Do whatever you’ve been assigned/called to do on this earth regardless of the challenges and pain you might encounter along the way. Your purpose on Earth can be fulfilled through Christ who strengthens you. Your dreams are achievable. Keep pushing. Today on Exclusives With SammytheAuthor, I get to interview one beautiful soulful Gospel Artist with an Exceptional and Angelic Voice by the name, Ama Berries. Enjoy Reading!
1: For the benefits of the people who might not know You, tell us a bit about Yourself. (Background, Education, Career etc).
Thank you, I’m Bannor Fremah Mavis ,my dad is a pastor in the Apostles Continuation Church Int. I’m currently in Ashanti Bekwai but stays in Accra, La. Am a student of Saint Johns; in my third (3) year.
2: What’s the story behind your Voice/Personality?
Okay. I discovered my talent in class 2. So I began singing in church. And also coming from a Christian home, it wasn’t anything difficult.😊
3: What Inspires You?
Thank you. My dad inspires me. Choosing the work of God isn’t an easy task. Problems, hard times and so on but he forces to get there one day. So I look up to my hero (Daddy).
4: When did you join Tiktok? And also how is it pushing your awesome Talent?
Okay, I joined TikTok early April, and God being so good it’s going on well. I’ve been in contact with some celebrities in the Gospel industry and that’s awesome.👏
5: How did one of the Popular Tiktoker/Actress Asantewaa, discover your page, liked and even followed you? And how was the feeling?
Okay. When I started this journey it wasn’t easy. And one thing I’ve realized is that every one needs that one person to get there. I posted a video and went to bed, woke up the next morning to see my likes and as I scrolled down and behold I noticed a verified account has liked my video. That feeling I can’t explain. I was so excited. I couldn’t believe my eyes. I went to her page and she has followed me for a follow back and even did a duet to some of my videos..she is the best. ❤️🙌
6: Have you had other gospel Artists or Media platforms reaching out to you lately?
Okay so I’ve been to Wontumi Fm 📻 and also met with the gospel artist too, but wouldn’t like to mention names. And my school is now an obstacle for everything, hoping I complete soon.
7: Do you already have written songs of your own waiting on the pipeline to be released after School?
Actually no. I don’t have any but on it.
8: Any Challenges faced so far in your quest to Graduate High School?
9: What has been your Greatest Fear as a Human being? Anything Shareable?
Friends are my greatest 😨 dear.
10: If you had the chance to turn back the hands of time, what would you have changed in your life?
Some friends I took that almost led me to problems.🙌🙌
11: Lastly, How can an interested person contact you for collaboration/business?
Each day is a new day to showcase what you have. Don’t sit idle and expect your needs to be satisfied. Wake up, work hard, get the money and pick someone else up. As humans, we exist to help eachother, regardless. Today on Exclusives with SammytheAuthor, an Inspiring Ghanaian Entrepreneur and founder of Spreadaid International shares with us, his upcoming projects. Check the Interview below.
1: Hello, Mr. Adabah, kindly take us through your journey as an Entrepreneur.
Thank you Brother Samuel for the opportunity and I am grateful to all and sundry especially to all members of SpreadAid International out there who have been supportive throughout these years.
I will describe my activities as a social entrepreneur and a self-employed person. Social entrepreneur in the sense that I am committed to finding approaches that seek to develop, fund, and implement solutions to social, cultural and environmental issues especially in the area of education and youth development.
As you are already aware through our previous interviews, this drive of providing solutions led to the establishment of SpreadAid International.
As a self-employed person, I create avenues of business opportunities that could translate monetarily to take care of what I do on daily basis and also to help achieve set short, medium and long term goals.
The journey as a social entrepreneur and a self-employed person was all motivated by the strong desire to help people and to be part of solution providers.
Circumstances of life have presented a situation that each day, every individual is forced to think or focus on him/herself without extending help to others. These same situations have also made it possible for people to move from just thinking about themselves to start thinking about what they could do to help others, build them up and also send them out to be helpers of others. In that case, gradually creating helpers all over the world. With time, this whole unwritten agendum has found its way grounded and documented in SpreadAid International’s Eagle’s Eye ( a document which continues the vision, mission statements, achievements and future outlined plans of the organization). The categorization has been specified as
• Systems and Administration
These are the pillars we have build so far to grow and bring into fruition our passion of building helpers all over the world.
2: What is Spreadaid International all about?
SpreadAid International (SAI) is a registered service-oriented Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) dedicated to supporting and improving the plight of the less privileged in the society and helping the youth to hone their talents and skills for their own and national development. SAI primarily focuses on and embarks on projects aimed at promoting education and youth development with the goal of “Putting Back Smiles on Faces”. The idea behind the inception of the organization was birthed back in March 2011 when a group of high school students from different schools under unexpected circumstances came together to share past examination questions among themselves to facilitate transfer of knowledge. SpreadAid International as it is known today metamorphosed from the original name, GreenAid (Fresh Help) and from simply being a study group to a registered NGO today committed to advocating for and supporting the cause of the less privileged in society.
3: What was the mission from the onset?
Since the inception of this organization, the mission of SAI has been about championing the cause of deprived persons, unearthing the talents of the youth and helping groom them for better life prospects and basically, helping others grow. All in all, SAI seeks to:
•Advocate for and support the less privileged in society.
•Unearth and build talents in the youth.
•Promote excellence in education.
•Undertake volunteer programs.
4: Kindly throw more light on the Adopt-a-School project.
The second phase of SAI in her mandate to help alleviate the suffering of the less privileged in society and build up the youth for self and national development materializes from February 1, 2020 to November 30, 2025. During this five-year period which marks a renewed beginning and similarly, continuation of the phase one of the organizations, key and impactful projects would come to fruition. This is in line with the core vision and mission of all Spreaders to contribute to human and community development and to impact as many lives as possible.
