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Sandy Alibo spent the past few years building and promoting Surf Ghana, the very first Surf and skate crew to come from Ghana.

CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT THE PROJECT “SURF GHANA” AND HOW
DID IT ALL START?

Surf Ghana is a collective of surfers and skateboarders based in Ghana founded in 2016 by Sandy Alibo. The collective collects used sports equipment in Europe and the U.S and teach the youth how to skate and surf, organize numerous events during the year to promote the surf and skate culture in Ghana.

For example, The Skatetour Gh, Noise!, MASS, Skate Gal Club, are our signature events (for us and made by us). This year, we’ve just started to create a program to develop job opportunities and we team up with brands like Jameson, MTN, United Nations, etc.

It all started in March 2016 in Busua, a fishermen village in the Western Region of Ghana. We met Peter, Ben, Justice all surfers.  We started an Instagram account to showcase this beautiful area of Ghana and tell the stories of these new athletes. They received a lot of good feedback on social media about this initiative from Ghana but also from the diaspora living abroad. And with a little elbow grease, we started some surf lessons and skate lessons with the local community.

surf Ghana

WHAT IS THE GOAL BEHIND SURF GHANA?

We use the practice of extreme sports as a driver for diversity in education, social inclusion, and empowerment of the youth. Surf Ghana is a voice of diversity that pushes a narrative of freedom and self-expression creating a counter-culture, a platform for the Youth. Our collective also wants to improve physical and mental health. For example in Ghana, life expectancy is currently 63 years, and in Europe, it is 81 years. We think skateboarding and surfing can offer full-body workout and reduce major health problems in Ghana like diabetes and obesity. Also, we create a platform for local artists to promote a culture of tolerance, respect, and celebrate African young creatives.Finally, we teamed up with talented local artists like Art Soul Kojo, Ahmed Partey, David Alabo, Awo Tsegah…

Our main goal is to create a sporting ecosystem that could benefit sports athletes and Ghana as a tourist destination. Plus, our next project is to create the first skatepark in Ghana in 2020: A safe space to practice sport and to connect the youth through art.

surf Ghana

WHO ARE THOSE INVOLVED IN THE SURF GHANA PROJECT?

We can count today 25 active members based in Accra, Busua, Krokrobite, Kwahu, Kumasi. They all practice skateboarding or surfing and they also contribute as filmmakers, photographers, writers, artists, journalists, carpenter, mixologists, etc. Joshua, Justice, Kwaku, Addy, Mensah, OG, Sandy, Kuukua, Lauren, Jovita, Harmonie, Sarah, Anastasia, Ria, Ben and many more.

Moreover, we have implemented the process of design thinking in our collective (zero hierarchy, brainstorming culture, test and learn the process, WhatsApp group culture) to grow faster and try a new way to work in Ghana that can directly benefit the youth and help them to be a better entrepreneur. Spmething like a youth leadership program, maybe ?

TELL US ABOUT WOMEN AND SKATEBOARDING IN GHANA?

Skateboarding is new in Ghana. And in the past 5 years, less than 10 girls tried to practice it regularly. Despite the fact that our events were opened to everybody, girls and women didn’t seem interested.

Therefore, seeing this, in June 2019, Sandy Alibo (Founder of Surf Ghana) and Kuukua Eshun (a Ghanaian writer and filmmaker) decided to create the skate girl club, an initiative to empower women through skateboarding. The main goal is to connect creatives women and improve their wellbeing. The access to the club is free and the organization offers skateboarding lessons and also different art workshops (tye and dye tee-shirt, water painting, gardening workshop, nail art) and activities like yoga, hula hoop, soul sister circle, etc. We count now more than 60 active members who come regularly at our monthly meet-up.

This project is a success, we received so much support and positive feedback about this initiative.

 

CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT THE BIRTH OF SKATE TOUR GHANA?

The skate tour is our annual road trip that we plan with 20 Skateboarders, filmmakers, photographers, event managers, web developers, etc.

With the help of the tour, we get the opportunity to meet all kinds of children from different towns that have different backgrounds. We are trying to build a community that children can rely on. For our last trip, we taught up more than 1000 children how to skateboard in exactly 12 days. In the past two years, we toured in Busua, Cape Coast, Cape three points, Takoradi, Abonom, Accra, Kumasi, Peki, Ada, Akosombo, Ho, Keta, Ada, and even Lomé.

We believe, this project has a huge positive impact in the Ghanaian community and above all has encouraged the youth to practice sport to improve their mental and emotional wellbeing. Moreover, we believe traveling is the best way for Ghanaians to discover their own truth.

Surf Ghana

African Women’s Legacy: From Hatshepsut to Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

HOW DO WE GET MORE WOMEN TO PRACTICE SPORTS IN
GHANA, AND IN AFRICA?

