Self-Proclaimed Hermit in Accra, Ghana

Name: Chadia Mathurin
Age: 28
Sex: Female
Location: Accra, Ghana

I am alarmingly removed from many things COVID-19. I say my removal is alarming because I feel like I should have a greater sense of fear for the havoc this unseen scourge is going to wreak on world economies. I say alarmingly removed because I feel like I should have more thoughts on how world governments should address the matter. I say alarmingly removed because I feel like I should project my voice as one of reason and wisdom coming from the Christian community. But I don’t nor have I, on either count. I am quiet, unshaken and giving very little focus to the subject except for the areas in which I think it can become some sort of tool for the advancement of my cause. Ummm… yes. Sometimes I’m ashamed of it, but entrepreneurship has taught me to search for opportunity, even in the most dire of circumstances. But, I digress.

My sense of removal from the discussions surrounding this global pandemic is perhaps due to the fact that I have stopped spending copious amounts of my time watching and reading world news. It’s made for me a bit of a happy bubble which for the most part, I stay in. But sometimes I venture out. 

Today, I venture out.  

I am curious about the role which stories can play in all of this. I am curious as to what will come out of people from Africa and the Caribbean sharing their stories of how this is impacting their lives and their businesses and what they’re doing during a time where many governments are imposing lock-downs and curfews. Have they lost jobs? Are they now doing their jobs in different ways? Has it changed their social dynamics? Have they spent more time with family? How do they feel about all of this? Are they as removed as I am or are they panicking? Do you plan on gardening more after this? Are you playing more board games?

My curiosity has resulted in me taking the lead. I’m going to be the first to share my story on this platform, and hope that others will follow.

My base is currently Accra, Ghana. We currently have 6 confirmed cases and though that number is likely to grow, the government has done, in my opinion, an excellent job of disseminating information and putting in place safeguarding measures. As with anything that is the product of humanity, there is room to improve on policies and actions, but I am pleased with what has currently been put in place, especially the travel advisory, and for the most part, I feel safe in Ghana.

As of now, I am in between phases in life. I am building and growing Wakonté, working on short-term remote projects while doing work that positions our branding and marketing arm as a major player in communications for international development. With that said, my routine hasn’t changed much. I still get up every day, spend some time studying for a certification that I am trying to attain, and imagine ways to help my people grasp the power of stories; stories that we can shape and own.

Some people in Ghana have complained about increased electricity disruptions since the government imposed measures, but I haven’t had any issues since. I happily sit on the couch, search for remote working opportunities, write books, proposals, email and content, liaise with my team, and tweak our websites.

As a self-proclaimed almost-hermit, COVID-19 hasn’t affected my life too much. I don’t have too much going in my space that necessitates my presence outdoors, and COVID-19 is likely to facilitate my love for “social distancing”. 

On second thought, I may end up making less food orders via Jumia, and cook a bit more, but for the most part, my routine remains.

Please share your #QuarantinedAfrica stories with us. Have you lost your job? Are you now doing your job in different ways? Has it changed your social dynamics? How? Have you spent more time with family? How do you feel about all of this? Do you plan on gardening more after this? Are you playing more board games?

Email your stories to chadia@wakonte.com or via WhatsApp at +13472921603

1 comment
  1. Greetings from Canada where the govt has also been very proactive in trying to mitigate the spread of the disease. The new normal is no more coffee shop or fast food meetings – take out or drive through only. Movie theaters and gyms are closed. Schools are closed indefinitely. We have been assured that no kids will fail as a consequence and will all advance to the next grade. At least here, the govt has anticipated what this will mean in terms of lost jobs, inability to pay rents or mortgages for those who will inevitably loose their jobs. I wonder what steps countries in developing countries, including Ghana are taking in this regard and the opportunity for abuse of such offerings. We pray that this too shall pass. Stay safe.

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