands in a fist under your bum which lifts the pelvis and the uterus and she was like woooow! That’s great! Haha anyone who is a midwife or has had a baby knows how to do this! 

I was like YAAAS I’m in now! So after that life was easy! The midwives were asking all about Scotland and what my life was like! 

A woman came in to the ward. It’s a joined antenatal labour and postnatal ward because the hospital is so small! I took her into the room and did her observations, her BP was really high, pulse was high temperature was high and she had lots of protein in her urine.. Because the notes are so so bad you just have to start from scratch and assess every woman from the beginning which is a pain but effective! So I asked her when her last period was and how many weeks she is now. She was 29 weeks pregnant. I got her up onto the bed and strait away I saw she was not 29 weeks pregnant. I checked the fundal height she was measuring 14 weeks and I couldn’t hear a fetal heart. I told the midwives I needed a scan and also some antihypertensives! Apparently she was being monitored for preeclampsia but she hasn’t been to the clinic for 10 weeks.. 

The sonographer came to give her a scan. Unfortunately the baby had died some time ago. The girl said she hadn’t felt fetal movement since about 20 weeks. The foetus was measuring 19week size. The way they told her seemed a bit harsh just said oh here is the baby arms legs and head but there is no fetal heart. The girl was really upset but there was nothing we could do. 

We went back to the ward where we had to admit her for observation for preeclampsia and also for induction. She protested and said she did not want to be admitted if she went home she would be fine. The midwives said this is a very common problem in this district. They just think they will be fine if they just forget about things that are wrong with them! Eventually we persuaded her to stay after telling her all of the risks to her health. I was so relieved! Unfortunately they only have one large room for everyone so this poor woman had to stay in a room with women in labour and also women who have had their babies. It is definitely not ideal but they don’t have the facilities to do anything else! It was such a shame.
A huge problem in this district is termination of pregnancy performed outside of the hospital. Terminations are legal in Ghana but it is frowned upon in communities. They say that pregnancy is punishment for having sex when you do not want children. This is not the only problem with performing termination of pregnancies! Midwives and doctors do not want to perform them unless there is a medical reason for doing so. This is mostly due to the country being mostly ‘religious’ apparently this is not really true. Midwives and doctors who perform abortions can get a huge stigma against them. They can become known for performing such ungodly tasks and no one wants this to happen to them. Some people also think that midwives performing abortions is allowing teenagers to be promiscuous! So they will not provide the service. 

In this hospitals books they have around 1 in every 13 patients coming in severely ill due to incomplete backstreet abortions. Which means they have gone to a woman in their village who claims to be able to use instruments or herbs to remove pregnancies. They use dirty equipment or dangerous medicine to do so and women turn up at the hospital in serious states. Some women have to have hysterectomies some get sepsis and die and some have to go to theatre to try and remove the retained products.

There is a new midwife in charge in this hospital who I met with today who told me that just last week she took this issue to the board. I really loved the way this midwife thinks because it is just like me! She said why should we not offer this service? Women should have reproductive rights and we should provide the care for women that they need so that we can keep them safe. One way or another women will get an abortion, it should be done safely and in a clean environment to protect their health. Because of this midwife the hospital started allowing midwives and doctors in this hospital to perform abortions last Monday! 

So a girl came in today who had been in 3 months ago and had had a backstreet abortion and needed retained products removed. She arrived and said she was pregnant again and needed a scan. She was 8 weeks pregnant and wished to have a termination of pregnancy. The midwife discussed with me that she was really nervous and explained everything to me that I have just told you and said they don’t even have the drugs to perform a medical termination but she can get them tomorrow. She was supposed to be off tomorrow but will come in to perform the termination to ensure she does not go to any backstreet clinics and is safe. No other midwife in the hospital feels comfortable or wants to be the first to do it. The midwife also offered the girl counselling and contraception advice to make sure she doesn’t come back with the same situation! I thought this was totally inspirational! This midwife has made a huge change for the sexual and reproductive health for all the women in this district! So amazing!

