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Hearts Wide Open: A Bastion Of Hope For Those In Need With Nana Aba Anamoah

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The late US President, John F. Kennedy, once said, “Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country.” This very line is what moved Nana Aba Anamoah, one of the most prominent journalists in all of Ghana, to start the Hearts Wide Open non-profit organization, where she establishes a support system for those in desperate need of help in Ghana—be that from jobs to school fees to the health sector to supporting the LGBTQ community, and more. In this episode, she joins Corinna Bellizzi to talk about this important work in her life, what they are doing to change lives, and how Nana is using stories to connect others to the organization. Don’t miss out on this inspiring conversation as you keep your hearts wide open!

About Nana Aba Anamoah:

Nana Aba Anamoah is one of the most prominent journalists in Ghana. She is the radio and TV personality of the year, winning for the second time in three years. Her other awards include TV News Reporter of the Year, Current Affairs Presenter of the Year, Ghanaian Woman of the Year, and Social Media Personality of the Year. Nana Aba has become the leading voice on many issues on social media in Ghana, with a staggering following of over 3 million followers on Instagram alone. Nana Aba is currently the General Manager of GH One TV and Star 103.5 FM. On January 26, 2022, she launched her not-for-profit, Heart’s Wide Open.


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Show Notes:

01:18 Introduction

06:08 Nana Aba’s Health Issues

16:25 Effect Of COVID

19:56 Reality About Doctors

36:45 Benefits Of Social Media

38:33 The World Has Changed

40:56 Summary

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Hearts Wide Open: A Bastion Of Hope For Those In Need With Nana Aba Anamoah

In June of 2021, I had the opportunity to connect with Nana Aba Anamoah and interview her about her important work. She’s one of the most prominent journalists in all of Ghana. She is the Radio and TV Personality of the Year, an award that she has won 2 times in 3 years. Her other awards include TV News Reporter of the Year, Current Affairs Presenter of the Year, and Ghanaian Woman of the Year. She’s a social media personality with over three million followers on Instagram alone. She is also the General Manager of GHOne TV and Starr 103.5 FM. She’s joining me to tell us more about her journey as she has founded a new not-for-profit called Hearts Wide Open. Nana Aba, welcome to the show.

Thank you, Corinna.

It’s so good to have you here.

It’s great to be here.

I would love to learn from you about what you have done so far with Hearts Wide Open. What is on the road ahead? Where are you headed with this new not-for-profit?

I have been tossing with Hearts Wide Open in my head for a long time. In 2021, I decided that it was time because I had been postponing it even though I had been doing a lot of charity work. Towards the end of 2021, I decided that I had to structure it properly and get more people in so that I’m more responsible and accountable. I registered Hearts Wide Open as a nonprofit in Ghana. Exactly the week after I registered it, I posted on social media that I had finally registered my NGO called Hearts Wide Open. I received a slew of messages request. Everybody wants this and that.

The one that touched my heart the most and I followed through was a request from the biggest prison in Ghana. It’s called the Nsawam Prison. The female section sent me a list of items that they needed. They needed sanitary pads that they didn’t have. They needed a receptacle to store water in, rice, sugar, beans, underwear, and medical supplies. It was a tall list. I looked at the list and I’m thinking, “For all the things that I have received, this one from the prison touched my heart the most because I haven’t paid attention to the prisons.”

I know they do have challenges but it’s not on the top of my list. I decided to pay attention to it this time. For Christmas, I sat down with my team and said this to them. A lot of people come into my DMs and say, “We want to help but we don’t have the money. We want to help but we don’t know who to help.” For this particular one, it says, “It is Christmas. I want us to go to Ghanaians and ask them to donate, so we get these items for the prison.” I put out a one-minute video. Within days, people had contributed $1, $2, or a few dollars. Other people were calling, “I want to donate bags of rice and sugar.”

We finally went to Nsawam Prison thanks to Ghanaians who donated to the prisons. We had an encounter with some of the female inmates. It’s because of Coronavirus that we didn’t meet all of them. We met about ten of them who shared the challenges and experiences of the person. It was heartbreaking and also inspiring because, despite the number of years they had been incarcerated, they were positive about life. They were looking forward. Some have been there for fifteen years. They have another twelve years to go but they are looking forward to it.

It’s nice to know that people pay attention to the needs of others and try to make life better for them.