For example, the number of attendees at the Skate Gal Club keep increasing and prove than Women-only spaces are a necessity. This, because they provide an opportunity where women can talk about anything from skateboarding to mixology, from fashion to domestic violence and more, all in a “safe space”.

However, for this project, we aren’t attempting to change Ghanaian’s mind about feminism; we’re creating a space where all women can talk about whatever the subject might be.

We also noticed that in Ghana, many women find physical training in the presence of men to be intimidating. Plus, we think that creating this kind of welcoming, inclusive, safe spaces could be handily accomplished by providing exclusive places for women and girls to train.

HOW DO YOU EXPECT SURF GHANA TO IMPACT WOMEN IN
SPORTS AND IN GENERAL?

Our collective craves a space to call women, where they don’t have to feel threatened, hit on, talked over, or mansplained to. Where they can learn from each other, feel positive and get inspired.

We hope that with this project, we can create a better equal representation of women and men.

Through extreme sport, women practice being open and authentically themselves, we think that we help give them the courage to feel more comfortable in Ghana, knowing that a skate gal club is here and got their back.

 

Last week we had a chat with Okiinshowara from Ivory coast, We continue our series of discoveries of African creatives. We are pleased  to feature Derrick O Boateng from Ghana. He is a contemporary Art photographer who was born in Ghana and resides in Accra.

Portraying beauty is one of Derrick’s main aims, because he strives to change perceptions about Ghana and Africa in general through his Art.

 

Hi, can you introduce yourself to our readers… Who is Derrick O Boateng?

I am Derrick Ofosu Boateng. I was born on the 2nd of June. I attended Kumasi High school in the Ashanti Region of Ghana and I am currently a student at the University of Ghana business school. I am a fan of Soccer, music and watching movies.

How did your encounter with photography come about?

My encounter into Photography was quite Unexpected. I realized I was into photography when followers on Instagram kept commenting under my post that I had Good images and should keep it up.

How powerful is photography in changing people’s perceptions about Africa?

Photography has always being a Tool to interact with different people in different places. The stories told with photography are exceptional, emotional and live. Some Photographies portray Africa in a positive way and it strongly changes the perception and mindset about Africa. I have had so many testimonies on the fact that my photography has changed their perceptions about Africa and it feels so great.

Can you talk us through  a specific example of a photo you have taken and its “back story”? What inspired you to take this specific image? What specifically about the situation you witnessed did you want to capture?

The story about this man and lots of people I have listen, who have similar stories inspired me to

create this picture.”

Fabrics

I spoke to Baba Abdul Mohammed about his cloth business and why he came to Ghana. Baba Abdul Mohammed is from Niger and he is in Ghana to make a better living to reach his family in Niger. I asked him why he came to Ghana and he explained to me that making life better in His country is a bit difficult as compared to Ghana. He also said, aside from his cloth business, he does sell herbal medicine and beads.

He ended saying he finds peace and freedom living in Ghana.

#Africancreativeseries: Meet Mobile Photographer, Derrick O Boateng From Ghana

Is there a particular story you are trying to tell with your photography?

 

Who or what influences you?

My main mission as a photographer is to change the bad perceptions and mindset about Africa. Also, I want my pictures to promote love among People. I also want to showcase the rich and extraordinary lifestyles and cultures of We Africans which the world has not recognized.

Where do you see the future of photography heading within the continent? What is the future?

Photography in Africa is growing with Time and it looks great. A lot of young people have started fond interest in it and they are changing the world with their images. I see African Photographers winning all big competitions and changing the lives of people.

 

What is your creative process like? Where do you start? Where do you get your ideas?

My Creative process is quite simple and easy. Firstly I find concepts and it normally comes from the environment, People, music, and imaginations. I search for the needed materials for the

pictures. I then look for preferable models and locations for the pictures. I personally direct the

models and shoot them. After the shoot, I sit quietly and edit

 

What is your particularity and your unique selling point as a Ghanaian creative?

I think my unique selling point is the type of images I bring out and the inspiration People get from. A lot of people see my uniqueness as clock blocks and others also think the use of children which are fine.

#Africancreativeseries: Meet Mobile Photographer, Derrick O Boateng From Ghana

 

According to you, what is the way for creative Africans to make themselves known and make a living from their art?

I think the best way to get known as a creative person is to work hard and be very consistent on your work. I believe everyone should have a particular style as a creative in order for his works to be known everywhere. Branding and interacting with people who appreciate your works is also very important

#AfricanCreativesSeries : Meet Okiinshowara, Ivorian, Self-Taught Photographer

What is it like to be a young creative in your country and what  are your daily struggles as a young Ghanian creative?

