Ready to play? Twelve days at Asaase: the view from an intern (I)

Asaase hosted a special intern early this month – Angela Kwao, an SHS2 student from Manya Krobo. In the first instalment of a two-part journal, Angela (aged 16) describes how she met Nana Adjoa Hackman … and what happened next that led her to Asaase

So – two days after we were told we were to go home on Easter holidays, a teacher also informed us that we should expect visitors the next day. We were left to prepare ourselves … and the next day, truly, the visitors were in.

The group of five visitors started to describe their own careers and life experiences, motivating and challenging us. They came with a camera crew and support staff from a new organisation called Drive to Inspire – Africa. I learned more about this organisation much later. After the talk, we were also allowed to ask questions.

When it was all over, I went up to the woman leading the group of visitors – a lawyer from Accra – so I could talk to her.

I told the lady about my small skills of giving the news in Twi.

“So can you do something if I set the camera on you?” she asked.

“Yes, I can,” I said.

She asked the team to set the camera on me so I could show them what I could do. So I displayed what I could do, using stories from life at our school. The team seemed pleased and they then said I should summarise for them what they came to do at the school.

When the team saw that I could do what they asked me to do, they actually gave me their phone number. And that is how I got to know Ms Nana Adjoa Hackman.

Off to Accra!

I got in touch with her after the visit and she told me she would organise something for me the next mouth, which was January 2024.

So, on the 1st of January I called her, and it all started from there.

Ms Nana Adjoa talked to my grandpa and the Drive to Inspire team agreed to pick me up on the 1st of February. And so, on that day, a Thursday, that’s exactly what happened.

Thursday 1 February

So on the 1st of February, I woke up early in the morning to do my duties: sweeping, scrubbing the bathhouse and all that. After that, I went to my grandma’s house, which is quite far from our house in Atua – the small town in the Eastern Region where I live with my younger sisters and my two cousins – to help her as I usually do. When I was done with her, I hurried up to get home so that I could cook for my sisters. Normally they go to school and come back to eat during break. We aren’t rich, and eating at home helps us save money.

While I was setting the fire, my grandpa came out of the room and said, “The people you are expecting are on their way, so go and meet them and direct them to the house.”

I moved quickly to meet the visitors and bring them home. Once they got to the house, they met my grandpa. While they were talking to Grandpa, I took a bath, and then the whole show started. The visitors were introduced to everyone in my family. They had a little chat, but then we realised time was not on our side and we had to hit the road.

We took a few pictures, and Ms Gemma Appiah did an interview with Grandpa. The camera crew also shot some video images while Ms Gemma was talking to my grandpa. I felt like a celebrity!

When that was done, finally, the way was open for us to leave and we moved, heading for our school, Manya Krobo SHS.

When we got to the school, we had to seek permission from the headmistress and check with her that everything was okay so we could move. But the headmistress was not happy with my hair. She insisted that I had to shave it before we left. So off we went to look for a barber. Once I had shaved it, she was happier, and we knew we were ready to leave.

As soon as we could after the visit to the barber, we were off to Accra. The trip was amazing: we had a lot of conversation and shared lots of jokes. It made me feel so comfortable; actually, it got to a point where we all fell asleep.

But soon, we woke and found that we were approaching our destination. One of the team said he wanted to buy food, and asked that as soon as we got into town we find a place to eat. When finally we got to the part of Accra where we were to meet our hosts, we were all tired and very hungry. But first I had to meet and greet Ms Nana Adjoa Hackman.

She was very busy at the office but we were allowed to meet her and say hello quickly. When I saw her again, I was lost for words. I suppose I was surprised to see the way she was in her daily work setting.

Drive to Inspire – Africa/Nana Adjoa Hackman welcomes Angela Kwao to Accra
Nana Adjoa Hackman welcomes Angela to Accra

Not to waste much time, we moved quickly to Asaase Radio, where I would be going for my internship. The Drive to Inspire – Africa team had told me that I was to stay with Ms Nana Yaa. We had not met before, so I was impatient to meet her.

While waiting for her, we used the time to go through orientation. And just as we were finishing up, I finally met a cute lady with passion, just like Ms Nana Adjoa Hackman. This was Ms Nana Yaa. She asked me lots of questions and we had a long conversation. Then, around 6pm, we took off from Asaase.

I was so happy when we finally we got to Ms Yaa’s home, a quiet and simple house. I was able to settle in, take a shower, have supper and have a good night’s sleep, ready for the next day.

Friday 2 February

An office car picked me up for work at 7am and we made our way through heavy traffic to the Asaase office. I started work with my mentor, Ms Gemma.

Today was a rollercoaster of a day. I have learned a lot of things all at once: how to write a lead story, how to use the desktop computer at work, how to read the news, and so much more.

So, on Friday, which was the 2nd of February, I was introduced to the members of the newsroom team who I had not yet met. I attended the 8am newsroom editorial meeting, where the team planned the news for the 12 o’clock news and observed the senior news reporter at the studio while she was presenting The 12 O’Clock Report. Then there was another editorial meeting at 1pm.

After that, I went to lunch, and I relaxed for the day.

Saturday 3 February

On Saturday, I had the opportunity to visit the Asaase outside broadcast (or OB, for short) which was happening at Corridor Gardens, a sports bar in East Legon.

It was amazing, a very good atmosphere.

The OB is covering matches from the African Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Abidjan. The whole sports team was there, with a senior technician.

The visit with Ms Nana Yaa gave me a chance to watch how Asaase does live sports news. Princeton Wiredu, Asaase’s sports correspondent, took me through how he prepares sport reports.


Sunday was for rest. I stayed at home, had a chat with Ms Nana Yaa, soaked up the environment, wrote up my notes, took lunch, did my washing, and relaxed.

Part two of Angela Kwao’s journal describing her internship at Asaase will appear shortly on

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