F2FA “I’m Coming Home: A journey of rediscovery through the lands of our people and with every footprint in the sands feel more connected to our continent.”
Who: Rebekah Frimpong
Where: Kenya and Uganda
Why: The MaMa Africa Program
I went to Africa for about 10 days and I traveled to Kenya and Uganda to work on my humanitarian project, the MaMa Africa Program. I set up this program to assist mothers in need in Africa and the US to provide them with things they may need before and after their pregnancies. Right now maternal healthcare is one of the most under funded and increasingly important health issue in the world. My program will help mothers in 10 African countries and the three US and will hopefully be a blueprint of sorts for other countries and regions of the world to follow.
Photo Credit: Rebekah A. Frimpong, Gilbert F. Daniels, and Burney MC (pictures taken of me done by Gilbert and Burney, and all others me)
Now you may ask; why do this Rebekah? Well, because we all came from the woman…we all have mothers, and my mother was my best friend and I dedicate everything positive I do in my life in honor of her memory. The MaMa Africa Program celebrates motherhood, women, and children. I was able to connect with about 40 mothers in Kenya and Uganda during my trip. I interviewed them, recorded video interviews, and gave them some things they really needed. I got to sit down with these women and hear their stories and their issues. The experience was so real, and so inspirational, and I know that the work I am doing is appreciated by these women. Now I face the task of making my program better and connecting to the 8 other African countries I am seeking out to be a part of my program. In Kenya I worked with HealthRight International, my fiscal sponsor, and in Uganda I worked with the Bavubuka Foundation, along with two woman’s groups. I hope to build relations with all the organizations to make the MaMa Africa Program a successful community fixture.
Lastly, while in Uganda and Kenya I also worked on two other humanitarian projects and efforts. I have an environmental project called Vanishing Seeds and I was able to connect with environmentalists in Uganda and Kenya and partially document on film the work they are doing in their countries in regards to deforestations, reforestations, and creating alternative energy resources. Then in Uganda I got to connect with the youth Hip-hop community as well as meet with some Ugandan poets and skateboarders. It was so refreshing to see how the youth of Uganda are transforming their communities and creating art and movements that help give their love ones hope. I was able to mentor and teach the youth about film, new media, poetry, environmental issues, and more. The friendships I made will last forever. I was so touched and so at home with my new family in Uganda that I have decided in the next two years I will be moving to Africa to continue to build.
So, what is next for me and the MaMa Africa Program? I will be making a few short documentary films about my trip and mini web-episodes to post on the website. I will be planning my next trip to Africa to visit Ghana, Senegal, and Sierra Leone. And as usual; I will keep grindin’ and making moves with positive movements. I will keep working with and encouraging African youths and youths worldwide to be the "change" they want to see.
Rebekah A. Frimpong is a filmmaker, poet, mentor, and community activist.
She is the founder of The MaMa Africa Program and Reel Worldwide Underground Link (RWUL).