The Problem as a young creative is no interest and value from the People in our localities. My struggles are difficulties in finding some needed materials for a project and a lack of enough capital to finish a project.

 

This week, MoyoAfrika has selected for you the dopest sounds on the continent that you must listen to, to be up to date on your playlists, let’s go!

Buju is a 21-year-old Nigerian as also known as one of the newest faces and most promising stars of Afrofusion today.  He is the genius behind those bangers: “Spiritual” and “L’enu“. His enchanting voice and vivid and harmonious melodies are his signature, then come the importance he puts on the lyrics and his effortless ability to freestyle on every type of beats.

Watch and listen to his latest music below!

Back in 2017, J Hus blessed our ears with his fantastic debut album “Common Sense” and it was huge because it was playing a major part in expanding UK rap’s horizons to include African and Caribbean sounds, earned gold sales figures and Brit and Mercury nominations. Following this, it was put in jail in 2018 for knife possession, and by mid-2019 he was on top again, sharing the O2 stage with Drake, performing at Wireless Festival and appearing on Skepta and Ed Sheeran albums.

He released “Big Conspiracy“, a project mostly produced by his long-time producer JAE5. J Hus gave us here summer vibe, dope lyrics.

From the melodic dancehall of Repeat, sung by new Jamaican star Koffee, to the spy theme bass of “Helicopter” you will find the song who perfectly fits your mood.

They did it first on Burna boy’s projectOutside” on “Sekkle down“, J hus Teamed up with Hislondon friend again, on “Play Play“, listen to this masterpiece below!

We discover “The Cavemen” mostly via Lady Donli‘s “Enjoy your life” album where we find so many gems, and incredible underground talents. It is a Ghanaian band, in love with smooth highlife ballads. They share with us lately her very anticipated love highlife inspired ballad “Runaway Lady“, a culture-rich articulation of romantic feelings from them atop instrumentals flush with local and traditional sounds. The band’s signature shaky drum is the highlight of this love affair.

  • IYABO” of Guiltybeatz, Joey B and Falz

Guiltybeatz awarded Nigerian producer/Dj collaborates with Joey B and Falz to give us a dancing song, produced by himself under Empawa, the label of Mr Eazi. It is a taste of the upcoming project “Different” of the producer.

Listen and watch the video below!

Niniola, the current queen of Afrohouse, author of major hits such as “Maradona Riddim”  a song DJ Snake remixed, then Drake requested it on a live radio program, and Beyoncé interpolated it on “Find Your Way Back.”, and “Boda Sodiq” remixed recently by Timbaland, releases her new single “Omo Rapala” produced by  Sarz.

Omo Rapala is a slick instrumental hook who seems to be designed to inspire popular dance videos on social media mixed with a catchy melody.

Watch and listen to the song below!

Fireboy, as we speak of him in our recent #MAPLAYLIST, is YBNL’s new face. He is very talented and was discovered with the infectious hit “Jealous” who was a huge success in Nigeria and abroad. Recently, Olamide’s protege release the video of “Energy” the track who is opening his first album “Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps” who surpassed recently 100 millions of streams on all streaming platforms combined.

Watch the visuals below!

South African / American Collabo as Kwesta comes through with”I Came I Saw” featuring Maybach Music Boss Rick Ross. The song will not come as a surprise to his fans having been filmed with Rick Ross in Gauteng, South Africa many months ago. We can witness a dope beat, really delightful

Watch the visuals and listen to the song below!

Nigerian award-winning rapper, Vector dished out a new single titled “Alaye Jor Jor Jor” which is track 6 off his just-released Extended Play “VIBES BEFORE TESLIM: The Journey To Self Discovery“. The rapper dropped here a real anthem, with catchy lyrics and interesting visuals

Watch the video and listen to the song below!

  • Blow” Of Wizkid and Blaq Jerzee

We talk about it recently when Wizkid dropped “Soundman Vol 1”, a solid EP with contributions from Chronixx, Blaq Jerzee, London and Kel P. He released the visuals of “Blow” and we suggest it to watch it below!

After Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo announced how 2019 would serve as the “Year of Return,” there has been a plethora of activities to commemorate the 400 year anniversary of the Transatlantic Slave Trade.

The Ghana Tourism Authority reports having had 750,000 foreign visitors in 2019 despite expecting 500,000 in the year. With a few weeks left to the end of the year Ghana’s tourism authority expects the numbers to rise to 1 million foreign visitors.

Solo travel is one of the most rewarding adventures a person can have in their life. We are already excited for you!

Solo travel in Africa is an incredibly rewarding and awesome experience, but it’s always a bit daunting when you are travelling to a new place or a new country and especially to a new continent by yourself . So when you start to plan your trip to Africa, the first question you’ll probably ask is where should I go?