FOCUS OF PHASE TWO
The focus of this second chapter of the organization will be directed towards the promotion and support of education particularly, at the basic level (lower and upper primary) and Junior High School. There are many a school especially in rural communities all the country over who are deprived supportive mechanisms ranging from utilities, teaching and learning materials, and uniforms among others needed to ameliorate educational challenges and make the school an attractive place to be. SAI is committed to alleviating such constraints.
The provisions in this second phase like previous projects are further aimed at helping achieve the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4 which is about quality education. The goal is to ensure all-encompassing and equitable quality education as well as advance lasting learning prospects or opportunities for all. SAI, since its inception has touched several lives and contributed to this goal and its phase two would continue to do same and more.
The Nyitawuta D/A Primary School situated in the Akatsi North District in the Volta region will be the center of SpreadAid’s intervention within the five-year span. This school, located in a typically rural area, to an unsurprisingly great magnitude is constrained financially, geographically and socially. This is problematic as their persisting conditions become disincentives for the students to cultivate the passion for school and education.
Children run the risk of being truant or at worst, dropping out of school to for instance, help their parents on the farm all in the absence of needed support, facilities and effective learning environments.
The plan here is to mitigate the challenges that impede the education of the students and help them imbibe the reading culture, that is, encourage them and ensure that they adopt self-reading and self-learning for their development.
The foundation of children is a determining factor in how and what they grow up to be. Promoting the reading culture especially at the primary level through the provision of the needed resources, facilities and conducive atmosphere would accordingly create well rounded students who read not just because they have to but because they want to. SpreadAid International will be focused on making reading, learning, the school and education in general attractive to the students in order to ensure this.
PROJECT TO EMBARK ON – “ADOPT-A-SCHOOL” PROJECT
The project to be executed dubbed, “Adopt-a-School” project, as the name implies would involve SpreadAid International taking on or adopting a community school, herein, Nyitawuta D/A Primary School and bettering their conditions to a considerable degree.
This project is an upgrade of the flagship outreach scheme of SpreadAid International’s first phase, “Project 5000” where the lives of thousands of students from some schools in rural communities across the country were impacted through the organization’s provision of stationery, educational materials and basic aid to support teaching, learning and the general wellbeing of the students.
The “Adopt-a-School” project branching out, further houses two major projects, one to be realized in a space of one year and the other in the subsequent years. These two projects are:
1. “CLOTHE-ME-FOR-SCHOOL” PROJECT
Students in less privileged schools are disadvantaged in several ways including the lack of uniforms to attend school with. Most often the best they possess are old, worn-out or tattered clothes with little hope of acquiring new ones owning to the abysmally low incomes and high poverty rates bedeviling parents or guardians in such communities. This is a great disincentive for children and goes a long way to demotivate them from going to school or learning, hence threatening their bright future and impeding an expedited achievement of SDG 4.
AIM OF PROJECT
The aim of the “Clothe-Me- for-School” projectis to encourage and incentivize the young ones to be in the classroom and this will be achieved through the provision of tailored uniforms, school bags and stationery to meet that peculiar need.
It is common place for children in deprived communities to be relegated to farming activities at the expense of securing an education and the lack of uniforms is one such contributory factor to this phenomenon as aforementioned. Under the “Clothe- Me-for-School” project, great efforts will be channeled into bringing as many children as there are from the farm and into the classroom through this provision of appropriate or right uniforms to attend school with.
TIMELINE OF PROJECT
The project will be executed within the second year of the second phase of SAI, specifically, from February 2021 to November 2021.
Also, the project, within this period will serve as a preparatory ground to usher all and sundry into the next undertaking of SAI under the “Adopt-a-School” project.
The projected budget of the “Clothe-Me-for-School” project is pegged at fourteen thousand, four hundred Ghana cedis (GH¢ 14,400.00).
2. THE LIBRARY PROJECT – “READ-TO-LEAD” PROJECT
This is the other major project under the “Adopt-a-School” projectwhich as underscored is aimed at helping the school children inculcate the reading culture and nurture the desire to be in school.
Functional and properly furnished libraries in basic schools especially in rural areas are very rare if not completely nonexistent. SAI intends to change that narrative one school at a time, starting with the Nyitawuta D/A Primary School in order to afford the students similar opportunities enjoyed by their peers in other urbanized communities.
AIM OF PROJECT
The aim, as captured in the name of the project is to put up a functional and well-resourced library, stocked with essential books and library services to accommodate the reading needs of students. The whole idea is to make the students want to read by and for themselves and to do this, the best has to be provided to motivate them. Through this, there will be renewed hope for a future generation of well-read and educated leaders who as children had the appropriate foundation regardless of their geographical location or circumstances.
TIMELINE OF PROJECT
The “Read-to-Lead” projectwill be rolled out from February 2022 to November 2025, marking the pinnacle of the SAI’s second phase.
The estimated budget of the project sits at one hundred and ten thousand Ghana cedis (GH¢ 110, 000).
FUNDING OF BOTH PROJECTS
Both “Clothe-Me-for-School” project and “Read-to-Lead” project will be funded by sponsorships solicited from different sources including from members of SpreadAid International, individuals in the society, families and friends, companies, some government bodies and potential external sources. SAI will also be open to collaborations with other NGOs for the realization of this goal.
5: Has it been difficult getting sponsors on board for these great projects so far?
Actually, we are still in the preparatory stage of embarking on the first project- “Clothe-me-for-school”.
