I’m on the final leg of my West Africa trip. I’ve been meeting with GILLBT (Ghana Institute of Linguistics, Literacy and Bible Translation). We’ve been working together on a strategy for external publicity in Ghana. Basically, thinking about how to raise awareness in Ghana about opportunities for involvement in Bible translation and related work.
This is a good group. I’ve mostly just posed questions and let them discuss the issues raised. We’ve discussed organizational identity, messaging, and projecting the right image. About a year ago we began this discussion, but there wasn’t enough time for us to go to this level of detail.
From Kenya to South Africa to Ghana to Czech Republic to Germany–we’ve seen World Cup fever everywhere! This was our first time to really experience World Cup excitement. I don’t remember it being a very big deal at home. So many people everywhere else we’ve been these last few months were into it that we both found ourselves checking the scores and watching some parts of games.
We were in South Africa in late February during the lead up to the games and saw two of the game venues (Soccer City in Soweto and Green Point Stadium in Cape Town). Preparations for the World Cup were still in full swing and many shops were already full of World Cup souvenirs.
I was in Ghana during the first week of the World Cup. A street was blocked off downtown for a screen and projector set up for game viewing. While I waited at the Accra, Ghana airport for my flight back to Kenya, the England vs. USA match was on. Everyone cheered every time a goal was scored.
In Austria at the meetings we attended there, we both saw some of the Germany vs. Ghana game at Schloss Klaus. Nearly everyone in the castle was watching the game…and cheering for Germany.
We saw World Cup fans in Prague watching the South Korea vs. Uruguay game on two large screens set up in the middle of Old Town Square. In addition to this viewing, many restaurants also had TVs for game viewing.
A highlight of this World Cup for us was being in Berlin the day the German soccer team beat England. We were there after our meetings in Austria and after a brief visit in Czech Republic.
Wow, the city was alive. We’ve never seen so many people so psyched about winning a soccer game. We were just walking around town, but we could hear people in their homes, at restaurants and at other viewing points cheer every time Germany scored. We enjoyed being part of their celebrations.
Congratulations to Spain for winning the tournament!
I’ve heard those stories in the US about a wealthy person or celebrity being buried in their favorite car or taking their favorite golf club to the grave.
In city of Teshie in Ghana, you can also be buried in a car…
…or rather a coffin shaped like a car or a truck
…or a pineapple, or a fish, camera, bottle of coke–whatever you want!
Teshie is the home of design or fantasy coffins, also called Abebuu adekai (boxes with proverbs) in a local language. These amazing creations began with designer Seth Kane Kwei in the 1950s. Since then, these coffin creations have been showcased not only in many funerals in Ghana, but also in museums around the world. Someone said that when Jimmie Carter came to Ghana, that he put in an order. I could see why he might.
Our friend Ommani from Nairobi tried out the ice-cream sundae coffin. I wanted to try the Canon camera one, but alas, the lining hadn’t yet been put in.
I’ve been in Accra, Ghana this week participating in a workshop about comprehensive planning. Mostly, I’ve been listening to and learning from my Kenyan colleagues and an American colleague who are the trainers on this new method of planning our organization is implementing. However, I also came to help by doing a presentation on communicating with external publics.
This new way of planning that is being implemented encourages our organizations to think more about planning on a bigger level, often on a country or regional level, as opposed to often planning on the language community level. It’s also exciting because our teams are being encouraged to build stronger connections with new and existing organizational partners and include them in their plans and planning processes.
This workshop is being done for our Ghanaian organization called GILLBT (Ghana Institute of Linguistics, Literacy and Bible Translation), so that they can make preparations to do this type of planning. What we hope for through this process is that language communities in this country and other locations working on these plans will receive scriptures in their languages quicker and that more attention will be able to be given to their wholistic needs beyond language including things like education, agriculture, and health.
Photos by Zeke du Plessis (photos added March 31, 2010)
NAIROBI, KENYA–Scripture translations are in progress in six African sign languages which are located in Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Burundi and Ethiopia. Translation teams are starting by translating a set of ChronologicalBible Stories, checking, revising, recording them on video, and preparing to distribute them on DVDs. Thirty-two stories in Kenyan Sign Language will be dedicated January 16-17, 2010.
Sign language is not universal–there are more than 100 sign languages in the world. More sign languages are still being discovered and documented. Each sign language has its own unique vocabulary and grammar. They are not related to the spoken languages of an area.
The opinions expressed in this blog are our own and do not necessarily reflect those of our organization. Advertisements that appear on our blog do not necessarily reflect items we would personally purchase or promote.