Today, I wrap up my tales of an NSS teacher with a sort of throwback or call it my reflections over the past year. And this is to you National Service Scheme (NSS) personnel posted to a deprived district/rural community.
Dear NSS personnel,
For starters, I must admit that during my first week I began to wonder if I had made the right decision. Seeing the state of affairs at my host town, I was quite itchy about how everything will turn out.
Take for instance Okada (motorbike) as a means of transport, that one alone was more than a horror movie! Till now I do not know how I braved the odds to accept travelling with Okada. Na Internet too no dey job for my side of town (I called it ‘internet fluctuations’) Hmm in this age where one can’t simply live without internet! And then the language barrier. Boy, the gravity of the choice I had made really dawned on me during those early moments!
But then someone said something to me. “This is National service, I guess you have been posted to where your services are needed then.” As simple as that statement was, it got to me. It reminded me of the reason why I had chosen to go in the first place. To play a significant role in the National service scheme (NSS), I began to look at things that way.
Personal development. My dear, really this is all that matters. This is what I zeroed in on when I came to terms with the challenging circumstances that surrounded me. I realized that my ‘AC colleagues’ were not so different from me. In that, we all had a point to prove in our job search. To convince our employers that we can add value to their organizations. So if I could continually add value to myself and develop myself in a way I found meaningful then I was still in the ‘competition’. Agree?
Serving as a teacher for me was beneficial. I had quite some time on my hands. For reading, sightseeing, reflecting, and engaging in other voluntary activities. It was flexible. I did my work and still had a wonderful time with my community, getting acquainted and being a part of it. Indeed that did me a whole lot of good!
Charlie! You would have no need to rush into bed, only to rush out of it to catch a bus at dawn. I mean there is no traffic to wake up to in the morning. Doesn’t that sound like a real treat already pal? It was heavenly if you ask me. So on and on I could add up to my daily to-do list. I could do so much in a day and so can you.
In districts like this
Note also that in places like this, one cannot have it all (everything you need to make life comfortable). Certain groceries are even not available because shop owners will not risk selling something that will only be purchased by a few. I think that simply means less canned food and more fresh food. And that means healthy eating.
So really it is about how you choose to look at things you see?
You will meet people who have not had any more socialization than what they observe every day. Their views on issues may not be what you usually meet. So you observe, ask questions, get to understand them and relate with them accordingly. You will be able to engage them easily if keep adjusting and adapting.
A word from my colleagues
Work like you will do if it were for God.
Realize that wherever you are is part of Ghana-your country, and so loyal service to the people there means loyal service to the country.
Be a part of the people, treat them well and you are sure to get their support and help anytime you need it. Remember you are away from home.
Let your work go beyond duties, go for impact. Make sure you brighten that corner better than you met it!
Doris-former NSP teacher at Shai Osudoku district.
Living in these places can be costly since retailers travel quite a distance to buy goods from the Capital cities or major towns.
So mind how you spend your money.
The thing is you are living on your own, paying rent, utility bills, etc. Do you get the drift?
Nana Yaw-former NSP, Lab technician; Dodowa clinic, Shai Osudoku district
Related: My Story: Unemployment In Ghana
Taking up the challenge; Foresight with courage
To do this, for me, was challenging.
I think it takes courage to look ahead and be able to say that not serving in an organization directly concerned with one’s field of study is not detrimental.
But then, there isn’t a cast in stone path for career development. Your career path is unique to you. You choose what to admit or not to, dependent on where you want to get to. And actually, you will get to your desired destination in your career, only by taking intentional measures to build it.
So let’s just say I looked ahead and realized that serving in this capacity will not cost me anything so I took it. What about you? What if you are not certain of this? Well, you never know what skill is embedded in that portfolio unless you take it up and be diligent at it. It will certainly come handy someday. Trust me.
So while you are at it look around. Identify a problem or a project for yourself. You will be amazed at the things you will notice. Then be innovative; get ideas, discuss it with interested persons. Find solutions to them. You could be on your way to a big achievement in your life, you could be an entrepreneur before you know it!
I am just saying unless the conditions are beyond that which you can bear, enjoy the place while you can. You have decided to do 8 hours of your day under NSS for a year, and you should make that count for something. Definitely.
And O! There were the scorpions that sent some home within a few weeks and the snakes that met some of us at our doorsteps and got us pacing to and fro in our rooms all night long! Hmm!
Chill out, dear. It was just because of the weather conditions at the time. Haha!
But hey serving as a teacher for NSS without a background in the teaching craft was not so bad. You will do just fine if that’s your situation too.
JUST THINK ON THESE THINGS…
NB: My AC colleagues definitely have no tales to tell…Agree? hahahahaahhahahaha!!!!!
NSS teacher always
Other Stories by Margaret
- An NSS Teacher tales: Asutuare
- Tales of an NSS Teacher: allawa
- Tales of an NSS Teacher: Our Day
- An NSS teacher: trotro on the mountain
- Tales of an NSS teacher: classroom management
- Tales of an NSS teacher: A Date at the rice farms
- An NSS Teacher: Ek3 mini
- Tales of an NSS Teacher: May Day
- Tales of an NSS Teacher: Today
- The Magic Carpet: An Aladdin Inspired Story (Candy Replies)
- We are Ghanaians everywhere!
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