We have received some funds from individuals who would want to see to it that by their contribution, these young ones are able to smile in their new uniforms to boost them up psychologically for studies. We are grateful to each and everyone of them. We have however not yet hit even half of the projected amount of Gh 14,400 for this project. We would like to use this platform to reach out to our brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers and all well wishers out there to help us bring this project to its fruition. Each uniform costs Gh 50.00 and we have targeted 200 uniforms.
You can send your contributions through our bank account or conveniently through mtn mobile money. Details are on the flier. A single uniform can go a long way to encourage a child who hasn’t been in any until now, to get motivated to go after his/her dreams.
6: Do you have plans on partnering with other NGOs locally and internationally?
For this particular project, we have so far had feedback from abams_foundation. They would like to support with footwear for these children. We would definitely want to have more of such kind-hearted NGOs on board for us to do this together. This is going to be a major victory to all of us who would join hands to make it happen. Both locally and internationally, our arms are opened to embrace individuals and set-ups who would want to clothe a child for school and also get on board out next major project of putting up a Library facility for Nyitawuta D/A School.
Failure doesn’t automatically predict the outcome of our future. Just because you failed doesn’t necessarily mean you shouldn’t try again. Rise up after every fall. Your dreams are achievable. Don’t stop now, keep pushing. Today on Exclusives with SammytheAuthor, an Inspiring Ghanaian – Netherland based Serial Entrepreneur, shares with us, her life story and career as an Entrepreneur and Philanthropist . Checkout the Interview Below.
1: For the benefits of the people who might not know you, tell us a bit about yourself. (Background, Education, Career, etc.).
I was born and raised in the Netherlands by my Suriname mother and Ghanaian father. I have always been an advocate for self-education and lifelong learning. So after studying marketing and communications, I set out to educate myself on other topics that interest me such as, digital transformation, Design Thinking, Business strategy, and finance through programs from Boston University, Harvard Business School, and Oxford University.
I spent a few years in the banking and insurance industry until I moved to Dubai, where I started my consulting career. A few years after that, I traveled a bit in Europe before moving back to the Netherlands as an Entrepreneur. Aside from my businesses, I now work together with an amazing team at ScaleupNation on a mission to increase the odds for startups to scale successfully through research and innovative tools.
2: What’s the story behind your personality?
I think a lot of different life events and environmental factors play a role in one’s personality. At the core, I believe I am as much a dreamer as I am a realist, allowing me to approach life, relationships and decisions more holistically. It’s probably the reason why I connect well with different people and on all levels.
3: What has been your go-to-source when all hell is breaking loose in your life?
Reflection. I try to take time to reflect daily but, sometimes life gets tough. I usually decide to retreat, spend some time alone to clear my mind, write things down and re-energize. It’s such a powerful thing to meet your obstacles head-on with a clear mind, knowing exactly; what you’re going to do about it.
4: What triggered the idea to commence Growth Lab? Give us an overview of what you do.
Growth lab was born out of the idea to help more growth-stage startups to scale by focusing on specific elements of the scaling journey. Unlike an accelerator that tries to get everything patched up a bit and all at the same time we focus more on the successful execution of sprints on strategy or leadership; for instance, through growth programs. We are currently pivoting, however, and I’ll be able to share more about that soon.
5: Being a Woman Empowerment Enthusiast and Growth Strategist, what are some of the necessary steps to take as a young lady looking to build her brand? Anything shareable?
It’s funny, I never saw my personal brand as a thing to work on; Up until 2020, and I was happily doing the work on the background. It wasn’t until I had to face the fact that in the world of business, the same rules do not apply for (black) women as they do for men, I decided something had to change. I think the biggest insight for me was how powerful sharing your unique story is. It’s something so uniquely yours, that it will attract the right audiences in due time if you just keep showing up authentically.
6: What is your take on Social Entrepreneurship?
I am a strong supporter of social entrepreneurship initiatives. It will be great if we start to hype and support these initiatives as much as we do with new tech solutions that don’t necessarily solve any real-world problems. There is a shift happening, however, and I believe we will see more startups with a social impact focus in the next decade or so.
7: If you had the chance to turn back the hands of time, what would you have rectified in your business life?
I would have allowed myself to fail more. Try more things, involve more people earlier, and ask for help. However, it’s those elements of the entrepreneurial journey that you can only find out by learning. So in as much as; it would be nice to see where that would have taken me, I know for sure I wouldn’t be who I am today had I not done things exactly the way I did. So this is definitely not a summary of regrets, just lessons learned.
8: What has been your greatest fear ever since you started this walk?
The fear of failure. Funnily enough, not towards others by failure to meet my own expectations. I tend to set the bar for myself very high, and I think that’s good. I also know that not being able to meet my own expectations is something that I still find hard to deal with. The lesson for me in this is; about finding the balance between aiming for the moon and giving myself grace sometimes.
9: How can one transition his/her team to remote-working times of crisis.
Although it is always preferable to establish clear remote-work policies and training in advance, in times of crisis or other rapidly changing circumstances, this level of preparation may not be feasible. Recent developments have left many employees and their managers working out of the office and separated from each other for the very first time.
4 steps to remote work
The first thing that I recommend managers do is to establish daily check-ins or daily huddles. The morning huddle is a great way to get the team aligned on individual and company priorities for that day. The huddle is a really short meeting to share your number one or two priorities for that day, it is not a place to go over your to-do list. You will share your definition of done on those set priorities so that everyone understands exactly what you will be working on today and when this is considered to be done.
The huddle also functions as a way to recognise hurdles or bottlenecks that may get in the way of progress for that day – which then can easily be resolved on the spot by making use of the collective intelligence present – avoiding people getting stuck for hours trying to fix something all by themselves (which is killing for productivity). And I recommend doing this via a video conferencing tool always to keep that sense of human connection within the team.
