Photo by Toby Silverman.

On July 26, UCSC student Amanda Timoney will be embarking on a trip through the University of California Education Abroad Program to Ghana. While staying in Accra — Ghana’s capital — she plans to help the local refugees and villagers as best she can, meanwhile studying at the University of Ghana, which is 10 miles northeast of the capital.


City on a Hill Press: What organization(s) will you be working with while in Ghana?

Timoney: As of right now it’s my own project — I’ll be working with both fisheries in Accra and in rural villages. Ghana is very popular for digital dumping as well, mostly computers, but they come from all over the world.

CHP: What do you hope to bring back to UCSC?

Timoney: Well, at the moment I’m really active in College Ten’s core theme of social justice and community. I’m planning on making a blog while abroad to turn into a complementary documentary and share some of the things I learn as well as some of the culture I live through.

CHP: How prepared are you for the culture shock you’re about to experience?

Timoney: I’m excited for it. A lot of people get nervous about not being accepted — I like the idea of working on a clean slate and being challenged to live in that culture. Also I hear that American women get proposed to on the streets pretty often, so I’m excited for that — might just tie the knot there.

CHP: Where does the drive to connect with people come from?

Timoney: It’s like being a new kid at the first day in school. I was always that one kid that never really connected with the society around me but always seemed to have things figured out. When I see people who need my help, I just want to connect with them and help them however I can. I have a great life and everything I need. I just want to share that.

CHP: Why Ghana?

Timoney: I feel that the Congo is one of the most challenged places in the world right now. Ghana takes in a lot of refugees from the Congo, and since A: I’m a woman and B: I’m American, I feel as though I wouldn’t be able to do as much for the people in the Congo directly other than draw lots of attention to myself. This is the best place for me to go and help those people.