I live in my home. I have all the freedom. Sometimes I don’t even look forward to the next day but these people are looking forward to twelve years. They know that the twelve years will come and they will come out. Some of them want to see their children. There was a woman who had been there for some time. She left her two kids and the kids were maltreated by the caretaker. These kids ran to the prison and said, “We have nowhere to go. We haven’t even eaten the whole day.” These stories were heartbreaking for me but I was glad that Ghanaians contributed. We were able to send these items to the prison. That’s what we did in December 2021.

On Wednesday, January 26th, 2022, we are officially launching the Hearts Wide Open because I want to help. There are so many young people in Ghana who are brilliant. They want to go to the university, do their Master’s program abroad, and go to the USA, the UK, Australia, and Canada but they don’t have the means to go. I have been able to speak to a few organizations in Ghana, especially the Scholarship Secretariat. They are willing to give us a number of scholarships for students who are brilliant but find it difficult to fund the education. I have also been able to get in touch with a couple of institutions in the US that are willing to bring in people who have serious medical problems or need surgery.

For instance, there was a young girl who had a brain tumor. We couldn’t do the surgery in Ghana well. We attempted the surgery in Ghana. It didn’t go well. She ended up going blind in one eye. We had to find a way to get her out of Ghana. She’s in the US undergoing surgery to take the tumor out. These are the things that the foundation will be doing like trying to get jobs for young people. I met a graduate of Second-Class Law, a brilliant student. This student had nothing to do, so he was working at a washing bay washing cars. He thought he could do more with his life than washing cars. That’s what the organization will be doing. I’m happy that we are launching.

I love your connection to the stories that you are telling, these individuals that you are able to help. I wanted to bring up one that stood out to me that preceded Hearts Wide Open being officially founded. That was the Siamese twins who were connected at the head. Talk to us about what you did in social media and the way you used your voice to draw people to that particular story. This is how you are using your voice. It’s also how you will be using Hearts Wide Open to affect people positively.

This woman in a village in Ghana in a poor neighborhood gave birth. The boys were conjoined at the skull. It was the first time we have seen anything like that in Ghana. It’s the second time we have seen Siamese twins but the first time they were conjoined at the head. They couldn’t afford the surgery. They come from a poor family. These people live in a single room. The room has no bathroom or kitchen. They have to cook outside and take their bath outside. They can’t do it inside. It’s a sad story.

For this woman to give birth to Siamese twins required so much money. I’m talking about more than $1 million to separate them. It was difficult. It came to my attention and I thought, “I will see what I can do to rally Ghanaians home and abroad to donate, so we can separate these twins.” We put it out and in three days, we had raised over $650,000. On the fourth day, the president is so kind and he said, “Stop the appeal for funds and crowdfunding. I’m going to take up the entire cost of the surgery.”

The president did that thankfully. The surgery to separate the two has started. I spoke to one of the brain surgeons and he said it was going so well. They are confident that the twins will be separated. That was the highlight of my 2021. I don’t think anything else will beat that for me. It’s the trust people had in me to donate and the belief that no matter how much they were contributing, it was for a ready cause to help this woman. Apart from the money people donated, there’s a gentleman called Freedom.

Freedom decided that he was moving them from the home in that deprived neighborhood to one of the plush neighborhoods in Accra. You need a lot of money to live in that neighborhood. He gave them a four-bedroom house fitted with a kitchen, bathrooms, and a big living room. They are living there now. Their lives have changed. They have a car to themselves now, thanks to this gentleman. It makes me happy that people pay attention to the needs of others and try to make life better for them.

CMBB 70 | Hearts Wide Open
Hearts Wide Open: We have doctors going on strike because they feel they’re too exposed. They don’t have the resources to work with.

In this instance, in particular, you are talking about them essentially living in a one-bedroom hut. How would the children even recover from the types of surgeries that they are going to have to go through without running water? I love everything you are doing with Hearts Wide Open. I know a part of the vision because even when I interviewed you in June 2021, we talked a little bit about your work in the LGBTQ community.

We also talked about the fact that there was this need for medical aid, specifically in Ghana. A lot of the medical systems aren’t as strong as they need to be. You have already touched on a couple of the issues like this complicated surgery to separate conjoined twins or a brain tumor that could result in blindness. How do you see Hearts Wide Open supporting that overarching mission?