Secondly, provide several different communication options – because you will find that email alone is insufficient. When it’s time for deliberation, strategy sessions, team collaboration sessions or any type of meeting that will take on more than 10 minutes by the rule of thumb – use a video conferencing tool. Being able to see the visual cues of meeting participants allows for increased mutual knowledge that can be tapped into, and will help make meetings more effective.
Of course, there are other circumstances when quick collaboration is more important than visual detail. And for these situations, provide mobile-enabled individual messaging tools like Slack, which can be used for simpler conversations as well as time-sensitive communication. And then you can make use of project management and tracking tools such as Monday, Trello, or Asana.
10: Any challenges faced coming up as an Entrepreneur?
Entrepreneurship is not for the faint of heart. It is a long and hard journey that will stretch you on all levels. I personally found being patient and trusting the process when you are building your business the hardest, part, especially when you are the only person who believes this is going to work. They say it’s lonely at the top, and at some points, it truly is. That’s why it’s important to be careful who you surround yourself with; your circle plays a big part in how far you will go.
As Believers and in our walk with Christ, we tend to come across a whole lot of Challenges/Difficulties in our devoted quest to please Our Maker, God; but as we keep on pursuing Him, we stand the chance of Victory in all Our Endeavors. All Perfect Gifts/Talents and Blessings comes from Him. He makes all things Beautiful when the time is due and in His own time. Today on Exclusives With SammytheAuthor, I present to You, a Great Vibrant Vocalist and a Music Producer, Ms. Sarah Nathalie as she shares with us, her story. Enjoy Reading!
1: Tell Us A Bit About Yourself. Who Is Ms. Sarah Nathalie?
Hello! My name is Sarah! My ethnicity is Dominican but I reside and was born in the United States of America. I am only 20 years old, so the furthest I’ve gotten in education is an AA degree. And as for career, I am just following in whatever direction the Lord leads me. For now, I have been focusing full time on creating music for the Kingdom!
2: What Is The Story Behind Your Personality?
I grew up with two wonderful, Jesus-loving parents and a beautiful sister. Like many other families, we passed through many trials that shaped us into the strong, God-fearing family we are today. Personally, my fight has been more internal with my emotions, as well as battling the flesh. I never really had a history with clubs or drinking or drugs. Glory be to God that he has kept me. But hardships are unavoidable- you don’t have to go out of your way to encounter them. One thing I was able to learn and see for myself throughout the years though, was that without process there is no growth. You are not able to see your test grades, till you take the test! So I am thankful to God for always being by my side through it all and continuing to be faithful to both me and my family.
3: At What Age Did You Notice that You Could Sing?
I noticed I LOVED to sing ever since I could talk and hold decent conversations. I’d say perhaps around the age of 5 is when I first remember singing non-stop at home.
4: As A Music Producer, What Are Some of The Necessary Things To Know Before Starting Out?
Not just as a music producer, but in anything you feel led to do by the Spirit, I think it’s important to just do it. Start. It doesn’t matter if you’re good, if you have the necessary and expensive equipment. God sees the quality of your heart, not the quality of your beats. Of course, you will learn with time and it’s important to do things with excellence for the Lord. However, that takes time and practice. I am still learning so much.
5: How Many Albums/Eps Do You Have So far?
Currently, I have 1 Album, 3 EPs, 6 singles and a few collabs you can find under the “Appears On” section on Spotify and Apple Music! You can also find many low-key tracks on Soundcloud- which is where I began this journey!
6: In Your Own Words, How Would You define Failure?
Failure to me, is failing the Lord. Failing to love and serve Jesus the way he deserves to be loved and served is ultimate failure to me. Not accomplishing or taking care of the things he has entrusted to me as well.
Today on Exclusives With SammytheAuthor, I get to interview a Young Vibrant Guy who is very passionate about books. He is a Systems Engineer and a Teacher. Here, he is shares with me some insights on a great book he read titled “Strength From Within; The Power To Unearth Your Potentials” written by Dzagbletey Faith Adabah Julius. Checkout the Interview Below:
1: Who Is Mr. Paul Mawutor Kwahi.
I’m a Systems Engineer and a Teacher. Am a tech enthusiast and I love reading. Am a football fanatic and I love making new friends and networking.
2: What Are Some Of the Insights You Gained After Reading This Great Book?
I actually purchased copies of ‘Strength From Within;The Power To Unearth Your Potentials’ after a friend of mine uploaded it on his status.
I picked a lot of nuggets from reading the book but would like to share a few of them:
i. Each and every one of us is made in a unique way and it’s up to each individual to discover and unearth that special ‘self’.
ii. Discovering my purpose and getting started is key in becoming my best self and also not to allow my mistakes and past get the better of me but rather rise and start again.
iii. Always be mindful of the yardstick I use in measuring my success or progress.
iv. Never to take out the God Factor as I identify my strength from within and also to be always expectant. These are some of the nuggets I picked.
3: So What do you think would be the essence of this message to the youth out there and to people in general?
The message to the youth and people out there is very simple; ‘Take up the responsibility to become who you have to be and don’t leave it to anyone or chance, start from where you are and never up’!
4: Awesome…Would you recommend this book? To whom? And why?
Yes! To everyone out there especially the youth because discovering your purpose and unearthing your potentials you need to have access to the right information and also taking action. And this book seeks to enlighten it’s reader.
5: Which chapter of the book got you glued to it?
Wow! Almost all the chapters, but 3rd chapter got me glued.
6: Great. Can You Share What Got You Glued to the 3rd Chapter?
