April 2015


DJ Aries Up for Ahlan Award in UAE!

Vote Now for DJ Aries to win Best Club DJ in Dubai at Ahlan Awards

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In the short time of DJ Aries has been  in Dubai she’s had a blast and to her surprise, the little firecracker has been shortlisted in the category for ‘BEST CLUB DJ’ in Dubai for the Ahlan Awards (UAE equivalent to Heat Magazine). Never in a million years did she think this would happen. If you could please show support for the movement of Modern African music going worldwide, she would appreciate your votes.

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. Here’s the website to vote, AhlanAwards.com, use the hashtag #AhlanAwards and tag @AhlanMagazine on Instagram and @AhlanLive on Twitter

2. Register, it only takes a few seconds

3. Go to the 7th category and DJ Aries is number 7! Then CLICK!

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In the meantime, youc enjoy this mix dedicated to Dubai whilst she makes her travels elsewhere in the world. Content coming soon!

https://soundcloud.com/dj_aries/dubaiafrohousemix

You may catch the Afrofusion DJ here in London for a spell. Or, Ghana, Europe, Thailand. Who knows…

Remember to VOTE here: AhlanAwards.com
Me Firi Ghana (@Me_FiRi_GHANA)

Twi, Ga, Fanti or Ewe – lets learn!!

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Lost In Translation, an investigative documentary which aired a few months ago on OHTV highlighted a predicament in the British-Ghanaian community in the UK – we were at risk f losing our rich cultural heritage and identity due the decline of Ghanaian languages. The documentary highlighted a growing trend of British born Ghanaians unable to speak any of the local languages primarily due to their parents or older generation failing to pass on the languages.

So if you’re in that category – a British born Ghanaian unable to speak you mother tongue such as Twi, Ga, Fante or Ewe, then fret not because  help is at hand!

The Ghanaian Language School in London offers classroom-based adult language courses in various Ghanaian languages such as Twi, Fanti, Ga and Ewe. The courses are offered on a part time basis and you have the option of a 10 or 20 week course. The lessons last two hours and takes place once a week, so it won’t cause any major interruptions of you have a busy schedule. Alternatively, the Ghanaian Language School also the Coffee Shop course – where classes are limited to just 5 people per session.

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However if the classroom setting doesn’t appeal to you, the school also offers private tuition for a more personalized individual learning experience.

For those of you who have businesses in Ghana and wish to learn the local languages, the school also offer corporate courses and interpretation services for businesses, charities, government bodies and private clients.

So if you’ve always wanted to learn how to speak a Ghanaian language then this is the perfect opportunity for you. There are still a few spaces left so head to their website to register your place on the course now!

http://theghanaianlanguageschool.com/our-services/adult-language-courses/

 

Yaa Nyarko (@yaayaa_89)

Go Getters launch leadership programme….

Are you always talking about building a successful business in Africa?

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GoGetters is building a trusted network and are excited to be launching an invaluable leadership programme called ‘Less Talk, More Action’ (LTMA) aimed at entrepreneurs who recognise the urgency of utilising their potential now, both in their home environment and in Africa. This is the first time this unique programme is being run and if selected you will join as a founding fellow of the GoGetters movement.

  • Do you lack a network of business leaders committed to Africa who you trust and support you to realise your goals?
  • Do you want support to overcome business and personal hurdles, generate new ideas and reinforce your personal resilience?
  • Do you crave interaction with likeminded people who will reenergise you, get you to where you want to be quicker and keep you on track to reach your goals? Take action now if..
  • You want to be equipped with the tools to allow you to realise / unleash your strengths and reinforce your personal resilience;
  • You want to gain valuable business and personal insights from a network of like-minded GoGetters;
  • You are running your own business (or want to start one up) in Africa in the near future;
  • You want to build a toolkit of resources that enable you to overcome business and personal challenges;
  • You want to create an effective accountability system to keep you focused towards establishing a successful business; and
  • You want to develop a network of peers who will be in Africa to support you as you grow your business.

Take action, click on ‘find out more’ and we’ll share the full programme information and application with you. We will also add you to our newsletter.