What I plan to do with Hearts Wide Open is to launch a massive campaign to restock our major hospitals. It breaks my heart every time I have to talk about the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, for instance. That is a premier hospital and the biggest hospital in Ghana. One of my friends lost her son in 2021 to a brain tumor. The surgery was done successfully. They moved this boy from the operating table to a different ward. They couldn’t keep him in that operating room or ward close to the operating room because there were a just few beds. There are so many people in line to have their surgeries done.

Once your surgery is done, there isn’t too much time to be spent on you. You have to be moved for the next person to come in. He was moved to a different ward and he had a seizure. I don’t know what happened. This hospital didn’t even have something as basic as a defibrillator. I have traveled to so many countries in the world. Defibrillators are basic. You can find them sometimes in phone booths. You find ambulances have defibrillators. If you come to Ghana, sadly we don’t have that.

People are dying not because our doctors cannot save them but because our brilliant doctors do not have the resources to work with them. The doctors get frustrated. There are a few brain surgeons who have left the USA to come to Ghana because they think that they have to work in Ghana to save lives in Ghana. They are in Ghana and don’t have the equipment to work with. They get frustrated all the time. Some give up and go back to the USA, Canada or wherever they trained. It breaks my heart.

One of the things that I want to do in 2022 is to launch a massive campaign to solicit help from everywhere in the world for people to help us out and get us defibrillators and beds. We have a no-bed syndrome in Ghana. In 2022, you could have the most severe challenge in the middle of the night. You would be fortunate to get an ambulance to attend to you. The ambulance will take you to the hospital. You get to the hospital and there is no bed. You get to these major hospitals and people are sleeping on the floor.

There was so much corruption sometimes that for beds to be available, you have to pay extra credits. That’s the currency here in Ghana. You have to pay money to get a bed for a dying human being. How was that happening in Ghana? Ghana is not a poor country. We are not a poor country. We have so many resources. We have gold and cocoa. We are the biggest exporter of cocoa in the world. We have gold, bauxite, diamonds, timber, and all the natural resources but people are dying needlessly.

There was a news item of a woman in labor during the day. It was daytime. It wasn’t even at night. There was no clinic in her neighborhood. They had to put her on a truck. I’m not talking about a proper truck on the roads. It’s like a wheelbarrow. They had to put her in a wheelbarrow to carry her to the nearest community, which was miles away, to go and deliver. The woman died on her way to the hospital. That’s a needless death. It baffles me that this is happening to people in my country.

A lot of the people in my circle always pray against falling sick in Ghana because you always say to yourself, “If I fall sick and go to the hospital, I’m going to die not because my case is so serious but because of the lack of amenities and basic things to attend to me.” We have the best doctors and nurses in Ghana but unfortunately, we don’t have the resources to go with them. That is one of the things that I want to do in 2022 with Hearts Wide Open.

If you truly believe in the principles and the tenants of the Bible, you should be the one speaking for those who can’t speak.

I’m inspired by the late President of the USA, JFK, who said, “Ask not what your country can do for you. You should also ask what you can do for your country.” I don’t think that only stops with the government. The people must also try and use the little that they have to turn things around. You never know when it will be your family member or even you in that situation. That’s one of the major things I want to do in 2022 with Hearts Wide Open.

I have two questions that relate to the story you have shared. One relates to COVID. I wonder if part of the lack of beds is because of the COVID pandemic and how that’s even going there.

No. We have had the no-bed syndrome in Ghana for years. We don’t have enough beds. It’s not just beds. It’s also incubators. One of my colleagues with another media house, Kwame Sefa Kayi, launched a campaign to buy about 12 or 20 incubators for different hospitals. Babies were dying because we didn’t have incubators. How? This was as recent as 2020 and 2019. We don’t have incubators. It is not just COVID. COVID came with its own challenges. We have been so fortunate in Ghana that the reports that we saw in the USA, Italy, and England with Coronavirus, we didn’t experience a quarter of it.

Fortunately, our cases are so low. If you look at the number of people who have died from COVID in Ghana, it’s so low. The infection rate is low. We have been lucky. If we hadn’t been lucky, our medical facilities would have given up on all of us because we don’t have the resources and facilities to go with it. The few people who got Coronavirus were lucky. Even in some instances, we didn’t have oxygen. People had to be paying for oxygen. You have to bribe people to get oxygen. Fortunately, this government has been resourceful with Coronavirus.