The 3rd chapter enlightened me more about doing something about myself by keeping watch and taking responsibility over three important things in my life if I really want to unearth my potential: i. My Thoughts. ii. My Words. iii. My Actions. He explained vividly that these three things are interconnected and can’t be separated. And also I have to put in the work in order to get the results,i.e paying the price in order to get the prize and to project the myself rather than living in the shadows of others.
So there you have it. What are you waiting for? Don’t Hesitate; Go get Yours NOW!!
On our journey through life, we encounter lots of challenges but in the midst of it all, Hardwork pays with God at the Centre of it all; every step of the way. You will fail at a point but don’t let it discourage You. You will fall but get up and keep moving. Today on Exclusives with SammytheAuthor, an Inspiring Ghanaian – American Serial Entrepreneur, shares with us, her life story and career as an Entrepreneur and Founder and CEO of WESHEA. Checkout the Interview Below.
1: Tell us a bit about yourself. Who is Miss Akua Afriyie? (Background, Education and Career). Born and raised in Ghana to an American mother and Ghanaian father. My family were missionaries in Ghana and I enjoyed my experience. Moved to US after high school for college where I held several leadership roles. Founder and CEO of WESHEA, a global skincare company with its headquarters and production house in Ghana. WESHEA has won several business competitions including Total Ghana’s “Startupper of the Year 2019” and “Pontiac Big Idea Grant Program 2020” I am also the Founder and CEO of NBY Foundation (formerly known as Afriyie Foundation) The nonprofit organization is in honor of my late father who passed in October 2019. Our mission it to provide educational materials and basic needs to disadvantaged children in Ghana.
2: Great.😊 What’s the story (inspiration) behind Your Personality? My parents, especially my father. My parents were very passionate in everything they do. My father’s life was very inspirational to me. He raised me in Ghana, while my mom and other siblings were in the USA so we spent a lot of time together. He always planted in my head the believe that I can achieve anything I put my mind to. His life was certainly a testimony to that. My father who’s highest form of education was high school, one day became a lecturer at a university in the USA. That story alone gave me wings to fly. Because of that, I am fearless, passionate and determined.
3: Woow..That’s Awesome. Tell us more about your Company/Initiative, WeShea? WESHEA is a global skincare business. We manufacture Shea butter for corporations that use Shea butter for cosmetics, food processing and pharmaceuticals needs. We also make beauty products such as creams, body butters, oils, scrubs, mask and more. All our products are 100% Natural, vegan, cruelty free, chemical free etc.
4: Beautiful. So what triggered the idea to commence WeShea? Anything Shareable? I’ve always had a desire for business. WESHEA came about because I always get compliments on my skin and hair. People would ask me what I use and I would tell them it was simply Shea butter.
5: Great. How can one get to enjoy (Purchase) your Products? In Ghana, you can call +233 50 733 1002 or +233 24 999 9338. All other sales are made on http://www.weshea.com
6: Great. Being one of the 10 finalist in your Entrepreneurship Program, shaped me into what I am today, What inspired you to build such a great Initiative? When I first came to the US, I knew I wanted to find a way to help people back home. I had access to resources and opportunities here in the US, so I wanted to make resources accessible to people back home as well. While brainstorming, I realized that one of the biggest challenges in Ghana was unemployment. I knew that as young people of this generation, we could no longer wait on the government to make things happen.
I figured one of the best ways to provide job opportunities is to support entrepreneurs and small businesses so that in the next 5 years, they would have hopefully expanded and provide work. So, whenever I got paid for work, I would put some money aside and by the time I came to Ghana for holidays, I had enough to do the entrepreneurship program. We ended up giving 2 people a total of GHc 4,000. Back then it was $1,000. It may not be much, but I am grateful that I was able to help. 7: That’s Awesome. What are some of the challenges you faced or still facing in your quest to achieve your Dreams/Goals? Well Covid-19 for sure has been a challenge for most businesses including mine. Other than that, I can’t complain. My businesses do go through challenges. But I see them as lessons and necessary for my journey. Entrepreneurship is not all glamorous, although it may seem that way.
8: How was the feeling when WESHEA Growth Project won last year’s Startupper of the Year by total Challenge, organized by Total Petroleum Ghana Limited? It was amazing. I will forever be grateful for that opportunity because it gave us the capital to invest in our production facility in Upper East, Ghana. As an entrepreneur, getting recognized for my business idea gave me the confidence that I’m doing something right so I need to keep going. There’s no time to stop.
9: If you had the opportunity to turn back the hands of time, what would you have changed in your business life? I wouldn’t change anything. I love the journey, the ups and downs, lows and highs. Every part of the journey has been necessary for my growth.
10: Any piece of advice for the young ones aspiring to be like you or pursue your kind of work? Entrepreneurship is freedom. Freedom to be you, to be creative, to answer to yourself, to not take orders from anyone, to enjoy life etc. However, in order to succeed on this path, you need discipline, resilience and patience. If you are looking for quick money, this is not the field for you. It takes time to build a successful business. However, once your hard work pays off, you will enjoy the seeds that you sowed.
Thanks for your time Miss Akua. I’m super Grateful for granting me this interview. I’m also grateful for your time and the opportunity. Thank you and I’m proud of you.
Do what You can when you can. Don’t be stopped by your Age or current circumstances. There’s a lot you can do or have to do to bless humanity i.e the gifts/talents instilled in you. Start now. Keep Pushing. Your Dreams are Achievable. It’s Possible. Today on Exclusives with SammytheAuthor, an Inspiring Ghanaian Serial Entrepreneur and Artificial Intelligence (AI) Expert, shares with us, his life story and career as an Entrepreneur and Co – founder of Okuafo Foundation. Checkout the Interview Below.
