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Plans for the summer?

I have plans, and I am excited to share!

(photo from photographer credit: NIck)

(photo from photographer credit: Nick)

At the end of May, I will be off to Ghana for a global health program with the NGO Operation Groundswell.

While I may not be able to take stowaways, you can get involved, have your voice heard and follow my adventures here!


What is Operation Groundswell’s Global Health Program ?

Operation Groundswell (OG):
Operation Groundswell is an NGO, that through a community of engaged individuals, works in various developing countries to promote, empower and develop positive change in areas such as education, health, social dynamics and environmental sustainability. The organization is centered on a collaborative approach;

“OG is unique for not only having the ability to hand-deliver the funds raised, but also can develop tangible projects that the participant you are supporting with your donation can see to fruition.”
This is the community contribution, funds that go directly to local NGO’s and community partners in Ghana. Deciding where to allocate these community contributions uses a consensus decision process occurring among program participants as part of a final debrief in Ghana.
Learn more.

The Global Health Program :
Over the course of the 6 week program I will explore both the health needs as well as the health care delivery model in the Ghanaian context. This will include working in various capacities with multiple local NGO’ s in both urban and rural settings (see map). The program seeks to foster and develop critical thinking and leadership skills, helping to construct a deeper conceptualization of the multifaceted nature of health and wellness in Ghana.

Want a taste?
An organization started by alumni of OG in 2010 to support rural farmers in sustainable means of livelihood. Food security and sovereignty, growing up through community roots are the goals of this organization.
A hospital in the Upper East region of Ghana, meeting the primary health needs of approximately 80,000 people in the area with only one doctor.
The 2010 naissance of Ghana medical help, founded by an OG alumnus, seeks to support District Hospitals in access to basic medical equipment. Our role will involve needs assessment and distribution research.
HEPENS, started in 2008 by a Ghanaian emergency nurse, focus is on public and environmental health promotion in Cape Coast, Ghana. Activities include community outreach, awareness and education, as well as healthcare access.


What the program means for me:
Participation in the program will be an opportunity to engage in meaningful and provocative learning, immersing myself in a new and unfamiliar context while collaborating, with local organizations and other project participants. I hope to apply and develop the theoretical principles integral with my academic studies, with direct experiential learning. From these learning foundations, I hope to build a deeper appreciation and better understanding for the complexity of health from which to not only to critically assess health care systems, but also to move forward towards positive change.

Bringing together a diverse team of participants from multiple backgrounds and perspectives epitomizes for me the ideal program and learning environment. While my current academic studies limit the duration of my travels, my hope is that by means of group travel and discussion, together we can construct a more holistic and comprehensive understanding in the short time frame.

I am eager to learn from the wide range of contributors and ideas encompassed by this program and further both my personal and community leadership skills.


Your role?
Community Contribution= your ticket to Ghana!
Get engaged!
While you may not be on the ground in Ghana, follow my experiences via my blog.
Read and comment on my blog.
Have a thought or opinion about some of the work we are doing, or the NGO’s we are working with?
Let me know!
Ultimately, I will be deciding where the community contribution goes, and this is your opportunity to have your voice heard!
I am not asking for a lung or even an arm or a leg, but every little contribution helps to reach my goal.

Community contribution ($750) + program fee ($2755)
Community contribution ($750): Goes directly to local Ghanaian NGO related to health. Having interacted with various organizations over the preceding weeks of the placement, this money will be allocated by my group
Program fee:
Read more about where your donations will go:
What can I offer you?1. A voice. Where do you want the community contribution to go?
2. Vicarious participation in my travels through blog postings, and newsletter updates;
3. Art. Fine art prints, jewelry and originals of my art work in accordance with pledge amounts; Vicarious participation in my travels through blog postings, and newsletter updates;
3. Recognition in newsletters, social media, blog posts to significant donors;
4. Contact post trip to share my experiences in public presentations, or events;
5. Sweat. My sweat! I will match all dollars with kilometers running and/or cycling Dollars for Art
Dollars for art!
$50: Grab bag: one print (9 x 11”) See Erika’s artwork
$70: Your choice from selected prints(9 x 11”)
$100: Original (9 x 11”)
$150: One hand drawn and crafted necklace See Erika’s hand made jewlery
$200: ‘Ganesha’; Inspired from my trip to India 18×24” print
$1000: One original painting
Japanese Maple. Original acrylic on canvas, 18″ x 24″

The countdown is on: 177 days to go!

Thank you for your time and consideration, and please do not hesitate to contact me at:


2 thoughts on “Ghana!

  1. Pingback: Two months to go! | The little artichoke

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