Our family is about to embark on our biggest journey yet.
In November, we will be relocating to Accra, Ghana. The girls still have very vivid memories of our last trip to Ghana and they’re very excited to call Ghana home. Kingston has never been, and while I am definitely not looking forward to the plane ride over with a 12 month old, it’s a short pain for long-term gain. I can’t wait to watch him chasing chickens, growing up knowing nothing but outdoor play in nature and simple living. This is an amazing gift we can give to our children and I can’t wait to hit re-set on our life and let this new journey begin.
It’s been something Kelvin and I have been pondering about in our minds for the past few years. But the last 12 months have been a real game changer. There has been the highs with the birth of our third child and the fast paced growth of Adinkra Designs and the lows…which have been horrific, with the sudden, unexpected loss of my Dad, who was taken from us due to an infection from what was meant to be a very common and uncomplicated stent procedure. The infection spread fast and shut down Dad’s organs. We barely had time to register what was happening. It feels like Dad was stolen from us, we have a lot of anger, still a lot of unanswered questions and pain that sits with us every day. My Dad was a great man, he raised my brother and I as a single parent, always putting us first, just 60 years of age, taken too early before he got to live life for himself and fulfil his own dreams.
When something like this hits your family, you look at life in a different perspective. What strikes you the hardest, is that life is simply just too friggen short. It’s cliché but we just cant escape the reality that we get one life, one chance at it, so don’t waste time just treading water, if you have a dream, you have to go for it! There was one night when Kelvin and I had this exact conversation, we looked at each other and said “what the hell are we waiting for?!” And so we booked flights to Ghana and let the plans fall into place.
It’s a little bit crazy and a little bit brilliant! Not only will my children have the grounding opportunity to grow up immersed in the rich culture of their heritage, they are going to see first hand, the difference we are trying to make and grow up being a part of it. Being based in Ghana is going to mean we can do so much more and make a much bigger impact. This is the brilliant part.
We have always dreamt about establishing a co-operative to grow our skilled basket weaving team and create an environment where they can flourish.
We can help strengthen traditional practices along with focusing on product innovation so that we can create further opportunities for our basket weaving team.
It will mean an improved supply chain to meet stock demands and extend our wholesale offering worldwide.
So what does this mean for our Australian based business? Well it’s business as usual – our website will remain unchanged. Australian customer orders will continue to be fulfilled from our Sydney based warehouse. We have two new lovely staff members who will be managing the warehouse. International based customer orders will be fulfilled from Ghana. This will simply mean we can now provide more product, greater variety and we can take on more of your custom-made requests – exciting right!
Adinkra Designs is a social business supporting artisan communities through fair trade. Being based in Ghana means we can showcase more of what Ghana has to offer and thereby support more artisan communities. Bolgatanga is famous for it’s incredible basketry but did you know Ghana is a leading exporter of cocoa and shea? Ghana also creates the most amazing hand woven textiles and fabrics, woodcarvings and furniture. So many more great artisan groups we can support!
We created Adinkra Designs because we wanted to give back to Ghana. But not just through supporting artisans but also a big part of our heart is with the children and we want to ensure all children receive the best education so every child has the opportunity to reach their full potential. Being based in Ghana will make it so much easier to create change and oversee the programs being delivered in the youth centres. We will bring you more stories about the lives you are helping us change.
And of course, we will be a skip, hop and a jump away from many many more amazing African countries we plan to explore and share our discoveries with you all. Hello Morocco, Tanzania, Kenya…ok my list grows daily!
It’s going to be an incredible journey and one that we will share with you along the way. So follow along on our social media pages for lots of behind the scenes at Adinkra Designs, the transition, being on the road in Africa with 3 little ones and the people and discoveries we make along the way! And if you are thinking about a trip to Africa, then make Ghana your destination and please, please hit us up, we’d love to meet you, share our recommendations and show you around beautiful Ghana!
Kelly and Kelvin xxx
PS: Please forgive me if I am slow in replying to emails – as you can imagine, we are flat out packing and getting organized but I will get back to you!
Also November is our transition month – orders may take longer to be dispatched as our new staff get a hang of the ropes so please bear with us as we get through any teething issues.
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One of the most common questions we get asked is which is the most versatile bag out of our top selling Market Basket, Tote Bags and Kalahari Carry Bags? Each one is, of course, beautifully constructed, a unique piece of Africa artisan talent! But this makes it awfully hard to choose between them all. All in all, whatever your preference is, you can feel good knowing that your purchase will go towards supporting African artisans in rural communities.
I was so honoured to be asked to speak with Peace from Ausmumpreneur for the TV series: "Women Will Change the World". See our latest blog post to watch the full video.