1: Tell us a bit about Yourself. (Family, Career etc) I grew up in a small community in the Ashanti Region. Growing up in a minority dominated community such as mine was challenging as I could barely have access to a computer and the internet. It was hard navigating the Computer Programming scene as there were no mentors or learning resources available to me. I have four amazing siblings who are also in love with STEM and I am really excited about that. A lot of my work is centered around Applied Artificial Intelligence which basically means I look out for ways we can apply new and existing AI technologies to generate real world value and impact.
2: With Your Field as an AI Expert, could you please share with us the Importance of AI Technology? Just like the past Industrial Revolutions, the 21st will be hit by a major technological shift that will impact the way we do everything. At the frontline of the technological shifts is Artificial Intelligence. Like one of my favorite AI Pioneers, Andrew Ng said, “AI is the new electricity” it is clear the impact AI will have on people and industries. With data becoming increasingly available, increase in computing power and the advancement of fundamental research in machine learning, humans are solving problems that seemed impossible a few years ago. ‘…the machines are learning, learning really fast, don’t just sit there mate,learn how they are learning to keep up with what’s coming’ a little pun there :). The impact of AI on jobs will be massive. And No, the robots aren’t coming for your jobs yet. Applications of AI today are mostly targeted at tasks that are considered repetitive and boring, dangerous for humans, assisting in medical diagnosis etc. But as time goes on, the capabilities of AI is advancing rapidly, jobs in the near future will require knowledge in Artificial Intelligence to enable workers function fully as companies go through the AI transformation.
3: Why Okuafo Foundation? What’s the Idea behind it? Okuafo Foundation is a non-profit organization in Ghana working to create the future of Agriculture for rural farmers. Leveraging digital tools and AI, we build technologies that help rural farmers overcome their biggest hurdles; pests and food storage.
4: Any Impact made so far? Our Okuafo AI application is pioneered by 600 farmer leaders. Now powered by DeepFence, our crisis mapping tool. These farmers leaders make our tools available and accessible to about 30,000 smallholder farmers to enable them to detect pests early enough to take action to avoid further damage.
5: How can we use Digital Innovation to counter Corruption in Africa? Most of the corruption happening in Africa is as a result of the lack of digitization of our processes. Due to this, corruption goes undetected. To counter corruption, we need to digitize our economy and activities with systems that are built with strong ethics and integrity. This way, we can easily apply Machine Learning to detect irregular patterns.
6: I understand Challenges are inevitable, what has been your greatest challenge so far? Anything Shareable? So far, I would say my biggest challenge has been navigating the Computer programming scene from a minority dominated community and bridging the gap of access. Managed to get access to the internet through internet cafes.
7: How was the feeling like when you were honored by the UAE? It was really emotional for me and the entire team. I felt my dreams were accomplished, I have always wanted the chance to have a “real impact” on our people and I felt the Zayed Sustainability Prize has made that possible.
8: Kindly Shed more light on the Okuafo AI App? What are some of the Benefits derived by Rural Farmers? The Okuafo AI app allows rural farmers with no literacy background to get insights into what is happening on their farms. Farmers are able to detect pests on their farms early enough and take sustainable actions to fight the pests.
9: What has been your Greatest Fear growing up? Growing up, my daddy had always wanted to take the conventional path to success. He wanted me to get a degree and be an Engineer. The path I am on right now is pretty unconventional and there are lots of uncertainties in Entrepreneurship. Making that decision to take the unconventional path wasn’t easy for me. But here we are, guess we are doing good and poised to solving problems that will otherwise remain unsolved.
10: A Word.of advice for anyone aspiring to be an AI Expert. What are some of the things they need to know before they get started? “Hey buddy, just get started…” The field of AI is very broad and advancing rapidly. Once you get started, you need to focus on a subset that is exciting to you. Keep your eyes on a problem you want to solve and investigate the tools you can use to solve that. If they don’t exist, you create them. When you get started in AI and Machine Learning, you will be greeted by some mathematics which you probably wouldn’t be happy with. But don’t let that scare you, brush your math foundations and you are good to go. “Don’t worry about it if you don’t understand”– Andrew Ng. Keep this in mind. Ciao!
At an event I organized in Ghana about fundraising for your business
Are You suffering from Social Anxiety? Have you imprisoned yourself due to inferiority Complex? Are You looking for ways to break free; break this chain of Fear? Do you find difficulties in choosing a career path? Whatever it is that you’re facing is never permanent. Open Up, be inspired by this interview. Today on Exclusives with SammytheAuthor, an Inspiring Ghanaian Serial Entrepreneur and a Data Scientist, Miss Bridget Boakye, shares with us, her life story and career as an Entrepreneur and Co – founder of ChaleKasa and Women’s Corner Ghana. Checkout the Interview Below.
1: For the benefit of those who might not know you, Who is Miss Bridget Boakye? (Background, Education and Career).
I am a data scientist, entrepreneur, and an author. We will talk about the data science side in subsequent questions so let me focus on the other two attributes.
On the entrepreneurial side, I am the co-founder of ChaleKasa, a bespoke events company curating experiences to connect Diasporans and Africans. Our hallmark events are The Black Gala and The Catalysts Business Symposium held during the December season in Ghana each year. I am also the co-founder of Africans on China, a consultancy and advisory connecting Africans entrepreneurs/students and institutions to China and vice-versa, and the co-founder of Women’s Corner Ghana, a platform to foster dialogue & inspire action among Ghanaian women content creators. I also advise countless technology startups in Ghana and Nigeria, with a focus on 4IR solutions.
