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ACCRA, GHANA
Chicago’s Sister City Since 1989  

Committee Chair: Robert Acquaye

Sister Cities since 1989, The Accra Committee of Chicago Sister Cities International has been involved in humanitarian, medical, cultural, and education initiatives, as well as promoting trade and business.


The Committee focuses on humanitarian efforts like fundraising for a modern hospital in Ghana; coordinating a relief effort with the United States Embassy in Accra that resulted in immediate shipment of needed medical supplies and children's clothing to Accra; and coordinating and shipping 25,000 donated books and educational materials to Accra for use in a citywide mobile library program.


In 2006, the committee hosted the Tapestry Fashion Show featuring eight renowned Chicago fashion designers. The designers created one-of-a-kind garments with traditional Ghanaian textiles.


From an environmental standpoint, the committee hosted “Chicago Worldview: Impacting the Environment of Ghana.” This panel discussed the practices and long-term benefits Chicago will have on the rural and urban areas of Ghana.

ABOUT ACCRA – Fast Facts

Mayor: Honorable Alfred Vanderpuije
Country:  Ghana
Country Location:  Western Africa  
Geography: Located on Ghana’s Atlantic Ocean coastline.
History:  Historically has been a seat of power, especially for the ancient Ga people. The established position along the southern coast made it an important port center for the early European traders.
Industry:  Mining, lumbering, light manufacturing, aluminum, textiles.
Did You Know?  Accra is famous throughout West Africa for its dance clubs, as well as its beaches and lakes, where sport fishing for barracuda is popular, as are surfing, sailing and water-skiing.  
Flag Description: Red recalling the bloodshed, yellow representing mineral wealth, and green symbolizing forests. The black star is the star of African freedom.


PAST ACCRA – CHICAGO PROGRAMS

2011
Ongoing

Focus: Humanitarian/Education
Books for Africa
The Accra Committee of Chicago Sister Cities International is raising money to ship 22,000 textbooks to children in need and stock libraries with outdated books in Accra, Ghana. Currently, books in some of the libraries in Accra and surrounding towns have copyright dates in the 1960s and ’70s. Additionally, the government has built 50 new schools, and these books will be the used by the students of these schools. The committee is working directly with the Mayor of Accra and the Ministry of Education.

June 30

The Accra Committee of Chicago Sister Cities International Partners celebrated Ghana’s 51st Republic Anniversary with a fundraising reception at Akainyah Gallery.  The proceeds from the event helped to send textbooks to schools in Accra with Books for Africa.


HISTORY OF GHANAIANS IN CHICAGO

When Ghana, the West African nation formerly known as the Gold Coast, achieved its independence in 1957, the number of Ghanaians living in the Chicago area was small. During the following four decades, however, Chicago's Ghanaian community grew to between 10,000 and 15,000 people. The first wave of immigration came in the 1970s; opposition to military coups and other undemocratic regimes led many Ghanaians, especially students, to pursue educational and other opportunities in the United States. Economic hardships in the 1980s continued this trend, and the Ghanaian population in Chicago grew to approximately 5,000–7,000. Since the late 1980s, immigrants have often been family members of original migrants, and a growing portion have been winners in the United States Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery.




 
ACCRA NEWS & EVENTS

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