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Miss Ghana adopts village 1/30/2007
Irene Akosua Boatenmaa Dwomo has certainly had a ball with her reign as Miss Ghana 2006. There wasn’t any media circus about her prizes and hopefully she will get to represent Ghana at the world pageant without any drama. The show turns 50 in March, obviously tying in nicely into the jubilee funfair and this year’s pageant is supposed to be just grand. Period.

It’s about half past 1.00pm and the Sparrow Productions waiting area is just gone past the hyperactivity that comes with preparing for the show, so it’s almost calm. Irene is supposed to come over for a chat but she’s running a little late. She’s a beauty queen, so maybe that’s allowed. When her tall figure breezes through the door, Irene manages a graceful strut towards her manager and said “hello” rather nicely. Inside the room that was supposed to be the set for her science based TV show, ‘Twinkling Stars’, the beauty queen found a way to relax and talk about the projects and the fun.

“It’s been nice being Miss Ghana but it came with a lot of responsibilities”, she said. “Everything changes and you can’t do the things you are so used to anymore; there’s also a lot of attention and that also makes you conscious of a lot things. But it’s been great. I couldn’t do the TV show because we couldn’t get sponsorship for it. I only got money from the Agric Development Bank to build the set and shoot a pilot. But my other projects aren’t doing badly either. But Miss Ghana has made me a reserved person”

As part of her charity work, Irene is currently sourcing funds for the John Boscoe orphanage in Ashiaman (a suburb of Accra). The other project she got interested in came after overhearing a conversation about how the inhabitants of a small village in Cape Coast live in squalor. A little enquiry about the village ‘Mpuanu’ led her into their small poverty-stricken heartland.

“I was really shocked to see the way they lived. The community is very poor and the only educational facility they have is about the size of a goat shed. It has room for only primary one and two. They children have to walk about 7 miles to another village if they have any hopes of continuing and they certainly find it stressful so after primary two, school is over for them. I’m collaborating with the village folk to put up a three-classroom block so they at least have reason to study again”.

Irene is big on education and for some reason she wants the same for those kids. On March 2nd this year, she will hand over to another lucky girl for a feel of all the pomp and stress the title comes with. She admits she will miss the whole Miss Ghana thing but also appreciates the need to move on. This year’s Miss Ghana drives home a BMW and probably in the back of her mind Irene would have wanted to be the one. But she says she will be making history regardless because she will be the one handing over to that jubilee beauty.


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