Tag: GHRBS


Flying the flag for Ghana – meet fencer Yasmine Fosu

When one thinks about sports in Ghana, football, rugby and boxing are perhaps one of the first things that immediately jumps to mind. But what about fencing? Yes, fencing. Did you know that there’s currently a young female Ghanaian making waves and breaking barriers in that sporting field, representing Ghana at international competitions? And she’s only just turned 16!

Enter fencer Yasmine Nana Serwah Fosu, who has already competed in several national and international competitions, including the British Public Schools Championships, the Cadet European Championships, the Mediterranean Championships and the Commonwealth Fencing Championships, and now has the 2020 Olympic Games firmly in her sights.

byc SILVER MEDAL

Yasmine with her medal

And Yasmine is not just competing, she’s WINNING! At such a young age her list of achievements is extensive. At 14 she had already broken the North African monopoly on the sport by taking bronze at the African Cadet Championship in 2014, and was the first black African nation in any category in either gender to make podium at Cadtes U17, Juniors U20 and Seniors in the history of the sport.  She won gold at the Champion at Arms British Public Schools Championships U14 in 2014, and has claimed gold again at the 2016 Champion at Arms British Public Schools Championships U16. By special invitation of the Mediterranean Confederation, Yasmine finished 7th in the Mediterranean Championships, and she’s the youngest ever to finish 8th in the U20 Junior African Championships as well as the youngest ever to finish 10th in the Senior category at the African Championships. She won silver at the 2016 British Youth Championship U16. Oh, and she came 10th at the 2015 Commonwealth Fencing Championships in Cape Town. The 16yr old is currently ranked 116 in the world Seniors, the youngest person to rank that high.

Yasmine’s accomplishments at her age are made the more remarkable by the fact that fencing is a sport that requires not only physical training and strength, but also draws immensely on the fencer’s tactical skills, skills that take years to develop and hone. So to see her rank so high in the sport at her age is nothing short of amazing.

Yasmine in action

Yasmine (left) in action

Yasmine, who specialises in the épée form of fencing, discovered the sport at the age of 8 and by 11 she was offered a scholarship to start her fencing training at Plymouth College, which boasts Olympians such as Tom Daley. Following another scholarship to Millfield School, Yasmine turned down the opportunity to represent Great Britain, choosing rather to represent Ghana at international competitions. She’s had her fair share of bigotry, often being the only black African AND female in a dominantly white sport competing at an international level. But this experience has only made her stronger. Though she didn’t qualify for the 2016 Rio Games, Yasmine is determined to make history by representing Ghana at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, and at the rate that she’s going, we at Me Firi Ghana know this girl can!

By Yaa Fremah (@yaa_fremah))

Introducing Catherine Arhin..

The Woman behind Arhinarmah

Me Firi Ghana caught up with Catherine Arhin the founder of Arhinarmah.  An ambitious lady in her  early thirties. Catherine was born and raised in West London, but her family originate from Assin Kumasi in Ghana. She gives us an insight into how she got started, her love for her culture and what’s next.

1) What is Arhinarmah and how did it begin? Arhinarmah is London based homeware/ home decor brand offering African accented products for your home such as handmade cushions, lampshades and bespoke furniture. We also offer a upholstery service, and provide bespoke pieces of furniture from scratch (including the wooden framework). All our items are handmade to order and we use traditional methods of joinery in the production of all our pieces . We’re based in London where I head up a team of 5 staff.

Arhinarmah was ‘conceived’ in January 2012. I developed it after working for a variety of private and public sector organisations over a 10 year period. I wanted to apply my first hand experience in business to create an entity that was a reflection of my cultural identity. My parents are Ghanaian, so I’m fiercely proud of my heritage and culture. At the same time I’m very much a Londoner and take great pride in having grown up in this city. London is one of the world’s creative hubs. It’s a veritable melting pot of cultures and ‘old England’ is synonymous for its quality in relation to textiles and production methods. The label combines the quality, with the colours, symbols and vibrancy of Ghanaian culture.

