A long and winding road

Posted September 19, 2011 from Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha

It has been a long journey with many twists and turns but then how many of us find life to be a straight road? From my childhood dreams of living on a farm to where I am now has taken in so many experiences and the joys and sorrows of a life that has taken chances I could never have planned or dreamt of in my early years.

The adventure really began when I met my husband and we travelled to Ghana back in the 70’s. Not a great time to be there! We lived on the ‘wrong’ side of the tracks where taxis didn’t venture after dark and at the end of the line for electricity and water. We could see the lights dimming as they got nearer to us and usually finally run out a house or two before ours and the same with water as only a trickle made it all the way to the tap. A visit to the shops meant walking to the city and joining any queue I could find, if I was lucky returning with a few ‘treasures’, usually not what we needed but who cared, we were in love! Eventually we ran back to England. The house fell down and our health was suffering so we joined the exodus of economic migrants and fell into a life in Britain, raising a family and all the usual things. But we couldn’t let go of Ghana and it seems it wasn’t going to let go of us either. The calling to traditional Chieftaincy took us back again and again, became so much part of our life. The changes led me to return to learning and I studied Social Anthropology and Rural Development becoming knowledgeable on the role of the Queenmother in Akan society. Through this and the work I took to pay the bills I sought ways for the voices of the unheard to be raised. The stories of people in isolated communities who don’t have the connections to make their voices heard. Those people who suffer injustice, prejudice and mistreatment with no-one to see they are not waving but drowning. 11 years ago I found community radio! It changed not only my life but the lives of so many others. Through broadcasting the stories and concerns of the unheard they found strength, became a community of shared experience and changed the world. I continue to work in community radio but it isn’t enough. The stories need a bigger audience. Then I found Pulse and found that audience. My life has changed too, I am now a widow. Working in a new place, St Helena, looking beyond the comfort of what had been my life for so long. The world is a lonely place for me now but finding Pulse has helped me find somewhere I can belong wherever life takes me and knowing so many people are there has made me feel part of a community and find a place for me again.

Voices of Our Future Application: Your Journey and Vision

Comments 4

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Stella Paul
Sep 19, 2011
Sep 19, 2011

The good thing about a long and winding road is that after every turn, the journey begins anew. Its a new beginning for you too and in this journey we are all together. If you were talking from England, I can't say if I would have been this attentive. But to hear a voice from St Helena - that's something special. I hope to hear many stories from you. And wish you the very best!

Natasha Leite
Sep 24, 2011
Sep 24, 2011

Thanks so much for sharing!

Sep 25, 2011
Sep 25, 2011

Thank you for sharing your story! It is true, life is a winding road and your essay on your journey drew me in. I love that you are drawn to the "stories of people in isolated communities who don’t have the connections to make their voices heard" and that you yourself now live in an isolated community (I had to look up where St Helena is).

I am glad you found PulseWire and are participating in Voices of Our Future!

Keep sharing stories, Sally

Iffat Gill
Oct 01, 2011
Oct 01, 2011

Dear Sister,

Nice to read about your life and the work you have been involved with. It is truly wonderful to have a sister from St.Helena. I am not sure I understood it correctly but I was wondering where you started your community radio and what has become of it now? Are you still involved with the similar work right now as well?

Hope to read more of your work. Keep writing! Best wishes.