GoGetters is a members’ only entrepreneurial community of ambitious opportunity makers, who want to or are running their own business in Africa. Our community is a trusted peer network of members committed to helping each other to keep growing – personally and professionally.

 Me Firi Ghana (@Me_FiRi_GHANA)

Introducing Pamela Sakyi…..

Meet Writer, Producer and Director of New TV Documentary; “British Ghanaians: Lost In Translation

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Multitalented British Ghanaian Pamela Sakyi has her finger in a lot of pies including singing, playing guitar, video editing, and owning a small Christian Media Production company “SparkleLight Productions”.  She’s worked in the Media Industry for over 10 years, working on content for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, BBC LDN, Jazz FM, Water Aid, OH TV and many more organizations. However, in the last 3 years she’s turned her hand towards producing and directing. In that time she has written and produced her first feature-length documentary British Ghanaians: Lost In Translation”, which premiered on OH TV on Ghana Independence Day last month.

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She was given the opportunity to produce a documentary with a focus on Ghana and there was only one thing that instantly came to mind! she was a British Ghanaian who could not speak a Ghanaian language fluently and because of this she faced many different challenges over many years. Such challenges have included: not being able to speak with her older and younger relatives in Ghana, being ridiculed by Ghanaians in Britain who can speak their Ghanaian languages fluently and struggling to establish her identity as British and Ghanaian, whilst growing up.

Over the years working in the Media Industry Pamela realised a recurrent theme when she met other successful British Ghanaians in different industries – the majority could not speak their Ghanaian languages fluently. She researched the long-term effects of this and soon recognised that there is a current problem of Language Endangerment amongst British Ghanaians in the UK. If we don’t act now, Ghanaian languages in the UK could effectively die out in the future.

For Pamela meeting and working with Ortis Deley (The Gadget Show, Channel 5) was a ‘meeting of minds’. Ortis also of Ghanaian heritage, but cannot fluently speak any Ghanaian languages either. Thankfully we’ve had a great response to the documentary and to Ortis’ story. As she had previously hoped for by writing this documentary, so many British Ghanaians and older Ghanaians have acknowledged the issues and have been inspired to contribute positively, to help preserve Ghanaian languages and the rich Ghanaian cultural heritage in the UK and beyond.

FB: www.facebook.com/britishghanaianslostintranslation

TWITTER: @SparkleLightPro & @BritishGH_LIT

CATCH THE REPEAT OF “BRITISH GHANAIANS: LOST IN TRANSLATION” MONDAY 4TH MAY 2015 9:30PM on OH TV (SKY 199/ FREEVIEW 244 & WWW.OHTV.CO.UK/LIVE).

Me Firi Ghana (@Me_FiRi_GHANA)

Mista Sliva Let it off EP Launch Review….

 

Mr Kutu Sa Let’s it off at his EP Launch in London

So this past bank holiday Monday I was afforded the chance to round of my Easter weekend in style by attending the launch of Mista Silva’s new EP, Let It Off!

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The night started with much excitement. I got dressed into my finest attire purchased straight from Ghana and made my way up to Stoke Newington. Seeing as I’m from Peckham and I don’t have a north London visa I spent the first half hour on arrival circling the area trying to find out where on earth the venue was!

Within the first 5 minutes I notice the man of the hour himself, Mista Silva enter the lobby sporting the Me Firi Ghana varsity jacket. Whilst I was thrilled to see him support the movement it makes the task of writing this review ever more nerve wracking! At this stage I’m pondering going up to him and asking if he remembers meeting me at BellaRoma nightclub in Accra early last year; however at the risk of looking like a fanboy I “stay in my lane” and go about my business.

Stepping in the venue I saw so many familiar faces from my time living in Accra, I felt like I was in an Osu nightclub! The place was full to the rafters as the crowd danced away to the sounds of Shatta Wale, Sarkodie and Bisa Kdei, waiting for the show to start.