 2) How did you discover and  explore your creative side? It was always there. As a five year old I would draw on walls whenever I ran out of paper. As an 8 year old I would write stories involving my classmates – they loved them so much the teacher would keep them in the book corner for everyone to read. As a teenager I harboured dreams of being an interior designer, a stylist, a hairdresser. I’m always experimenting with colour so my house is a show home – each room has it’s own colour palette. My living room was Navy well before it became popular. I suppressed my creativity for a long time after I had my son and never considered going into a creative industry as a ‘serious’ profession. The expectation when I was growing up was for me to become a Lawyer, Doctor or Accountant. I feel that people often have to make a decision between taking up an occupation that ‘pays the bills’ versus taking on a ‘softer’ occupation that they might enjoy. I did that for a long time.

3) Could you talk us through Arhinarmah’s collections? They are all named after places in Ghana or people who have had an impact on me in some way;

The Joseph collection: There are three generations of ‘Joseph’ within my family. My Grandfather (the label muse) was called Joseph Armah. My Mother was called Josephine, and my son is also called Joseph.

The Jamestown collection: Jamestown is the Ghanaian coastal town that my mother’s family settled in after relocating from Aburi.

The Accra Collection: Features a distinctive Kente print pattern – and the bright colours represent vibrancy, hustle and bustle of Ghana’s biggest city.

4) What do you love about your culture? Ghana: The colours. The textiles. The symbols. The tradition. Afrobeats. Old school Ghana parties. London: The mobility. The choice. The diversity.

 5) How has Arhinarmah become involved with WAM, & why must others also get involved? This is demonstrated in the inspirational talks that I get involved in (in schools and at start up networking events) and also in us being awarded the Blue Butterfly by award winning organisation Positive Luxury. We began donating on a monthly basis to the WAM Campaign from June 2013 mainly because it shares many similarities with our organisation (ie affecting positive change and having a connection with both Ghana and the UK).

6)With Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, what would you highly recommend from Arhinarmah?I’d recommend any of the items in our Ashanti collection. We product lampshades and cushions in this print and it’s red which fits in with the tone of the occasion. From a male perspective it’s one of our best sellers so women *hint hint* – so don’t let Valentines Day be one sided – get him a unique gift that he’ll really cherish this year.

 7) What do you want to achieve from Arhinarmah? I’d like to achieve the respect for African fabrics in the home and ethnic inspired home decor that you see for well established luxury brands such as Missoni or Versace home. My grandfather’s name was Joseph Armah – he was (and still is) the muse behind the brand. I’d like his name and legacy to live on through this venture. I never intended for this to just be about ‘selling cushions’ – from day one, my intention has been to create a worldwide homeware label that people with an interest or affinity with Africa can truly be proud of.

8) What does the future hold  for Arhinarmah? We are now looking at branching out into the US and Europe.

9)Could you share with us any words of wisdom? Create the highest grandest vision of yourself because ultimately, you become what you believe.

10) How can readers, find out more about yourself and Arhinarmah? You can find our products at www.arhinarmah.co.uk . We’re on all social media channels Facebook: @arhinarmah/London, Twitter:@arhinarmah, Instagram &Pinterest: @arhinarmah, Linkedin:@arhinarmah and we’re also on Google+ and Linkedin 11)

Tracey Kusi (@moitreyc)

Introducing Ajoa Dwomoh-Bonsu

The Make up artist behind the Brand

untitled

 

Ajoa Dwomoh-Bonsu a UK based freelance makeup artist created Boco Beauty, a makeup brand for black women of darker complexion with the primary aim to allow these women to feel more inclusive and catered to. With the idea that every woman should be able to embrace her beauty, Ajoa launched her make up brand Boco Beauty in 2013, with the focus on accessibility, affordability and range.

Me Firi Ghana managed to catch up with the 21 year old Ajoa during a short interview to find out more.

Can you tell us a bit more about yourself? I’m a beauty and fashion enthusiast. I enjoy singing, dancing, and shopping. In three words my family would describe me as ambitious, clever and caring.

Tell us more about your company Boco Beauty? Boco Beauty is a company I started in summer 2013; it is targeted at darker skinned black women. Boco (for short) promotes self-confidence we aim to combat the self-hatred that dark skin black women may have based on society’s perceptions of beauty. I started Boco based on my own experiences, so I turned my frustrations into an idea. I felt like darker skinned women were being marginalised and I wanted to offer cosmetics for darker skinned women. Also, I wanted these women to feel they are catered to and that their skin tone is beautiful too. As I did more research I saw there was a major need for this and that is how Boco began.