They have handled it well and better than a lot of us thought they would. There are still criticisms here and there but they have handled it properly. The lack of beds is not because of Coronavirus. It has been with us for a long time. You go to hospitals and women deliver. When they deliver, they should be kept at the ward for a couple of days or a few hours. We have a system that is in a hurry to rush them out because there are more women coming in to deliver. Why is that happening in my beautiful country with all our resources? It doesn’t make any sense to me.

The second question I have relates to the fact that you are missing some of these key components. When you say an incubator, we are not even talking about some of the things that are used to treat COVID that are suddenly in great demand that you might have more difficulty sourcing. We are talking about something as simple as something to keep your baby warm when they have been born. That’s simple but there’s also another problem that Ghana faces.

That’s what we have called the brain drain where some of those skilled surgeons will leave the country out of frustration. The doctors and medical professionals that keep you healthy are like, “I want to be here and support this family but I can’t take this anymore. I’m going to go work in the United States where I have access to the tools that I need to be able to save lives,” which you can’t fault them for. I wonder if you could comment on that and tell us a little bit more about where we are in that phase.

It’s so sad when you hear these doctors. I’m telling you for a fact that we have some of the best doctors in the world. Some of the best doctors and nurses in the world are Ghanaians. There is such a brain drain. They leave the country in droves because they are so frustrated. We have doctors going on strike because they feel they are too exposed. They don’t have the resources to work with. They are contracting diseases on the job because things as basic and simple as gloves are sometimes not available. You get injured on the job and nobody cares about you.

CMBB 70 | Hearts Wide Open
Hearts Wide Open: If you don’t have the money, you’re not going to get quality healthcare. And that is sad. And that is why a lot of doctors are leaving.

Things have improved in the health sector but they could get better. It’s the number of times doctors have complained because they don’t have basic things to work with. They complain so much but nothing happens. Number one, either they are leaving the government hospitals. We have more government hospitals than private hospitals because government hospitals are cheaper. Remember that majority of Ghanaians are poor. We have a lot of people living on less than $1 a day. These people go to the state-owned hospitals because it is cheaper to go there.

The doctors are willing to help but they don’t have the resources to work with. People are going home without any proper healthcare. We introduced the National Health Insurance Scheme or NHIS and it hardly works. Hospitals are giving up because they feel that the government is indebted to them. The government is not paying. If you bring your health insurance, they will not take it. You have to pay it in cash and carry. If you don’t have the money, you are not going to get quality healthcare. That is sad. That is why a lot of doctors are leaving.

Doctors are losing patients not because they are inefficient. We are losing patients because they don’t have the resources to work with, “Why would I stay here? I recall too many deaths on my table.” They will leave and go to America. It breaks their hearts but if they go, their families are better off. They are better off being paid well. If you hear what Kenyan doctors are paid, you would be sad. They are not paid well. The little things they need to work with too are not available. You don’t expect them to stay.

I don’t fault any Ghanaian nurse, lab technician or doctor who decides that they are leaving Ghana. People try to play the patriotic card a lot, “You’ve got to be patriotic and love your country.” You love your country and that is why you must leave. When you stay in your country with all of these problems, you end up killing more people. You are better off being somewhere where your work is appreciated, the resources are available, and you can earn your keep and save lives properly.

Perhaps too, use your voice to raise funds for something like Hearts Wide Open that is seeking to solve the problem. That’s so critically important for us to think about in the West. A lot of things are broken in the healthcare system in the United States. It’s not perfect but most people can go and get the care that they need if they go to the hospital. They are going to get the basics that you have heard covered.

I will tell you something that happened. A man called the ambulance service because his wife had gone into labor. The ambulance driver arrives with the team of health professionals on the ambulance. They leave his home, and then five minutes into the journey, they run out of fuel. They tell this man whose wife is dying, “Give us $75 to refuel or we can’t continue with this journey.” The man didn’t have a dime on him. His wife died.

At that point, you are getting in the ambulance. You are on the way. You left your wallet.