The first act to take to the stage was a rapper by the name of Eugy (@EugyOfficial). Coincidently I had come across him a few days earlier when I shared his #BalenciagaFreestyle on twitter. His style is truly unique. He smoothly integrates both Twi and English into his songs and makes something that both the man on the block and in the village can vibe to! Among the rising popularity of UK Afrobeats, pioneered by people such as Mista Silva, Eugy has managed to find his own sound that falls somewhere in between hip-hop/grime and Afrobeats. Expect big things from this brother!

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Now I have to admit, the next artist to take to the stage was not familiar to me. However if you’re into your Afrobeats you’d have to have been living under a rock to not hear the song he performed! The artist was DJ Afro B (@DjAfroB) and the song was the masterpiece Baba God. The whole crowd erupted as we all in unison sang the chorus together! Whether singing in English or French this man tore it up! He quite expertly used a traditional African practice of using music to worship and has made it current and funky! You could vibe to this in both the Church and at carnival. His two amazing dancers on either side of him completed the spectacle. Well done sir!

As we approached the headline act we were treated to a Kutu Sa dance off. Anyone whos tried (and failed in my instance) to learn how to do this dance will recognise the two guys who took to the stage from youtube.Over three rounds of Kutu Sa’ing later, the crowd could still not decide who was their winner! I suppose this just serves as a testament to how much they have mastered it!

At this stage you could sense the anticipation of the crowd to hear the man for whom we had all come to hear. The Kuta Sa dance off alongside the sounds being performed by the live band served as the perfect warm up for Mista Silva to grace the stage. He came to the stage in almost Fela-esque fashion, as the band reached a crescendo. In a flurry of energy he jumped on the stage and immediately got into performance of the lead track from his EP “Goes Down”. There wasn’t a soul in the building that didn’t feel the music and let it take over them! Everyone vibed from the energy that Silva was radiating. The greatest respect you can give an artist is that just by watching them perform a crowd can’t help but get on their feet and dance. Silva seemed to be able to do this naturally! As he continued to perform each song from the EP the crowds energy never waned! His last performance was of the bonus track, Nyame ah y3. This for me was undoubtedly the highlight of the show. Performing almost exclusively in Twi or pidgin English, Silva perfectly represented himself and his musical identity in this track. In his own words he “stands representing the UK and Ghana Music scene, but I stand here as a black star”. I felt the track Nyame ah y3 perfectly encapsulated that message. A special mention must go out to the live band who made the event a spectacle of African/UK music. I’m sure I wasn’t the only one who left the event thinking that Afrobeats  with a live band is truly something special!

As we wound down, just to demonstrate the humility of the man, Silva ended by giving thanks to the people that helped him get to where he is and also by giving a prayer. This humility and dedication to his craft will surely see him go far and remain at the top of the UK Afrobeats scene! A truly pioneering artist Silva has played his part in the rise of pride among African communities in the UK of their culture. Keep repping GH, keep repping Africa and keep repping the UK! Most importantly keep doing you because you’re doing us all proud!

Malachi Mukete (@MallyMukete)

Introducing Amon Ogyiri & Ashantibeads

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Ashantibeads was founded by US-based Ghanaian Amon Ogyiri in 2012. He was moved to found Ashantibeads having observed what he perceived as a lack of recognition for the African culture in the world. “There is plenty of beauty in Africa which still hasn’t been exposed to the rest of the world,” Amon reflects. “My mission was to display as much beauty from African culture as possible, through art & fashion. “

 

The hallmark of the brand are the trademark African bead bracelets of various colours which are adorned with a Gye Nyame charm. Ashantibeads’ African Beads are dedicated to gratifying the most sophisticated jewellery consumers, designed for all people from different backgrounds to admire what Africa has to offer. Amon was inspired to make these bracelets by his role model Russell Simmons, who had created a green bracelet whose sales would produce proceeds which would go on to help improve the quality of life of people in Africa. Amon’s idea was to follow-on from this by creating a bracelet for Ghana and also do his own bit to contribute to the advancement of the Ghanaian People.  Amon has been able to use a percentage of the profits from Ashantibeads to work with a non-profit organization in Ghana called Youth Icons of Ghana” to help build libraries in less-privileged rural communities in Ghana.

