A Safehouse for Children
by John Gershman
My favorite places in Ghana reflect a commitment to support the disenfranchised and support communities often stigmatized and without political voice.
One place I would like to highlight is the Jaynii Streetwise Foundation in Jamestown, Accra. Founded by a husband (Nii) and wife (Jay) who met while in a performing group of dancers and musicians, the Foundation since 2007 has provided a drop-in center, housing for orphans and kids with difficult family situations, music and dance lessons, and a playground for children in Jamestown, one of Accra’s poorest neighborhoods. About 25 children sleep there regularly and untold others drop-in after school and on weekends to play and hang out. They finance the foundation with musical performances, selling hand-made bags, and donations. A visit to the foundation for a drumming and dancing lesson (which support the foundation), nourishes the body with exercise and the soul, with wonderful music and time spent with Jay, Nii, and the children they support.
About the author: John Gershman is a Clinical Professor of Public Service at NYU’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service and co-teaches a course on Hunger and Food Security in Ghana every summer. He finds that grilled tilapia tastes best in Accra.