When Leah McCurdy heard that her mother would be visiting the Touch A Life Care Center in Ghana for the second time, she had an idea. As an archaeologist and lecturer at University of Texas at Arlington, Leah is interested in educating and benefitting the communities around archeological places, so her natural inclination was to provide a learning experience for the Touch A Life kids to learn about West African heritage.
Over a year ago, Leah and several other archeologists began the Fajina Archeology Outreach. Leah explained, “Fajina is a modern Maya word that means communal labor. Members of a community give their time for the good of the community to make sure that everyone can benefit from working together.” While their primary work began in Belize near an archaeological site, Leah was happy to expand the program to Ghana.
While at the Care Center, Leah’s mom, Sally, showed a video of Leah and her colleagues explaining the project and the Touch A Life kids were able to work on a coloring and letter writing project. The project included information about traditional West African dolls, fabric, colors, and symbols. The letters that the kids wrote will be delivered to children in Belize to share cultural knowledge. Leah’s video also shared about an archaeological site that is near the Care Center in Kumasi.
The Touch A Life kids can’t wait to hear back from their new friends in Belize and learn all about the culture and heritage in Central America!