As a person of mixed Ghanaian and Irish heritage, my travels have been a journey of discovery, unveiling a shared narrative of resistance and distrust in various societies, from Ireland to the Dominican Republic, Ghana, South Africa, and the diverse neighborhoods of London.
In Ireland, a place intertwined with my heritage, I observed a spirit of resistance, a common thread prevalent in many societies I've visited. This resistance isn't solely societal; it's deeply personal, especially when navigating interactions with well-established, older institutions.
The escalating distrust in governments and large institutions stands starkly evident in global events, such as vaccine hesitancy during the COVID-19 pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement. This scepticism poses a critical barrier to progress that urgently requires sensitive addressing.
My vision revolves around reconciliation and understanding. I advocate for a shift in dialogue and approach, steering away from the conventional, often colonialist perspectives. My aim is to bridge the gap between communities and institutions, nurturing trust and mutual respect.
At the core of my philosophy lies the concept of decolonisation. I argue that many issues faced by communities today stem from a 'colonised lens,' which fails to acknowledge or address the impacts of colonization and post-traumatic slave syndrome. This perspective extends beyond geographical colonization, encompassing intellectual and cultural domination that continues to marginalise diverse voices and experiences.
I stress the importance of engaging with communities on the frontlines, connecting with those often excluded from traditional research and discourse. This engagement isn't just about gathering data; it's about understanding nuanced, contrarian insights that can drive transformative change. It's about listening to the voices historically ignored or silenced by the system.
I conclude with a powerful call to action, underscoring the dire need for opportunity and empowerment in communities that are 'starving,' not only for food but for recognition, respect, and the chance to thrive. I invite readers, particularly those from corporate and governmental sectors, to join me in this mission of understanding, engagement, and decolonisation.
My reflections from Ireland and beyond serve as a poignant reminder of the work that lies ahead. It's a journey of breaking down barriers, comprehending the impact of historical injustices, and constructing bridges of trust and collaboration. My call to action isn't merely an invitation; it's a clarion call for a collective effort towards a more inclusive, understanding, and equitable world.