His wife died because the ambulance had no fuel. Where in this world does that happen? This is Ghana. We have oil. We export oil, maybe not in large quantities like other countries like Nigeria. How is somebody dying because there was no fuel in an ambulance? It makes no sense. When people get angry, you have to leave them to rant because the system frustrates them. I know that it breaks the hearts of the leaders as well but the system is so complicated. We have many arguments over it. I said to them, “I will come back to my last point that the head of the ambulance service had no idea that there was an ambulance without petrol.”

It’s because there was so much corruption in the system that someone somewhere decided, “Let’s use the ambulance for something else.” There was a time when an ambulance will be in traffic sounding all the sirens. You think they are carrying a patient. One time, it turned out that it wasn’t a patient. They were carrying cement blocks. Someone had a contract to go and deliver some cement blocks to a contractor working somewhere. They get paid privately. This is an ambulance. There are people dying in other areas looking for an ambulance to transport them to the hospital.

It is not a crime to be different.

There was so much corruption. Corruption is not just at the top. People like to blame the leadership but it’s not just there. It is in the middle and the bottom. We are so corrupt. There’s corruption everywhere in the world but the systems that make corruption expensive for people to practice are so weak in Ghana. People take advantage of that. That is why an ambulance driver will show up and say, “I don’t have fuel. If you don’t give me $75, I’m not going to take your wife to the hospital.” How is that happening in Ghana? It makes no sense.

It reminds me of another story that you shared in June 2021, which we appropriately published in Pride Month here. For the LGBTQ community, it’s essentially illegal to be gay in Ghana. Kids will get beat up that are suspected of being gay or that are gay. It doesn’t matter. They will get beat up for it, come to the hospital, and be turned away because they don’t operate.

It makes no sense. I keep telling Ghanaians that the LGBTQ community in Ghana is not even talking about legalizing the act. They are not talking about legalization. They haven’t even made the attempt to talk about legalization. They are talking about their right to healthcare and education. You go to a community and there is a mission hospital. The hospital is owned by one church. The church says, “LGBTQ is non-Christian or non-Muslim,” even though I haven’t had the Muslim community do that. Mostly, it’s with Christian communities.

You turn up a man. You are not well. You have malaria and come to the hospital to seek healthcare. Somebody points out, “This guy is gay. The last time, I saw him in a corner with a guy. They were kissing.” That’s it. You are not going to be attended to. You would have to go home with your sickness and treat yourself. If you are not lucky, you may die. It happens outside the hospital and in the community itself. Somebody points you out, “That guy is gay. That lady is a lesbian. That guy is a trans.” That is the end of you. You will be beaten to a pulp and lynched.

I don’t know how that happens in a civilized community like Ghana. I tell people, “Politicians are using you.” They have drafted a law. In essence, it’s called the Anti-Gay Bill. It’s in the Parliament and Parliamentarians are going to debate and pass it. I tell my friends, “I don’t think that people understand the LGBTQ community. They are human beings.” It’s the same country that claims to be a Christian. The Bible says, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” If we are going by what the Bible says, why are you hating another human being because they have decided they don’t want to be like you? Why is it your business?

They have made it all about sex. That is what annoys me the most. I said to people, “Why are you concerned about what two adults are doing in their bedroom?” Let’s assume that it’s all about sex. Why does it bother you? If two consenting adults or two men decide that in their bedroom and privacy this is what they want to do, why is it your business? Why are you so concerned about it? Why are you not worried that a fellow human being is not getting access to healthcare or education because they are different from you?

If you truly believe in the principles and the tenets of the Bible, you should be the one speaking for them. Even Jesus said that he didn’t come for the holy wars. If you claim that being gay is a sin, let’s assume without admitting that it’s true. Let’s say that it is a sin. Even Jesus said he came for sinners. If you are a Christian and you believe in the Bible, you should be speaking for these people, showing them love, and bringing them closer to you. Why are you driving them away? I feel there’s so much hypocrisy. The bottom line is it is what it is. It is hypocrisy. People are hypocritical.

Politicians are using LGBTQ to hide their inefficiencies. They make promises. They are not delivering on these promises. They are MPs. They are not delivering in their communities. They are hiding behind the LGBTQ. They are going to attack me. I don’t care because I believe that gays, lesbians, transgender, and queer people must live freely in Ghana. They have a right to live, go to any entertainment center in Ghana, go to any hospital of their choice, associate with any group of their choice, and access education in this country. If we fail to do that for these people, then we are not worth the peaceful country that we claim we are.

