Amidst the battered but recovering people, culture and traditions of Africa, is the wholesome and vibrant phenomenon of Drums and Drumming. Drums occupy a cardinal role in our culture and traditions since the era of Kemet, Kush and Nubia. It is therefore of great interest how the culture and traditions of drums and drumming have remained wholly intact from the brutal pressures of foreign invasions.
Drums and Drumming are essentially a communication system among the living, and between the living and our Ancestors. It is a language for the cultured and initiated. Drums and Drumming are therefore a sophisticated system. They rally the community, excites and incites our Spiritual Guides and also entertains us. It cannot be oblivious of the cultured eye, neither can it escape the conscious of Art, both the aesthetics and symbolisms of a well crafted drum designs.
It must also be emphasized that the design of drums have every connection to the sound they elicit. Not least a worthy note is the fact that all materials of the African drum are of natural source and handcrafted. The tanned leather is from the skin of animals. The sculpted wood is from raw timber. The drumsticks, the brass and other metal adornments are all nature and hand fabrications.
The drums come in a variety of compositions. We have the fontomfrom, kete, adowa, apatampa just to mention a few of the Southern Ghana compositions. Such a cardinal feature of our traditions and culture wholly withstanding the notorious foreign culture rape for thousands of years is most inspiring. This inspiration is a great symbol of Hope for our endurance spirit. Hope that we can fully recover from the destruction of our systems as a cultured people.
It is from this vintage, venerable and veritable hope inspired by the drum, that we are fully assured of healing, restoration and projection of African Culture, Traditions and Systems. We R uS, our charity organization was birthed on the above premise. WeRuS is a charity organization themed and anchored on Empowerment of Traditional Communities.
The main pillars for this agenda of Traditional Empowerment are Health, Housing, Agriculture and Livelihoods. We seek to innovate to modify traditional systems, and not to abandon and import whole foreign systems. We can only have the competitive advantage in our socio-cultural and economic development with our indigenous systems.
Secondly, our traditional systems are not rudimentary and archaic. They are potently nature based, and rooted on deep and unmatched philosophical concepts. Indeed, as it is evidently re-emerging, it is only the Green Development that can sustainably guarantee our socio-cultural and economic equilibrium. Yes, bits of our systems may need absolute overhaul. Bits and others may need to be imported. But the critical mass, core phenomenon and philosophy of the African Culture and Traditions are more presently relevant than ever. No other approach to our development can lead us to the Promise Era.
Relative to the above, the following is the policy of Werus for our Health Program. According to the statistics of Ministry of Health, about sixty percent of the populace of Ghana rely on Traditional Practice and Herbalists for healthcare. Based on this, Werus projects to use traditional architecture for its Traditional Health Posts (THP) across the country. We identify traditional medical practitioners and herbalists from the various communities. We send them for training and certification at Research Center for Plant Medicine, Mampong Akwapim. These trained and certified Traditional Health Practitioners come back to man the built Traditional Health Posts. This is how we deliver wholesome and affordable healthcare to the traditional communities. Equally important is the generation and formalization of indigenous economy with healthcare as a major contribution.
Last weekend (14 May 2022) was thus the beginning of Traditional Community Transformation journey. Amidst the vibrating and roaring fontomfrom display, the Chief, Elders and Community of Gomoa Assin Mampong together with the leadership of Werus, led by the Chairman of Board of Trustees, Prof Kofi Asare Opoku, cut the sod for the first prototype of the Traditional Health Post (THP).
If the beaming smiles in the faces, hope in the eyes and enthusiasm of the traditional leadership and people of Gomoa Assin Mampong are a good measure, then we can only move forwarding great confidence.
We at We R Us , our kind and cherished donors and supporters are on a focused roll. The heavy showers before and the warm sunshine during the foundation laying ceremony assured us that the elements are with us. We appeal to all and sundry to jump on board for a successful, thunderous and transformative journey of real and sustainable sociocultural and economic development for our people. The African Renaissance has taken off. Yen ara ne yen ara! Nkunim woho mayen!
By Yaw Nkunim, C.O.O Werus