In this hospital there seems to be a lot of use of herbs and like witchcraft instead of seeking medical help! It has only been in the last 50 years that western medicine has come to Ghana, it all used to be herbal and local medicines. So some communities still see hospitals as scary places for severely sick people and will go to a healer in the community instead. 

For example one woman came to the clinic and 1 week ago she fell and scratched her arm really deep with a rusty nail and it had become infected. Instead of coming to the hospital she went to a healer and they put purple paint on it.. So it was even more infected! When she finally came to the hospital it was just for the antenatal clinic. When they saw her arm they told her she had to be admitted and she refused because the paint would fix it! It’s so frustrating it’s like they think we are trying to trap them! But really it’s trying to help! It’s just being in a small community, and the hospital just seems like a totally different world to them they are just not comfortable in a big hospital, which is fair enough! I completely understand why they don’t want to come into a strange environment and be given all of these weird medicines and have the control of their health completely taken out of their hands into some doctors they have never met before. When in their community women who had known them all their life would be ‘treating’ them in their own home!

This hospital is much more homely than the other one I was in! It’s more relaxed and more like what I am used to! They are really into prevention. They see a trend and actively try to stop this from happening! So for example they noticed many many babies were returning malnourished or had jaundice, so before the mums are discharged they observe a breastfeed and ensure positioning and attachment are good! It was so nice to see! In the other hospital it seemed like it was only in Scotland mothers had problems breastfeeding! Haha they all just wapped them on! The midwife said she had never seen a mum who didn’t breastfeed her baby so she had no idea what they would do if a mum didn’t want to or couldn’t! I found one flier that said that mums could strain boiled rice and give the water to the baby so it had starch in it.. So weird!

I left the ward at 2 because that was what time Rita finished work and we were walking home with her! She made a nice fish thing for lunch (which babs didn’t like again!) and then we set off around the village! 

It was so great to walk around and see how everyone lives! I have learnt so much about the struggles people face just trying to live! It costs 300,000 ceedies to buy a house so pretty much noone in Ghana can afford to buy so they all rent! It is 50 ghc per month for a 2 bedroom house with bathroom and kitchen! And that is still a lot for the people here! That is about Β£10 and then they have to pay for electricity. The electricity also goes out allllll the time! Because of the rain! A tiny bit of rain and it’s all off! Apparently it rains here every morning! Its so mad! when 1 hour down the road I’ve not seen rain for 3 weeks! Rita said it costs her about 100 ceedies per week to eat and drink and do any other activities (like sowing and buying material). 

Because it costs money to get married people have a family ceremony where both families meet and the male buys gifts for all the females family. They then have a small ceremony. They call this an engagement but basically this means they are married! In the eyes of their family they are married so they can move in together and have children. They just need to get married at a registry office or a church Incase one of them dies so it is legal! Haha some people have a white wedding like what we have but only if they have a lot of money! 

We went through the village and all the kids were running after us singing ‘hello broonie! How are you!? I’m fine!’ Haha it was so funny! Most people in this village are fishermen or they are fishermans wives who prepare the fish by smoking them in huge, kind of BBQs! All the women and their families who smoke the fish are really prone to infections in their lungs, respiratory tract and it also damaged their eyes. The men fish all the time but on Tuesday’s it is prohibited! No one fishes to allow the sea a day of rest. Anyone who fishes on a Tuesday may have bad things happen to them and it is their own fault! There was a huge shark on the beach that they had caught! They said they will just chop it up into small pieces and say it is normal fish! 

All the baby girls wear beads on their hips arms and legs and this is supposed to make them have good curves! Rita said I don’t think it really works! But I was like well you never know! We don’t do it and everyone here has much better figures than us! Haha

We saw all the fishing boats that I love! And went up to the metal cross fort! It is a fort where they used to trade in gold and spices. During the slave trade they also traded slaves and sold slaves, the British owned this fort. It was really beautiful. In Ghana there are 14 forts and 4 castles. It is called the metal cross fort because they had a metal cross that they would put in the fire and before selling the slaves they would brand them with this cross. They are now renovating the fort and have houses all around it where people can stay, it is just next to the sea so really beautiful! 