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The beads have enduring all-encompassing appeal, with people from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds having purchased their own bracelets. The beauty of the colours available, and the mystery of the enigmatic “Gye Nyame charm, are an undeniably attractive concoction. “The beads represent the history, culture and pride of Ghana – my homeland,” explains Amon. “For example, the black Ashanti African Beads are an emblem for the people; a great build for customers who seek amongst their collection of jewelleries one that graces their acquired taste. The green Ashanti African Beads embodies the fruitful land of Africa, and so forth.”

Many celebrities have showed interest in Ashantibeads. such as Angela Simmons (daughter of Rev Run of RUNDMC) American based rappers Nipsey Hussle and Shad Moss (aka Bow Wow), the late Ghanaian singer Castro da Destroyer, superstar Ghanaian rapper Sarkodie,  Ghanaian boxer Joshua Clottey,  and the vibrant Nigerian singer Davido, amongst many others!

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The celebrity endorsements have gone hand-in-hand with ashantibeads impressive social media machine in increasing awareness of the brand. People who see or hear about the products usually have an urge to tell others about what Ashantibeads are doing for Africa with the brand, with Instagram and twitter helping extend reach to many people across the world.  Customers usually upload photos of themselves wearing their products on Instagram which allows their followers to see Ashantibeads’ work.

Despite the level of success to-date, Amon does not feel like he has reached the point at which he can say he is successful with the brand. “I have more things to do and accomplish before I can say I have been successful. The mission is not over.”

So what are the plans and dreams for the future of Ashantibeads? “We have just released Africa’s $100 dollar shirt designed by me,” informs Amon. “It is an extension of the Ashantibeads brand. I feel that the ‘Gye Nyame’ symbol has been depreciated and taken for granted for a very long time. I saw the value in this symbol.  It’s about being proud. Africans need to realize the value of our culture.”

You can view and purchase your own Ashantibeads products from www.ashantibeads.com

 Jermaine Bamfo (@Dr_Jabz27)

Forever Young, Forever Royal: The Story of Liesel Angel ..

Every doctor has that one patient who left an indelible mark on their career, an ever-enduring influence which has affected their practice forever. Mine was Liesel Angel….

 

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 It was a normal morning on a paediatric ward. And following a ward round I set about my jobs for the day. First thing, I was asked to visit a side-room to try putting in an IV line into a patient, as the nurse that morning had failed and the patient wasn’t in the best of moods. So I entered in…

 I saw Mrs. Lovia Ofori-Agyemang for the first time, sat in a chair, gorgeous albeit worn-out, with tired yet bright eyes. And on the bed, covered in glitter and with crayons sprawled out in front of her, was Lovia’s daughter – the little Queen herself – Liesel Angel. Cute beyond compare, her eyes broad and wide due to the underlying disease process which I later discovered was Neuroblastoma. This Queen, though adorable, was not in the mood to suffer fools this morning.

So I rolled my sleeves up, put my stethoscope to one side, and sat at Liesel’s feet in her kingdom of glitter. With the soundtrack of children’s TV playing in the background, Liesel slowly let me into her world. She taught me a lot about rapport-building, breaking down barriers, understanding the unfathomable human capacity to endure pain. And she let me put the line in. Eventually. I had only one shot – thank God I was successful. It would’ve been off with my head otherwise.

During all of this, Mrs. Lovia had filled me in on the pertinent details of Liesel’s story. Little Liesel Angel was a victim of a cancer exclusive to children called High Risk Neuroblastoma (Stage IV) – a cancerous tumour arising from particular nerve cells, which run in a chain-like fashion up the back of the child’s abdomen and chest and into the skull. Children affected by Neuroblastoma have one of the lowest survival rates of all childhood cancers.

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The first symptoms of Neuroblastoma are often vague, making diagnosis difficult. It often spreads before becoming symptomatically apparent, meaning 50 to 60 percent of all cases present with metastases (spread). An abdominal tumour may cause a swollen belly. A chest tumour can cause breathing problems. A tumour pressing on the spinal cord can cause limb weakness. A tumour in the bones around the eyes can cause distinct bruising and swelling.

