At the end of the first week on their projects, our volunteers were excited for their chosen adventure weekend in the Volta region.
On Saturday morning we all assembled with our overnight bags and boarded the bus to head towards the regional capital Ho. Some made the most of the opportunity for a nap while others listened to music or took in the views as we drove along. We got to see a different side to Ghana as we moved away from the coast with green vegetation and a few hills as well. we stopped to take pictures of Mt Adaklu which stands 600m above sea level and is one of the highest points in Ghana. While we stretched our legs we also noted a group making cement blocks although our volunteers politely declined our offer to go and help them with their work! After a quick stop in Ho for some volunteers to change money, we headed to the African Hill Resort for lunch.
Unfortunately despite their best efforts, our volunteers found that you had to pay for the wifi in the hotel so before the food was ready, we took in some of the views from the roof terrace instead.
After lunch we were on the coach for another hour and excitement was building as we moved towards Tafi Atome Monkey Sanctuary. After a quick stop to buy some bananas we arrived at the sanctuary in the early afternoon. As we walked through the jungle park looking for a family of monkeys, Mrs Mackew kept the group up to date with the score from the quarter-final match between England and Sweden.
As we found our first family of monkeys, the fun began. Our volunteers held their bananas firmly and while shy at first, the monkeys were soon jumping onto their arms, shoulders and heads in some cases to try and reach the food. The monkeys would only eat whole bananas however – and our guide told us that this is because the monkeys are really clever and won’t eat an open one in case it has been poisoned! The fun continued until the monkeys returned to the trees, apparently full and we walked further through the jungle to see if we could find another family to feed.
As we walked through the jungle we saw lots of ants and millipede but no more monkeys so we started to make our way back to the bus. As we did so the news came through that England had won their match against Sweden and were into the semi-finals of the World Cup for the first time in 28 years. There was a definite air of excitement amongst the volunteers as we walked back through a village outside the Monkey Sanctuary. Here we saw a group of children playing and collecting water, some begging for our volunteers empty water bottles to take home with them. We were again reminded of the lifestyles and responsibilities children have from a very young age here.
After thanking our tour guide and a quick toilet break, we started the final part of our journey towards Hohoe, the location for our second day of adventures – Wli falls.
After checking into our hotel and ordering our evening meal, we spent some time reflecting on our best bits of the trip so far. Afterwards, all had another relatively early night and looked forward to seeing even more of the region the next day.