How did it all start? Boco started when I was applying for a placement at my university. There was an opportunity on the placements website to set up your own business with funding, mentoring and training. I thought this was a perfect way to get my idea off of the ground. Having my own makeup brand was always a dream of mine so when the opportunity came I couldn’t ignore it. I had to present my business idea to a panel, and luckily they believed in my idea to allow me to pursue it.

What does Boco stand for? Boco is the Bo from my surname Bonsu, and co from cosmetics.

What exactly do you do? I am student in my placement year running my business.

So tell us what are your future aspirations? My future aspirations are to come out with a wider range of makeup products and have a Boco standalone store worldwide in places like Debenhams, Selfridges and Sephora. I would also love to have my own patisserie or bakery, as I love to bake.

Where were you raised? I was raised in Milton Keynes.

Are both your parents of Ghanaian descent? Yes they are.

Which part of Ghana are they from? They are from the Ashanti Region.

Can you speak any Ghanaian language? I understand Twi and can speak bits here and there!

Are you proud to state Me Firi Ghana? Yes I am. Even though I was not born in Ghana I am glad to be from there. I would not want to be from anywhere else, there’s just something special about Ghana, it has got to be the best country in Africa!

untitled 1

To find out more about Boco Beauty’s products please visit the website – http://www.bocobeauty.com/#

Nora Mistersky (@Ms_Nora_M)

Autism awareness

GUBA to hold Autism event in London

 

dentaa autism

 

Dentaa is an active figure both in Ghana as well as the UK –  I tell you this multitalented woman deserves a round of applause , a busy woman and yet the hard work continues .  Aside from her previous acting career and presenting, she is also known as the founder of the Ghana UK Based Achievements (GUBA Awards), as well as the GUBA foundation charity. The GUBA foundation was established whilst working on the GUBA awards. Let’s just say there’s plenty more blossoms to come from this wonderful lady.

Whilst on her journey she realised that alongside the awards for recognition and celebrations , deep within the Ghanaian community lies unanswered questions regarding the needs of the people , needs important to  us all such as: :  disability, education, poverty and health.

Autism

… Why?  Her aim is to change people’s perceptions of Autism merely as a Disability, but get people to think of it as a different ability. Through this wonderful event she simply asks for: Honesty, support and for us to be open-minded, this way people can gain access to services available to them.

Aim:

Connect & support families with Autism, through providing support & guidance to carers

Deliver culturally sensitive Autism training and provide awareness to the specified community

Highlight achievements, gifts and unknown talents of people with Autism

 

The Autistic Event

This is a family friendly event and suitable for all age groups. If you just want to gain knowledge or an insight this event would be just great for you.

Venue: Bernie Grants Arts centre

Date: Saturday 27th April 2013

For more information visit : http://www.gubaawards.co.uk/guba-foundation-autism-event/

 

Contact:

Twitter @Dentaa_show

Facebook Dentaa show

We’re all ignorant… but if we take the time to educate ourselves. If we think differently we can kill ignorance.

 

By Cloudia

Weekly Insight: Ola the Poet

“Modes of Transport”

Understanding that life is what you make it and the meaning of success is how you define it.

Education of the mind whether academic or self taught via experience is not measured by your grades or what you’ve been through but by your persistence.

You see Wisdom hails where faith begins and mental strength comes from those who endure through struggle.

If what is said to be responsibility the ability to respond to situations effectively then problems shouldn’t be in existence.

There comes a time when realisation hits the frontal lobe and faces you head on with reality.

Worrying about how you’re going to reach your destination with no materialistic view of getting there, we forget that we have been given a pair of limbs which translate to modes of transport.

 So see your destination in sight and pave through your journey because as much as life has become difficult even in daily living at least we have a pair of mode of transport to get us from seeing to achieving.

By Ola the Poet

Weekly Insight: Ola the Poet

The ‘What If’ Factor

 

If to a believer you are no more than an illusion of faith and to a dreamer you are a figment of imaginations past. Then what is a soul that lacks belief and hope?