I am so excited for this week! I think we just thought this was a really nice place because we are used to slumming it! Haha having the Ghanian food and learning about how they live, their culture and struggles really is an eye opening experience. Even without going to the hospital I am learning so much! It is pretty exhausting walking everywhere and working every day but it is so with it! I love it! Everything about living here is amazing it’s beautiful in its own way. It’s just Africa. There is no better way to describe how Ghana is.

First day in Dixcove!

Last night we arrived at our new house for the week! I was totally nackred from the travelling! We met Rita and Christie who are both nurses in the hospital that we are working at and rent the house we will be staying in! They seemed really nice but Christie was just off a night shift so was even more tired than me! Haha 
The house was not really what we expected! It had both of the girls rooms and our room which was quite big with mattresses on the floor and a fan.. What more could you ask for! We were expecting to be slumming it! We went and had dinner which was a weird spicy fish thing with yam which was so so nice! (Barbara didn’t like it!) At least once a month I am so thankful that Conor’s mum made me eat fish! 

The shower was amazing! Freezing but amazing! It was the best shower I’ve had since being in Ghana! And the fan is so good in the room! I was a bit worried that this experience wasn’t going to be as different as I had expected! It might even be more luxurious than the other house!

We got up at 7, and strait away I had to go to the toilet! I was like oh not please don’t be ill again! All weekend I was feeling crappy and I had slept so much! I had a bit of relief so had some breakfast which was omelette and a bowl of rice.. Like watery rice.. apparently it was rice pudding but I really don’t think it was! 

It was absolutely pouring down! Torrential rain! It’s not rained the whole time I’ve been in Ghana but where we are staying is like right next to a rainforest! So Rita said oh it’s raining we will be late for work today! I was like why? And she said oh we can’t walk in the rain we will get wet! It was still raining outside but not as bad and she said we still must go to work, we can leave at 9! Haha 

We were shown round the hospital and everyone seemed really nice! Until we got to the labour ward.. They just didn’t really seem happy to see me! but I’m used to that being a student and then having to prove myself here! I honestly felt totally drained emotionally and physically. Working this hard trying to get people to like you, trying to prove yourself, working in 35 degrees and feeling rubbish is really exhausting! I am also working in pretty bad conditions and in some really horrible situations that you rarely see in the UK. The thought of working for another week in a hospital in Ghana really made me feel like I had no enthusiasm left for it anymore! I just wanted to go home and sleep!.. But that’s not why I am here! I am here to make a difference and to gain invaluable experience so I put on a smile and tried to make people fall in love with me! The midwives took a while to talk to me but I did the old routine! Smile and ask loads of questions and jump in and help wherever I could without being annoying! The midwives just don’t ask for my help because they want me to know they can do their job without me I think! Like I’m just this little rich developed white girl who thinks she knows everything and is here to try and tell them how to do their job better! So I need to show them that I respect them for the work they are doing here with the resources they have! Which I so do! They are probably more knowledgeable and skilful than every midwife in Scotland, they just don’t always have the supplies to give the most effective care!

I changed all the c/s dressings and the doctor was lovely! It is a very small hospital so they only have a general doctor who does all the surgeries and rounds! So he doesn’t specialise in OBGYN he does everything! but his c/s scars were beautiful!

 A woman came in who needed a vaginal examination in query early labour. The midwife couldn’t reach the cervix so I gave her the old trick of putting your hands in a fist under your bum which lifts the pelvis and the uterus and she was like woooow! That’s great! Haha anyone who is a midwife or has had a baby knows how to do this! 

I was like YAAAS I’m in now! So after that life was easy! The midwives were asking all about Scotland and what my life was like! 