On the writing side, I am also the author of “Should I Return”, a book of poetry exploring issues of identity and belonging, especially as it relates to Africa and the Africa Diaspora. I have written 100+ articles with more than 1 million views on platforms such as Face2FaceAfrica and TechCrunch.
2: What’s the Story behind Your personality?
I believe the personality traits that define what I do are curiosity and pro-activeness. I have always been “that person”, ie. The person to call if there is some sort of social issue. I have vivid memories from childhood of being called on when my friends are being bullied and being the only girl in my riding bikes down steep roads with a gang of boys in my neighborhood in North Kaneshie. I generally can’t stand to see issues not being addressed or to feel constrained to societal norms.
I have taken this similar approach with my career. As such, I have sought to address one social issue or the other with the work that I have done and continue to do.
3: Who is a Data Scientist?
According to practitioners, a data scientist is “an analytical data expert who has the technical skills to solve complex problems – and the curiosity to explore what problems need to be solved. They’re part mathematician, part computer scientist and part trend-spotter.” In my eyes, the discipline is really about problem solving and giving people who enjoy interdisciplinary work, a set of tools with which to do so.
Presenting my Data Science project on Skin Recommendations for Black Women.
4: Why Stay X Stay Home? What triggered this Idea?
StayXStayHome is a 2-day innovation conference championing innovation from home. It was a project that we initiated on the onset of large scale event cancellation during the first week of March 2020. With a successful event with 35 speakers and almost 300+ registrants now on our backs, we are looking at ways to develop useful products and opportunities for people to connect with each, innovate, and simply, move the needle on their goals.
5: What inspired your decision to write the book titled “Should I Return”? And what has been the reception so far?
My book, “Should I Return”, is a poetry book about returning to Ghana and wrestling with questions about where I belong as someone who had lived outside of the country for 15+ years, at the time of my return. Writing, and specifically writing poems, is the best way for me to process my emotions and clarify my thinking so I would do it intermittently through my 4-year journey in Ghana. Eventually, I realized my poems told a compelling story about being a “returnee” from Ghana and I decided to compile the work and share it with the world through a book.
6: With Your kind of Love and Passion for Africa, what are some of the measures you are putting in place to help Africa so far as Education is concern?
There are a number of ways in which I try to impact education across the continent. While I’ve taught in classrooms in Ghana and held education entrepreneurs with strategy and curriculum development, one of the most profound ways I impact education at this time is through my Africans on China consultancy. There, we started a Fellowship for university students across Africa called Africans on China Campus Leaders Ambassadors Program (AoCCLAP). Through this program, select young African engage in a 6-month training program to develop their leadership skills through immersive conversations with China-Africa leaders, followed by mentorship, thoughtful-assignments and feedback/support. Today, we have 5 ambassadors across Ghana and Nigeria, and they each have an average of 20 members in their campus chapters of the program. In this way, we are able to multiply the work of developing leaders who have the training and are supported to take initiative on issues.
With AoCCLAP Student Ambassadors at the Jack Ma Africa Netpreneur Prize.
7: In this era of Covid-19, what are some of the things you think can help combat this epidemic. Any Upcoming Project?
Whatever challenges you’re facing, is never permanent; it’s temporary. Don’t let your Pain decieve You; You’re more than a Conqueror. Stay Focused and Continue Building. Today on Exclusives with SammytheAuthor, an Inspiring Nigerian Bright Light, shares with us, his life story and career as a Creative and Millennial Catalyst. Checkout the Interview below.
1: Who is Mr. Skinni Tobi?
Skinny Tobi is a bright light, I help young creatives see the positive in their negatives, to help them see that there’s better & believe they were born for a greater cause.
2: Tell us a bit about yourself (Family, Education, Career etc.)
I am the 2nd of 4 children (2 girls & 2 boys😃😃) , precisely, the first male child.
Earlier on in my life, I knew I was different in everything from the rest of my siblings. I wasn’t the most intelligent, in fact, I always changed schools like i changed clothes due to one issue or the other so it wasn’t hard for me to be easily tagged the black sheep. I’m about 5’10, chocolate skinned, introverted and shy! I’m one person that accepts the labels before people even label me, that’s my greatest strength, which has really worked for me. I’m a dreamer and a rare breed of a creative! I’m selfless and I love social media! My love for social media has brought me to where I am today. I don’t just use social media like the average user, but I try to understand user behaviors, understand the platforms, see what works and use it to my advantage! As a result of my exploits on social media, punch Newspaper also featured me in April, 2018 (https://punchng.com/consistency-is-key-to-growing-a-business-odeyale/)
My university life is a huge part of my progress story today. Almost a decade in both Covenant university & Babcock university taught me a whole lot of lessons about life, most especially about failure. Thankfully, I was able to also gain clarity on what it is I should be doing with my life and what career path to take.
Over the years, I’ve created a couple of social media projects like “KaptionThis” and privileged to work with a couple of brands such as Krispy Kreme, UBA, Jumia, Nokia, UduXMusic, Coca-Cola, 5 Alive etc
3: Share with us things we need to consider in building self-confidence?
Self confidence is an inside job. Self confidence is knowing that whether people accept you for who you are or not, you’ll still be your best self. This is something I teach myself every day.
4: Why do you call yourself, the Millennial Catalyst?
Hahaha! Well, I did tag myself because I’m really passionate and fascinated about the affairs of creative, ambitious & purpose driven millennials. Since I am one myself, it’s very easy to spot persons like that, connect with them intelligently & be a part of their journey as much as possible. So I positioned myself as that person that fires up the millennials to become better version of themselves and to believe in their God given dreams & it wasn’t long before people started tagging me as a “Millennial Catalyst💥” as well.
Although it’s a tag name that might evolve as I’m in a stage where I gain more and more clarity each day.