In the time of need where the skies trimmings are purple and gold and your lips echo defragmented speeches of light and love, where do I lay my burdens If the sky already has a barrel filled with scattered promises and sheltered dreams.

 

If emptied souls relied on weak minds to fix them, the turning of the moon will be an eclipse during sunrise and mountains will flourish with snow and fog. A smoke screen to cover the insecurities of which is carried by many.

 

If in an ideal realm lavender cured the scents of our promiscuity and rose gold covered our envious hearts. Would we be wild and reckless with love and dreams, with sight and vision or would we be basking in creations deep as Gods mantle piece.

 

Will the emancipation of men and women be told vicariously through others who Willingly delve in greatness or would perish in silence because of our own impediments.

 

Redemption comes with hope and hope with belief. Belief with faith and faith in high power.

 

So….. If to a believer you are no more than an illusion of faith and to a dreamer you are a figment of imaginations past. Then what is a soul that lacks belief and hope?

By Ola the Poet

Weekly Insight – Ola the Poet

No Condemnation

We haven’t spoken in a while,
I have so many questions but not enough answers,
I reach for the manual but I lack understanding,
My lips are sealed,
So I guess its time to let it rip,
My biro leaks questions of a lost child,
In my dream,
The king and I had scenes in which we played,
I believed in the wonder that is him,
No!
I’m not Alice,
Jst a soul who’s joy has soiled through many sheets of scattered failures.

Truth be told I am angry,
In rage,
Like the ash that spreads through Iceland,
I am infected by diseases of this world,
Tell me!
Tell me why you sit on the throne and allow Agnes to die?
Or why Damilola went through turmoil before you erased him?
Why did you let Haiti crumble? And let Katrina loose?
Why did you let war rip in Freetown, Sierra Leone?
Answer me,

Yes its true I do things I shouldn’t do,
so I front,
Like a hologram,
I can’t touch you, but I should trust you,
Trust you with my life as it deteriorates whilst you watch me go
through invigorating pain.
You say you do everything for a reason,
What reason do you have to allow those in Afghanistan to die in the
hands of the Americans?
You hear my thoughts each day of the ticking clock,
You see my battle with pornography,
Yet you do nothing,

Yeah I think his buff
I’d lash him,
Sexual thoughts whilst in church, The sermon of the pastor is a blur,
As brother Ayo who sits opposite me wears revealing shirt of all his muscles,
A bulge poking from him T M Lewin trousers,
Stupidly I confide in a sister and brother is Christ and they look at
me as though I’m filthy,

You hear my cries,
But you don’t comfort me at night,
You say I won’t give you what you can’t Handle,
Erm! I don’t think so,
Do you jst reveal in my aches and pains?

You see I adore you,
seriously I wanna be like you,
But I’m washed in sin and I need your blood to wash me clean,
or do I?
Would I rather enjoy the pleasures I roll in?
How can I believe in someone I cannot see?
Then you whisper keep the faith it will manifest,
In a new rage I drown,
I slip through sage,
Return through the wardrobe like the kids of Narnia,
To see the chapter “faith without works is dead”

So I begin to pray,
Speaking in a tongue only he can understand,
Bound by his blood,
I am cornered,
By a serpent in sheepskin clothing.
I rebuke you that inderrs my progress,
For my faith teaches me strength and confidence.
In him I am free,
Like the dove that saws through the skies
My faith in him has no bounds. You see his word is bond and so I stick
to it for that is faith.
My manual to life is filled with the books of courage and wisdom,
Before I was born he knew me, Better than I know myself,
Each hair on my head,
Every footprint I made, He was there,
There with me he stood,
Through my failures,
So I go back each day frustration boils from within,
And John 3:16 and I become acquainted again…

By Ola the Poet

KWESI BOAKYE wins two BAFTA’s…

‘The Amazing World Of Gumball’

Wins 2 BAFTA Awards!