A woman came in to the ward. It’s a joined antenatal labour and postnatal ward because the hospital is so small! I took her into the room and did her observations, her BP was really high, pulse was high temperature was high and she had lots of protein in her urine.. Because the notes are so so bad you just have to start from scratch and assess every woman from the beginning which is a pain but effective! So I asked her when her last period was and how many weeks she is now. She was 29 weeks pregnant. I got her up onto the bed and strait away I saw she was not 29 weeks pregnant. I checked the fundal height she was measuring 14 weeks and I couldn’t hear a fetal heart. I told the midwives I needed a scan and also some antihypertensives! Apparently she was being monitored for preeclampsia but she hasn’t been to the clinic for 10 weeks.. 

The sonographer came to give her a scan. Unfortunately the baby had died some time ago. The girl said she hadn’t felt fetal movement since about 20 weeks. The foetus was measuring 19week size. The way they told her seemed a bit harsh just said oh here is the baby arms legs and head but there is no fetal heart. The girl was really upset but there was nothing we could do. 

We went back to the ward where we had to admit her for observation for preeclampsia and also for induction. She protested and said she did not want to be admitted if she went home she would be fine. The midwives said this is a very common problem in this district. They just think they will be fine if they just forget about things that are wrong with them! Eventually we persuaded her to stay after telling her all of the risks to her health. I was so relieved! Unfortunately they only have one large room for everyone so this poor woman had to stay in a room with women in labour and also women who have had their babies. It is definitely not ideal but they don’t have the facilities to do anything else! It was such a shame.
A huge problem in this district is termination of pregnancy performed outside of the hospital. Terminations are legal in Ghana but it is frowned upon in communities. They say that pregnancy is punishment for having sex when you do not want children. This is not the only problem with performing termination of pregnancies! Midwives and doctors do not want to perform them unless there is a medical reason for doing so. This is mostly due to the country being mostly ‘religious’ apparently this is not really true. Midwives and doctors who perform abortions can get a huge stigma against them. They can become known for performing such ungodly tasks and no one wants this to happen to them. Some people also think that midwives performing abortions is allowing teenagers to be promiscuous! So they will not provide the service. 

In this hospitals books they have around 1 in every 13 patients coming in severely ill due to incomplete backstreet abortions. Which means they have gone to a woman in their village who claims to be able to use instruments or herbs to remove pregnancies. They use dirty equipment or dangerous medicine to do so and women turn up at the hospital in serious states. Some women have to have hysterectomies some get sepsis and die and some have to go to theatre to try and remove the retained products.

There is a new midwife in charge in this hospital who I met with today who told me that just last week she took this issue to the board. I really loved the way this midwife thinks because it is just like me! She said why should we not offer this service? Women should have reproductive rights and we should provide the care for women that they need so that we can keep them safe. One way or another women will get an abortion, it should be done safely and in a clean environment to protect their health. Because of this midwife the hospital started allowing midwives and doctors in this hospital to perform abortions last Monday! 

So a girl came in today who had been in 3 months ago and had had a backstreet abortion and needed retained products removed. She arrived and said she was pregnant again and needed a scan. She was 8 weeks pregnant and wished to have a termination of pregnancy. The midwife discussed with me that she was really nervous and explained everything to me that I have just told you and said they don’t even have the drugs to perform a medical termination but she can get them tomorrow. She was supposed to be off tomorrow but will come in to perform the termination to ensure she does not go to any backstreet clinics and is safe. No other midwife in the hospital feels comfortable or wants to be the first to do it. The midwife also offered the girl counselling and contraception advice to make sure she doesn’t come back with the same situation! I thought this was totally inspirational! This midwife has made a huge change for the sexual and reproductive health for all the women in this district! So amazing!

In this hospital there seems to be a lot of use of herbs and like witchcraft instead of seeking medical help! It has only been in the last 50 years that western medicine has come to Ghana, it all used to be herbal and local medicines. So some communities still see hospitals as scary places for severely sick people and will go to a healer in the community instead. 

