Wednesday, August 20, 2014


We are winding up our Ghana side of work and will return Aug. 26th to the U.S. and continue from that end.  
Hans Akostah

The three men we had formerly planned for an African E-Center, Hans, Michael and Adeola want to continue with their own "Ghana Enterprise Support" Business and Bob has been working to help them establish themselves and find their nitch.  Stephen Abu who is in business development in Africa will use this new sub business for his own consulting needs and they are exploring other possible ventures. This business support group plans to assist meta level businesses in their desires to grow, providing needed information and expertise, connect businesses with financial and human capital and assist with training.They have presented an MOU to Engage Now Africa which we hope to sign before leaving.
Adiola Gbadegessin
Michael Ankomah
We surely have enjoyed working with these men and plan to continue supporting their efforts


On the certificate side, the soonest a certificate will be able to be approved and implemented is January.  It is being structured to accommodate the specific needs of Ghana. That has taken some learning and understanding of Ghanaian culture, perceptions and attitudes. 

Sometimes our efforts take the form of  determining  what won't work and where changes need to be made..  It is not time and effort lost because of the valuable information that is accumulated.

Golden Sunbeam School - Site of the new Golden Sunbeam College of Science and Technology

The original purpose for our visit was to assist the Golden Sunbeam School, supply a Soy Cow and get it operating.  That has gone very well and is fulfilling it's purpose.  We are sure in the future the E-Center in Idaho and the BYU Idaho Agribusiness personnel will provide a wonderful program that fits the specific needs of the school and that the remaining improvements needed can be covered by the interns coming from BYU Idaho this fall.

 We fell in love with the Jakcint Academy and hope that we can raise some funds for them to finish their addition to reduce their class size (60) to a more managable (30).  We'd love to bring back books to help create a library for the school.

This is only about 2/3 of the 1st grade class.

 We love BYU Idaho and the Eastern Idaho Entrepreneurial Center and will always care about their growth and success and continue volunteering our services in their behalf

We realized from the outset that we needed to learn first.  We did a lot of listening and it has paid off.  We hope we can use those same skills in future ventures.

The people we met will be the treasure we take home in our hearts 

Elders Van Wagoner and Peterson

So many cute office people - 

Brandon Webster our "weekend son"

Ward members attending a baptism

John and Cynthia Koranteng, Owners of Jakcint Accademy - Inclusive and supportive - great hearts!

Contractor for Ensign College of Public Health

Emmanuel, Natasha and Rainy fed us and proviided transportantion on many occasions

"The Brethren"

Gifty Annon-Mensah - Summer visitor from Virginia

Tettah, guarded our apartment and greeting us
every morning.
Komla "Afasi - Director of Engage Now Africa

Sr. Heid,  Accra Mission President's Wife & friend of Rudens

Terry and Heidi Wall - Introduced us to Eugene, fed us and joined us for a night out! Introduced us to Pinocchios

Our Kwabeyna Ward Missionaries - Elder Bryan Henrie, Elder Cody Beckett, Elder Logan Van Wagoner, Elder Peterson

 Doreen is a member of our Kwabeyna Ward, a very bright woman with a good grasp of the gospel.  She often clarifies doctrine in both English and Twi.

Dante, Iris and Rainy Opare

Hans and Judy Akostah with Marx 8, Janie 4 & Wynn 2 - Baby due in September

Shadrach - a rambunctious non-member who
attends regularly
 Julianna & Veronica invited us to dinner
and are now on our instagram.  Sweet, warm and
generous women.
Stephen Abu Sr. Pioneer in Africa

Stephen Abu - Partner in AbuMcConkie - Great business contact and friend

Elder John Koranteng - Area Authority over PEF in West Africa - Great Support

Staff at Engage Now Africa - Paul Smiith, Franciso Wasam, Cecelia Amankwah

Eugene Braum "First Fruits" with wife, Cynthia and children Elvis and Georgette

Rebecca is the receptionist at the Area Offices and is
so cheerful and sweet.

She said, "You Obruni's (white people) are always on time!

This sweet new baby Maggie Abu was born in Montana

Russell and Shelly Cannon "rescued us " repeatedly!
It has been such a blessing to us to be able to live and work in Africa.  We have helped to develop some great relationships for the E-Center as well as for BYU Idaho and met some wonderful people. The blessing of spending an extended amount of time here has taught us a lot about the culture, the people and the challenges of Ghana.  We have made new friends and have identified many  beautiful Ghanaian qualities that we are striving to acquire.  Hope we can!  These people will be forever in our hearts.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014


The Soy Cow is working well and is doing all that we had hoped.  Plans are in place to  use it to teach hands on production and marketing. Most of the milk is used right now to feed the children which is the first goal Then surplus will be marketed.  

The entire farm is planned, planted and cultivated with the goal of supplying all the food needs for the schools.  It's a fascinating thing to see all the crops at different stages, rabbits, chickens, cows, fish, etc. They continue to clear and cultivate the land.

Plans to obtain a tractor to clear land are in place.  It was decided that, rather than raising money to pay the cost of having the land cleared, that money should go toward a needed piece of equipment...a tractor!  It would then be available to clear more available land and help work the farm. Sounds reasonable.  All we need is the tractor!

There has been much

effort in information gathering to determine what will REALLY work in terms of an Agribusiness Certificate program with training, both academic and practical that will lead to actual jobs.  Much discussion is in process to determine just what that will look like.

Steve McGarry is writing the program along with Jeremy Slade, both BYU Idaho professors in Agri Economics. The plan is to have it ready for students by January, starting small and building the program.

The goal is to create a program where entrepreneurial business skills can be learned with practical experience on the school farm land but which could be applied to other businesses as well. Because cost is an issue for students, efforts are being made to qualify this program for PEF loans as well as create opportunities for the students enrolled to earn money while practicing their skills.
Additional land has been offered to be divided into small plots and made available to each student to farm, sell the produce and receive some of the profits.  Plans are also in place to assist each student in either finding employment or secure a microloan upon completion of the program.

Emmanuel gave us a large, beautiful cabbage from the farm. It was the best I've ever seen or eaten...fed four missionaries cole slaw twice,  as well as ourselves plus more Delicious!

 The school is also preparing to offer a nursing program, first a medical aid but eventually a full program. They have set up a medical lab