Kwesi_Boakye_Me_FiRi_GHANA_2I was in complete ‘SHOCK’ whilst stumbling over this article in which was featured on ‘The Ghana web website’, I recognised the cool animation  of Darwin a character from my favourite show ”The amazing world of Gumball’, a brand new international show on cartoon network combining 2D and 3D in a live action setting. My little Bro’s watch the show and dig it soo much!! I noticed that the show hides in silent humour, with cheeky story lines which is personally why I ADORE the show, the voice over especially is what actually caught my attention at first! The voice over of ‘DARWIN’ is extremely mysterious and so quirky you catch yourself deeply tuuuuuned into the show.

Hollywood’s CHILD of STARDOM of just 12 years  old – ‘KWESI BOAKYE‘ is the VOICE of DARWIN WATTERSON on ‘The Amazing World Of Gumball’, a brand new international show which follows the misadventures of 12 year old GUMBALL and his innocent naïve brother DARWIN.

Kwesi’s character used to be a family pet until he unravelled out legs, and became one of the wattersons. Sated by Daniel lennard, the executive producer, vice president of original development, Cartoon network

“My Favourite character has to be DARWIN, he’s real cute (amazing job by Kwesi Boakye) he’s full of surprising talents…!, in one episode he starts yodelling”!…..

The series received its prestigious BAFTA awards for the network, the show attracted huge amounts of children from 7-14 year olds loving up the show. 2012 already has strong and high promises for our Young, ‘KWESI BOAKYE‘, with future aspirations and higher aims; this young Ghanaian Boy is definitely a face to watch out for.

Well Done immensely ‘KWESI BOAKYE’

A FABULOUS role model for our young Ghanaian Teens worldwide!

By Trey’C

Weekly Insight: Ola the Poet – Lay!

“Lay your head down on my pillow. Feel the comfort caressing you into a state of  peace.


No longer feeling monogamous about your daily routines.
But falling in sync with the universe.


Connecting to synergy and exfoliating with passion.
Let it be that the lies you told are wiped into thin air as reality sets in and takes precedent.


As you inhale breaths of life and the scent of cold air and mist brushes your nasal.


Be aware that the seas of which your life wiped away are an exhibition in the sand of footprints and souls.


In front of s a fire place you burn your perplexed aura. Anticipating ease and warmth.


Like water on the verge of boiling point you see no reaction till steam evaporates and then only then does your inscription of history become evident and pure  oxygen becomes toxic.


Laughing gas becomes tear gas and you realise that NOBODY IS PERFECT.

Lay your head down on my pillow. Don’t close your eyes if you want to see your dreams come alive.


But you have to close your eyes to face your fears and live through the nightmares.


Be like the blind man who senses and reacts. Not like the privileged who see and procrastinate”


By Ola the Poet

Weekly Insight: Ola the Poet – Man…

Man…

From their roots you will know them” I heard a man say to stylishly glowing lady. From experience he had seen the ins and outs of a temple he conquered prior to his new found philosophy.

Expressing that he knew all the fruits of the spirit. So when conversation took place his senses escaped to pollute the propaganda he had just heard.

A woman has the right to do as she pleases“. Being seen and not heard wasn’t her motto. Her forte was to pleasure. But her strong will devoured her into an equilibrium. She had told him that life was her teacher and through her faults she understood the perplexed man. A man she envisioned as the world. One who rapes your dreams and feeds you lies through a straw which you so happily drink through.

Then I over-heard him say “you regurgitate what you have been spoon fed and you spit it back out with conviction. Feeling that nothing else could be the truth“. In a land where knowledge is power we believe that once applied we are in position to be great. Not knowing that your knowledge is restricted by those that produce the products you indulge in.

She looks at him as he preaches the laws of the Black Panther. Piercing his aura she tells him “by their roots you will know them”. Through Adam I know you. Man of the world I see you. Manipulating the ones who suffer painfully to carry you. I see you.

Man, the example of failed dreams and broken hearts, of eagerness and irresponsibility. The representation of the world we live in. “Man cannot be trusted“.

As he listened to her trembling voice and the passion that hailed from her, he realised that she wasn’t a woman that was to be seen and not heard. But a woman with a voice that must be heard. Amongst the midst in which two parallel worlds met. A sense of understanding and comfort reigned.

The realisation that both men and women can be heard coherently in a conducive environment was overwhelming.

By Ola the Poet