After going through a year of treatment, Liesel had been declared free of the disease. But it returned, with a vengeance, and there was nothing else the medical professionals could do at that point. Neuroblastoma stole Liesel away from her kingdom on 3rd February 2012 at the tender age of 3, causing her to remain forever young. Forever unrealised. The Queen was no more. If only I had some of Liesel’s royal resolve the day I heard the news…

Receiving the vision to establish a charity to provide relief for children faced with life-threatening ailments and their families, Liesel’s untimely passing triggered her family into action. Founded by Liesel’s mother Lovia Ofori-Agyemang, and father Francis Appiah-Boakye, the Liesel Angel Trust is a not-for-profit organisation that provides practical hands-on support and relief for critically-ill children and their families: providing advocacy, counselling, domestic help, and personal support while understanding that it’s not just the patient who must endure the stress of battle, but those who love them too. Donations allow the Trust to purchase equipment, fund research and provide better facilities for terminally-ill children that would otherwise be unaffordable under the NHS. The Trust also supplies vital support to hospitals in Africa who help children with cancer.

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Pursuits of the Trust include the One Touch Transport Service (which helps transport patients and families to appointments, and drop siblings at school), subsidized luncheon vouchers, Domestic support to keep the upkeep of homes, Bereavement Support, Educational Support to increase awareness in communities, and Wellbeing Massage Therapy. Friends of the Trust are ordinary people committed to supporting through various fundraising activities, from cake sales, to charity sing-alongs, to talent shows, and much more. The Liesel Angel Trust aims to help others alleviate the load Liesel’s own family must have felt when they had fought their own battle.

Liesel’s angel still shines brighter than ever through her legacy of the Liesel Angel Trust. She was a bright little girl, a Queen who was snatched away by a terrible disease which tried its hardest to put out her light forever.

It failed.

Liesel reigns on. Forever young, forever royal, her influence is still carrying weight and making a different to countless others. And you can do your bit to ensure that her star continues to shine on, and leaves as indelible a mark on more lives as it did mine.

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In memory of Liesel Angel Appiah Boakye: Aug 2008 – Feb 2012

You can contact Liesel Angel Trust offices on 020 8538 0185 during the hours of 10-5pm Monday to Friday. Alternatively, you can email enquiries to info@lieselangeltrust.org or write to Liesel Angel Trust, The Vista Business Centre, 50 Salisbury Road, Hounslow, Middlesex TW4 6JQ

Jermaine Bamfo (@Dr_Jabz27)

An Exclusive Lyric Dedicated To Me Firi Ghana….Written By Adwoa Asiedu

There is More….

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More than what we see.

More than what we hear.

There is more to our identity.

This is why we proudly say

Me Firi Ghana

 

Connecting you to Ghana, taking you to another realm

To experience the unexpected, this is our mission!images

Call us a new wave who will explode, we’re not afraid.

With new eyes that see beyond, we’re not ashamed.

With one heart, with one mind

Run with us and proudly say

Me Firi Ghana

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There is more, more. (There is more)

There is more, more. (There is more)

There is more, more. (There is more)

 

Adwoa Asiedu (@Adwoa Asiedu777)

LAUNCHED: The Full Future of Ghana Deluxe Publication

THE 2015 FUTURE OF GHANA TOP 30 U30

 

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The OFFICIAL Deluxe Publication is now available.

The Publication includes Ghana’s Top 30 U30 from around the world, forward thinking articles and interviews from pioneering CEO’s, Directors & organizations sharing their vision for Ghana and Africa. It can be read here

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The Publication was launched at the Ghana High Commission Hq (London) on Friday 27th March 2015. See below for Myriam Osei’s (@AngelPeacejoy) video blog review:

To advertise in the publication or to become an exclusive distribution partner,please contact our Director of Communications, Ben Anim-Antwi at: bantwi@mefirighana.com

The Me Firi Ghana Members Network will be launching soon… #FutureofGhana = Responsibility

Me Firi Ghana (@Me_FiRi_GHANA)