5: As the Millennial Catalyst, what is your Drive, I mean what is your go-to source, when it comes to fulfilling your Purpose?
My go-to-source has to be my intuition. The voices in my head push me to come home to myself each day. Like I said earlier, I’m in a stage where I gain clarity each day and improving on myself and helping others improve on their journey as well! It’s sling game👊
6: What is your definition for Personal Branding? And what are some of the Steps you took in building your brand?
Personal branding is simply
you being branded/packaged/positioned to meet your tribe/ideal target audience/ideal customer, where they are online.
Personality + Branding
For starters, I didn’t even know what personal branding meant till sometime in June last year, prior to then, I was just all over the place and a random guy online (generalist). Then I met my mentor online, Dave Obada, who I learnt most of what I now know about personal branding.
I became more intentional about how I use my platforms, I started to zero in on what I know best to do and being unapologetic about it across platforms. Basically I’ll say, the steps I took to build my personal brand are; firstly, I realized I couldn’t continue being a generalist and I was tired of just playing around on the Internet. Secondly, I connected with a mentor and he taught me certain things. Thirdly, I immersed myself in podcasts, books and other materials that addressed personal branding and self development.
I’ll say those 3 steps changed the game for me.
7: Define Failure in three Words?
This will be hard. I’m very terrible with sticking to limited number of words when asked this type of question. Permit me to break this rule!
I was listening to Seth Godin last night and he said “If failure is not an option, then success is not an option” and if you think about this, it makes sense. because success is failing and failing again until you find the thing that works.
Thomas Edison invented the light bulb, but he also invented 99 other ways not to make a light bulb💡
My Point: Failure is Feedback.
8: What triggered the idea to start Through Millennial Eyes? What do you seek to achieve with it?
This is a mission similar to the “I have a dream” by Martin Lurther King mission!
“I Believe/Know” that one day every young person out there will be doing work they love and love what they do either with a degree or not!
Most persons has a dream when they were younger, but some where along the way, the world got it’s hands on them and they lost their way.
The goal? To drastically eradicate the depression and feeling unworthy or living an average life by most young persons today!
The “Through Millennial Eyes” is one that could be rebranded sometime soon though!
In Your Journey to Success, You will definitely encounter series of Challenges but sail through it, don’t allow it sail through you. You more than a Conqueror. You have what it takes to make your dreams a Reality. Today on Exclusives with SammytheAuthor, an Inspiring Talented Ghanaian Serial Entrepreneur, shares with us, her life story and career as an Entrepreneur and CEO of DEBLICIOUS CUISINE AND EVENTS and DYNAMIC UNITED STARS AFRICA FOUNDATION. Checkout the Interview Below.
1: Tell us a bit about You, who is Miss. Deborah Oduro?
Miss Deborah Oduro is one talented young lady with many skills you can think of. She is an entrepreneur making so much impact in society with her genius smiles and affectionately called DEBBYQUEEN. The last girl in her family and the fifth born to her parents whom she promised to make proud. Her educational background started at St. Thomas Preparatory School and continued to finish both primary and junior high at Osu Home School after which she failed to attend secondary school just because her childhood best friend was home and wanted school together with her. This made her parents seek admission for both of them into Salem Senior High School and graduated into the nursing school at City of London Business college where she studied General Nursing. She is the founder of DYNAMIC UNITED STARS AFRICA FOUNDATION (DUSAF) which is a charity organization that aims at eradicating poverty in Africa and beyond, Ceo of DEBLICIOUS CUISINE AND EVENTS, DE-QUEENS USHERING AGENCY and DEBSAM BABY PALACE as well as the face behind MC_DEBBYQUEEN.
2: What’s the Story behind Your Personality?
Story behind my personality I will say it’s by Grace.
3: As the Founder & CEO, what inspired your decision to commence Dynamic United Stars Africa Foundation (Dusaf)? Starting my NGO has always been with me. I always want to make people smile and leave an impact.
4: What is your take on Youth Unemployment in Ghana? Anything Sharable?
We have made ourselves slave to unemployment. The youth nowadays want everything fast without going through the process. Jobs are available but they feel too big to serve. Before anyone becomes a master, he or she must serve.
5: What other services do you offer under De-Queens Ushering Agency?
DE-QUEENS USHERING AGENCY IS A FULL SERVICE EVENT MANAGEMENT HUB IN GHANA AVAILABLE TO HELP CLIENTS HAVE A UNIQUE PERFECT BRANDING EVENTS AT AFFORDABLE PRICES. WE OFFER USHERING, PROTOCOL AND MODELS FOR 📍CORPORATE EVENTS 📍WEDDINGS & ENGAGEMENTS 📍CONFERENCE & SEMINARS 📍PARTIES AND FUNERALS 📍PRODUCT ACTIVATIONS 📍ADVERTISEMENT & COMMERCIALS 📍AWARDS Our team consist of both male and female professionals.
6: In your quest to achieve your set goals, what are some of the Challenges You encountered or still facing?
Challenges I faced were a lot but will share a few. It’s difficult for a lady to make it without the male trying to use its intelligence. Only 10% of Ghanaian men are real and genuine when it comes to supporting females. Some bosses instead of assisting you to accomplish your goals feel too scared you might over take them and therefore sabotage you making you feel you can’t do anything without them. Society thinks independent women sleep around which is false. Raising capital is a big problem just as getting sponsors to support your vision.
7: In your line of business and from journey so far as an Entrepreneur, how would You define Failure?
Failure is when one allows fear to control its mind. When you scared of something, you turn to listen to everyone without believing in your capabilities which drags you into failure. You are your own vision car and you only can drive only if you pay attention to the road signs.