Nana Aba in a short sleeved gold dress walking towards the camera.
Hearts Wide Open: You can’t be the most peaceful country in Africa if you single out certain people because they are different from you and subject them to abuse.

We always say, “We are the beacon of Africa and democracy. We are the most peaceful country in Africa.” You can’t be the most peaceful country in Africa if you target people, single out certain people because they are different from you, and subject them to abuse. You cannot be the most peaceful country in Africa if you are doing that. That is my anger with a lot of Ghanaians who have bought into this anti-LGBTQ campaign. They don’t know and understand what they are doing. It’s like, “Let’s go with it. This is what the people want to hear. People don’t like lesbians and gays.” They will come along.

They are hiding behind it and being so inefficient. We have bad roads. Our roads are getting bad. Fortunately, more roads are being built and constructed. Our healthcare situation is getting bad. We have issues with education. Nobody even pays attention to climate change in Ghana. We don’t even understand the repercussions of climate change in Ghana.

We are so fixated with the few people in Ghana who are LGBTQ community members. I don’t understand where that fixation comes from. When I talk about it, I get so angry because I don’t understand how a human being can wake up in the morning and hate another because they don’t want to be like them.

I say to people that I’m a conservative person but I have respect for people. That is the bottom line. You must respect people. I’m a Catholic. There are certain things that my Catholic church will say, “This is so un-Catholic,” but I have common sense. I’m a Catholic to the core but I also have common sense that if a woman decides today that, “I am pregnant and I don’t want to keep the baby. I want to abort the baby.” It’s not your decision to tell the person that, “You are sinning.” It is their choice to make. I’m not going to say because I’m a Catholic, “Don’t abort that child. If you abort that child, you are a murderer.” I’m a Catholic but I have common sense. I respect people.

I’m a Christian. I’m not going to shy away from my Christian principles. I’m Christian forever and ever but I will not also say that because my priest or pastor has said that LGBTQ people are evil, I am going to hate them. That would mean that all the money my father has spent on my education has gone to waste because I didn’t learn common sense. That is what it is. It is called common sense and respect for the other person. Respect people’s political views. Have some respect for people and live with them freely in a community. It breaks my heart every single time. The more I talk about it, the angrier I get.

It makes me very angry too when you first told me that people were calling you a lesbian to try and get that riled up against you and things like that.

I’m not a lesbian.

The government or the people in power are using it against you.

It’s not the people in power. It’s their sympathizers and followers. They come up to you with all sorts. If you call me a lesbian, it doesn’t take anything away from me.

Our problem is not the LGBTQ community in Ghana. Our problem is the leaders of the country who have refused to be accountable to the people.

It shouldn’t. It’s just a sexual preference.

I know lesbians who are doing better and more intelligent than I am. I know lesbians who have chartered paths and they are so successful. I respect these lesbians. I know gays who are doing so well. I have so much respect for these gays. I am not going to hate somebody. I can’t even hate you if you kill a fellow human being. I don’t even have it in me to hate anybody. If I can’t hate a murderer, why am I going to hate someone who’s gay or a lesbian? What crime have they committed? It is not a crime to be different for me. I don’t hate them. It’s so sad that people are deliberately using it so much.

What is shocking is that not every Ghanaian is buying into it. The new generation and the young people between 18 and 28 are so exposed and aware. They are woke. They are aware that you cannot throw these things at them. They will tell you that it is not the most important thing. It’s the generation before this particular one that is buying to all of it. The young generation doesn’t care. You called him or her lesbian. You claim they are lesbians or gay, “We want to make our lives better, so fix the country for us.”

This is one of the benefits of social media because they are seeing how it is in other countries and around the globe. These issues become lesser issues to this younger generation that is spending time on TikTok or whatever their social applications are. That’s one of the positive things about social media. The thing that irritates me is that there are people who are deliberately using something that they know and flames a particular set of people to try and somehow make your voice less impactful. I love that you are willing to stand up against all of that, speak your truth, and be a bastion of hope for those people because we 100% need more voices like yours. With Hearts Wide Open, you have big dreams. It’s solving medical systems and also supporting the LGBTQ community.

It’s a big job but I will try as much as I can. I will meet resistance here and there but I have been through this so many times. I have been doing this for many years that I don’t think anything at all can stop me. This is what I have decided to do. I don’t stop until I get results. This is exactly what I will be doing. I’m going to look forward to the results. That’s the most important thing to me.

