For the past five years, our work has been focused on the prevention of HIV/AIDS, Malaria, Cholera, TB, and most important Sanitation and Hygiene. Through our unique mobile messaging systems and our educational programs, we are doing our part to educate Africa against some of the ravages that are affecting it.
Our systems are the perfect medium to reach previously unreachable viewers. Our mobile messaging systems have screens that are [24-feet] wide and more than [21-feet] high. In Ghana, Access African People Foundation has been broadcasting in several languages. The broadcast languages are based upon their locations. Each screen broadcast in the most popular language of the neighborhood where it is currently located. Viewers come out and sit with their families for FREE. All viewings are in public areas, and are free to the populous. We broadcast Wholesome Family Oriented and Educational Programming. We also broadcast popular soccer games, and international soccer tournaments.
We started operating in Ghana in 2007. During that time we sponsored a numerous community cleanups in a number of small towns and villages throughout the Eastern Region. We sponsored a number of interscholastic track and field events and also interscholastic soccer games in the Eastern Region and the Volta Region. Our organization actually started broadcasting in June of 2009.
This is how the organization’s broadcasting program works: A village or town is selected. An initial assessment of the village is performed. The staff goes to the village, meets with the Chief, the Queen Mother, the Elders, and the Assembly Person. Based upon these meetings, the needs of that particular village are identified. [ie.. AIDS, Malaria prevention, TB, Cholera, Sanitation ect..]
ACCESS then meets with the governmental agency in charge of that particular need, [ie.. Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Information] If the Ministry has information in a Video format, that addresses the particular need, then ACCESS is given the information. If there is no information available then ACCESS generates the information, by creating a video, in the local language that addresses the issues.
ACCESS then goes to the Village or town, and sets up one of its Giant Projection systems and shows a movie in the local language or an international soccer match or tournament. The messaging addressing that village’s particular issue would then be inserted into the programming every ten to fifteen minutes during each nights programming. The presentations are usually for two evenings, or for as long as the tournament plays.
Thousands of people come out to each event. Many people walk for miles to witness the presentations. ACCESS has been able to reach tens of thousands of Villagers with our systems over the past five years.
Every village or town has a soccer field. ACCESS is able to erect our screens on these fields. Where necessary we provide our own power source to ensure that services can be made available in even the most rural areas. We have been able to address a broad spectrum of issues. We are able to target the issues that are endemic to specific areas of the country.
ACCESS has established contact with more than  villages around the Eastern and Volta Regions. The Chiefs, Queen Mothers and or the Assemblymen of these areas are all enthusiastic about the possibilities that this medium has brought to their communities, and to their youth in particular.
ACCESShas recently shifted focus. We have found that a major issue in Africa is the concept of cleanliness. Many people in Africa have no concept of germs, and other pathogens that that lead to their illnesses and death. We are now focusing on Cleanliness on both an external level and an internal level. We have found that their greatest need is to understand the concept of how being clean can impact their very existence. Having seen this, we realize that even if we show the ravages of diseases, and do not clearly delineate to them that their cause is based on invisible pathogens, then our work has been in vain.
Despite our years of activities, many Africans still believe that they can be protected by going to the village fetish, or voodoo priest. Superstition is entrenched in the psyche of the average African. It has been a part of their lives for thousands of years. It has taken centuries to inculcate these beliefs, and they cannot be eradicated overnight.
ACCESS has recently relocated to an area of Ghana where the incidents of AIDS is the highest in the entire country as a result of cultural promiscuity and rampant prostitution.
Villagers in some areas told ACCESS that they appreciated the information about AIDS prevention, but they then Asked, “How would the knowledge that we provide help them to feed their families?” They Asked, “How would the information that we bring prevent them from prostituting themselves?”
In an effort to curb these practices, ACCESS asked the villagers what handicrafts they produced? What type of artwork did they make? The villagers showed us a wonderful assortment of things that they made.
ACCESSthen contacted African Expressions who agreed to fund the acquisition of handicrafts from the local villagers for resale in the USA. The sales of these handicrafts would be used to create a sustainable business for the villagers. Income from the sales of these items will also be used to continue to fund operation of Access African People Foundation’s educational work in Ghana, and to repurchase additional handicraft for subsequent shipments.
As demand for these handicraft increases, training of tribal girls and women in the making of these handicrafts will be carried out by ACCESS, allowing these women to have an alternate source of income.