For example one woman came to the clinic and 1 week ago she fell and scratched her arm really deep with a rusty nail and it had become infected. Instead of coming to the hospital she went to a healer and they put purple paint on it.. So it was even more infected! When she finally came to the hospital it was just for the antenatal clinic. When they saw her arm they told her she had to be admitted and she refused because the paint would fix it! It’s so frustrating it’s like they think we are trying to trap them! But really it’s trying to help! It’s just being in a small community, and the hospital just seems like a totally different world to them they are just not comfortable in a big hospital, which is fair enough! I completely understand why they don’t want to come into a strange environment and be given all of these weird medicines and have the control of their health completely taken out of their hands into some doctors they have never met before. When in their community women who had known them all their life would be ‘treating’ them in their own home!

This hospital is much more homely than the other one I was in! It’s more relaxed and more like what I am used to! They are really into prevention. They see a trend and actively try to stop this from happening! So for example they noticed many many babies were returning malnourished or had jaundice, so before the mums are discharged they observe a breastfeed and ensure positioning and attachment are good! It was so nice to see! In the other hospital it seemed like it was only in Scotland mothers had problems breastfeeding! Haha they all just wapped them on! The midwife said she had never seen a mum who didn’t breastfeed her baby so she had no idea what they would do if a mum didn’t want to or couldn’t! I found one flier that said that mums could strain boiled rice and give the water to the baby so it had starch in it.. So weird!

I left the ward at 2 because that was what time Rita finished work and we were walking home with her! She made a nice fish thing for lunch (which babs didn’t like again!) and then we set off around the village! 

It was so great to walk around and see how everyone lives! I have learnt so much about the struggles people face just trying to live! It costs 300,000 ceedies to buy a house so pretty much noone in Ghana can afford to buy so they all rent! It is 50 ghc per month for a 2 bedroom house with bathroom and kitchen! And that is still a lot for the people here! That is about Β£10 and then they have to pay for electricity. The electricity also goes out allllll the time! Because of the rain! A tiny bit of rain and it’s all off! Apparently it rains here every morning! Its so mad! when 1 hour down the road I’ve not seen rain for 3 weeks! Rita said it costs her about 100 ceedies per week to eat and drink and do any other activities (like sowing and buying material). 

Because it costs money to get married people have a family ceremony where both families meet and the male buys gifts for all the females family. They then have a small ceremony. They call this an engagement but basically this means they are married! In the eyes of their family they are married so they can move in together and have children. They just need to get married at a registry office or a church Incase one of them dies so it is legal! Haha some people have a white wedding like what we have but only if they have a lot of money! 

We went through the village and all the kids were running after us singing ‘hello broonie! How are you!? I’m fine!’ Haha it was so funny! Most people in this village are fishermen or they are fishermans wives who prepare the fish by smoking them in huge, kind of BBQs! All the women and their families who smoke the fish are really prone to infections in their lungs, respiratory tract and it also damaged their eyes. The men fish all the time but on Tuesday’s it is prohibited! No one fishes to allow the sea a day of rest. Anyone who fishes on a Tuesday may have bad things happen to them and it is their own fault! There was a huge shark on the beach that they had caught! They said they will just chop it up into small pieces and say it is normal fish! 

All the baby girls wear beads on their hips arms and legs and this is supposed to make them have good curves! Rita said I don’t think it really works! But I was like well you never know! We don’t do it and everyone here has much better figures than us! Haha

We saw all the fishing boats that I love! And went up to the metal cross fort! It is a fort where they used to trade in gold and spices. During the slave trade they also traded slaves and sold slaves, the British owned this fort. It was really beautiful. In Ghana there are 14 forts and 4 castles. It is called the metal cross fort because they had a metal cross that they would put in the fire and before selling the slaves they would brand them with this cross. They are now renovating the fort and have houses all around it where people can stay, it is just next to the sea so really beautiful! 

I am so excited for this week! I think we just thought this was a really nice place because we are used to slumming it! Haha having the Ghanian food and learning about how they live, their culture and struggles really is an eye opening experience. Even without going to the hospital I am learning so much! It is pretty exhausting walking everywhere and working every day but it is so with it! I love it! Everything about living here is amazing it’s beautiful in its own way. It’s just Africa. There is no better way to describe how Ghana is.