As we have talked about a lot, what is the thought that you would like to leave our audience with if there’s a question I didn’t ask that you wish I had or some gem that you want to leave them with?

If there is any Ghanaian reading this, I want them to understand that the world has changed. The world is changing and it’s going to keep changing. Our problem is not the LGBTQ community in Ghana. Our problem is the leaders of the country who have refused to be accountable to the people. They failed to fix our healthcare and education, to create an enabling environment for jobs to be created so that when you graduate from the university, you don’t have to sit at home for eight years before you get a job. They get so depressed.

You don’t have to go into entrepreneurship to start your business because there are no jobs. The jobs should be there. Entrepreneurship is not for everybody. There are people who come out of the university. They have ideas and can start on their own. There are some who also created for 8:00 to 5:00 jobs and want to do 8:00 to 5:00 jobs. The system cannot force you to start a business when you are not ready to start a business. That is what the system is creating.

Young people are starting bakeries. They are not ready for it but because there is nothing to do and there’s no money, they have to force themselves to get into this thing. I want Ghanaians to know that the LGBTQ community is not our problem. Our problem is the inefficiency in the system and the lack of leadership from certain areas. It’s not the president. If the president had his way, things will be working well. There are people in certain areas working. The president doesn’t even know what they are doing because there is a lack of accountability. That is what we must be doing.

CMBB 70 | Hearts Wide Open
Hearts Wide Open: Politicians are using LGBTQ to hide their inefficiencies.

For the rest of your audience, I hope that if they have the chance, they will spend an extra dollar helping my dear country to fix some of the health problems in our country. Our governments have done enough. They have done more than enough but we can do more. We, as citizens, can do more. If they have the opportunity to help citizens in this country, I would very much appreciate it. I would be happy if they do it through Hearts Wide Open.

Where can they go to find out more about you and Hearts Wide Open specifically?

Hearts Wide Open has a website. It’s You can reach us there. We are also, @HeartsWideOpen_ on Twitter and Instagram. We are on Facebook as, @HeartsWideOpen, and LinkedIn as well as, @HeartsWideOpen. You can contact me directly @TheNanaAba on Twitter and Instagram. I’m on Facebook, even though I still don’t understand Facebook. I’m quite new to it. I’m on LinkedIn. They can contact me and I will be most grateful.

What I will say about your Instagram is, it’s a pleasure to follow. Not only do you share a lot of great information that would help everybody understand what’s happening in Ghana but you also have such an impeccable wardrobe. I get to see some incredible outfits that bring out the jealousy in me.

Thank you so much, Corinna.

Thank you so much for joining. I appreciate everything you are doing. For everyone reading, NGO means NonGovernmental Organization. It’s the same as dot-org essentially but it’s a newer acronym. People don’t necessarily know it the same way. That means all of your donations are tax-deductible. That’s what that means. Thank you so much. I appreciate you coming on.

It’s time for this simple ask. I would love it if you would share this episode and our website with friends. If you haven’t already, please subscribe to this show, so you are the first to know when we have new episodes. If you go there and sign up for our newsletter, you will receive a notification of all of our new episodes. We will share assets with you and also that incredible five-step tool to unleash your inner activist. Who knows? Perhaps you could form the next Hearts Wide Open, something that’s relevant to you and your community.

It’s through sharing the in-depth conversations like the one that we had with Nana Aba Anamoah that will all be a part of the change that we want to see in the world. Together, we can create the future that we want by inviting other people to care a little bit more, so we can all be better and keep our hearts wide open. Thank you, readers, now and always for being a part of this show and this community because together, we can do so much more. We can Care More and Be Better. We can even regenerate Earth. Thank you.

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  • Nana Aba Anamoah

    General Manager, GHOneTV and Starr 103.5FM in Ghana Nana Aba Anamoah is one of the most prominent journalists in Ghana. She is the Radio and Television Personality of the year; an award she has won for the second time in 3 years. Other awards include TV News reporter of the year, Current Affairs presenter of the year, Ghanaian woman of the year (Media Category), and Social Media Personality of the year. Nana Aba has become the leading voice on many issues on social media in Ghana with a staggering following of over 3 million on instagram alone. Nana Aba is currently General Manager of GHOne TV and Starr 103.5 FM.

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