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Mother and Daughter Take Their Sharing and Love to Ghana from Morris Brown AME to Accra
1/31/2014 10:54:08 AM

Shantell Scott (left) and her mother Shirley Scott (bottom right) with young orphans

By Bob Small

You can say they had a calling and were on a mission when the mini missionary team of Shantell Scott and her mother Shirley Scott recently travelled to Ghana, West Africa with supplies and goodwill to give to a group of orphans of Acura.

Their trip was an exclamation point to when Shantell had spent three months there as a volunteer before accepting the position as director of the God’s Eye Orphanage. She spent over a year there and saw the many needs of the children who were orphaned, many of their parents died of the HIV/AIDS sickness.

The two packed four suitcases and two barrels with clothes, toys, toiletries, canned goods, flour and chocolates. Most of the items they bought themselves from local thrift stores and received help from their church, Morris Brown AME Church.

“I told my mom about the experiences I had over there and we decided we wanted to help those children,” Shantell said. They paid for the trip and supplies by, “saving their pennies.” “I felt we had to step out on faith,” Shirley said.

She said the trip was one of the most rewarding things she has ever been involved with. The people were so thankful for what we could give them. I felt like I was the one receiving the blessings,” she said.

The elder Scott said she was amazed at how much the people there looked so much like people she grew up with and knew in Charleston. “It was like seeing relatives of mine and my friends,” she said.

While there they stayed in containment, like a hostel. They purchased food for a party they threw for the community. Over 300 people attended. “We bought chicken, honey and other goods from a store affiliated with the US embassy. For them it was like a feast,” she said.

The main meat in Ghana is pork. Goat is considered a delicacy. Shirley said the people also eat something they call bush meat. She said bush meat was anything caught out in the bush.

While there the two had a chance to visit some of the tourist sites. She said the site that had the most effect on her was the fort at Cape Coast where many of the enslaved Africans were held before being shipped to the United States and Caribbean. “To see the conditions in which they were subjected to and see the “Door of No Return” brought me to tears, she recounted.

Shirley said she was surprised to know that the people there were aware of Charleston, SC. “They knew about Charleston and that was a main port in the slave trade. When they learned that we were from Charleston they were surprised and referred to us as survivors,” She said.

Shirley said crime in the area is very low and that there is a strong Christian influence there. “We attended church service there and heard some of the same type of music that we sing in our churches, ” she said.

They visited the Volta Region where Shirley said there are places where whites are not allowed to go to unless accompanied by an African. “No white person can go into the Hangman Village unless accompanied by an African,” she said.

She said most of the roads are dirt so getting around can be quite an adventure. “People hang on cars like minivans. She said it is not uncommon to see women balance baskets and goods on their heads as they go through town.

You won’t find many windows and just about all of the cooking is done outside. Shirley said. The mini missionaries are already planning their next trip for 2015. She said they hope to bring even more supplies on the next trip.

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