Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Mary Bapuuroh Proposes an NGO for Wa

Mary Bapuuroh has informed Hopeful Way Foundation that she wants to set up an NGO in Wa to help prevent addiction to alcohol and to assist recovering alcoholics and drug addicts. While in Accra for the training in addiction and recovery held from 20-24 April, Mary spoke about her dream of establishing a centre in Wa. In January, 2009 Mary was informed that funding was no longer available for her position with the addictive diseases unit at Wa General Hospital. Since leaving the hospital, Mary continues to meet with some of her more than 20 patients who had been coming to the unit. With the help of an anonymous donor, she bought 12 chairs for counseling sessions and AA meetings being held under a tree.

Because addiction to alcohol is a big and growing problem in Upper West Region, the Wa General Hospital sent Mary for on the job training in Accra in 2007. After spending six months at the Addictive Diseases Unit at Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, she returned and opened a similar unit in Wa in October, 2007.

In the Daily Graphic of 26 May, 2009 an article by Folley Quaye and Chris Nunoo revealed that “only six doctors are manning all the health facilities in nine districts and the Wa Regional Hospital”. The Regional Hospital should have 12 medical doctors but currently has only one with the medical director, Dr. K. Abebrese, doubling as a general medical practitioner, added the Graphic article. The Upper West Regional Director of Health Services, Dr. Alexis Nang-Beifubah, was also interviewed and spoke about the “excessive alcohol intake among people in the region” and two foreign researchers who were currently studying the situation. He added that the excessive use of alcohol was both a social and medical issue, which required a thorough examination.

Mary appeals to any individuals or organisations that may be able to assist in realizing her dream of eliminating the suffering caused by addiction to alcohol and drugs in Wa.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Bill Moore Memorial Service on 29 May, 2009

For more information on the above service, please go to the website below.

Bill M. Memorial Site

Bill helped us carry the AA message in Ghana for ten days in November, 2007.

NA Meeting in Ghana

Revival has been given to Narcotics Anonymous in Ghana . This came about after several attempts by Ghanaians and international friends such as Maurice G. and others to plant NA in the country. The first NA grup in Ghana met on Saturdays and was called the Crucial NA Group. Another NA group met for about six months at a church in Adabraka and was started by Yusuf I. and others.

The new attempt to is expected to be a permanent one and was encouraged by Logosu A., the current Head of the Addictive Diseases Unit of the Department of Medicine of the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital. The idea was enthusiastically accepted by seven recovering addicts who have come to the Unit for treatment and counseling. The recovering addicts admitted that what makes some of them go back to using (relapse) is the lack of maintenance programme.

The first meeting was held under a blackberry tree close to the clinic on Monday, 4 May, 2009. It was an open meeting and was attended by the nurses and a security man who incidentally was an addict. Though it was a topic discussion meeting, the group booklet was read and the content of the text was explained to newcomers. Both old and new members shared their experiences, strengths and hopes.

At the end of the meeting, members were grateful for the initiative by Logosu A. for the formation of the local group. Though Logosu A. proposed the name “Crucial Group”, the group finally settled on “The New Man” as the name of the “home group” after it was proposed by a newcomer, Isaac A who did not know the history of the clinic. The name miraculously coincided with the founder of the Addictive Diseases Unit, Dr. Isaac Newman, a physician specialist who was sponsored to study about addiction and substance dependency disorders in February, 1991.

International NA members visiting Ghana and addicts with the desire to stop using can now have a sigh of relief as they can have a place to fellowship by attending the Monday morning meetings at the Addictive Diseases Unit at Korle Bu Teaching Hospital, Accra . We are expecting Maurice G. and his group to visit Accra in June, 2009.

Submitted by
Chris D.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Workshop on Wellness Policies and EAPs

Hopeful Way Foundation is looking into the possibility of conducting a workshop on Employee Assistance Programmes (EAPs) or more broadly on wellness policies and employee assistance. The workshop will be conducted if it is determined that several organisations will be interested in sending participants and paying for some of the costs of the training. One or two resource persons from outside Ghana would be brought for the training which could take place in August or September, 2009. EAPs are designed to meet the needs of the particular organisation concerned. They can be very simple or complex. Some programmes deal primarily with workplace problems related to alcohol.

The National Council on Alcohol and Drug Dependence in the U.S. defines alcoholism this way:

"Alcoholism is a primary, chronic disease with genetic, psychological, and environmental factors influencing its development and manifestations. The disease is often progressive and fatal. It is characterized by impaired control over drinking, preoccupation with the drug alcohol, use of alcohol despite adverse consequences, and distortion in thinking, most notably denial."

Alcohol is the single most used and abused drug in America. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), nearly 14 million Americans (1 in every 13 adults) abuse alcohol or are alcoholics. Several million more adults engage in risky drinking patterns that could lead to alcohol problems. The costs to society in terms of lost productivity, health care costs, traffic accidents, and personal tragedies are staggering. Numerous studies and reports have been issued on the workplace costs of alcoholism and alcohol abuse, and they report costs that range from $33 billion to $68 billion per year. Alcohol is a major factor in injuries, both at home, at work, and on the road. Nearly half of all traffic fatalities involve alcohol.

In the workplace, the costs of alcoholism and alcohol abuse manifest themselves in many different ways. Absenteeism is estimated to be 4 to 8 times greater among alcoholics and alcohol abusers. Other family members of alcoholics also have greater rates of absenteeism. Accidents and on-the-job injuries are far more prevalent among alcoholics and alcohol abusers.
Employee Assistance Programmes (EAPs) in the U.S. deal with all kinds of problems and provide short-term counseling, assessment, and referral of employees with alcohol and drug abuse problems, emotional and mental health problems, marital and family problems, financial problems, dependent care concerns, and other personal problems that can affect the employee’s work. This service is confidential. These programs are usually staffed by professional counselors and may be operated in-house with agency personnel, under a contract with other agencies or EAP providers, or a combination of the two.

The EAP counselor will meet with the employee, assess or diagnose the problem, and, if necessary, refer the employee to a treatment program or resource. With permission of the client, the EAP counselor will keep the client informed as to the nature of the problem, what type of treatment may be needed, and the progress of the employee in treatment. Before releasing this information to the client, or anyone else, the counselor would need a signed written release of information from the client which would state what information may be released and to whom it may be released. The EAP counselor will also monitor the employee’s progress and will provide follow-up counseling if needed.

Sometimes, the employee will contact the EAP on his or her own. However, in some cases, the employee will be referred by you because you have noted a decline in the employee’s conduct, attendance, or performance and/or seen actual evidence of alcohol use or impairment at work.
If you or your organisation are interested in attending a workshop on EAPs, please contact Hopeful Way Foundation.

If you or your organisation is interested in participating in a workshop on EAPs, please contact Hopeful Way Foundation at 024-355-8412 or E-mail:

Sunday, May 10, 2009


Chia C. of Cameroon had his story told in the May, 2009 issue of the AA Grapevine. Parts of it sounded like life in Ghana. He began by saying that his drinking started off as an acceptable way of spending time with friends but it soon “made my life topsy-turvy”. He got involved with fights, money problems and the wrong women in his “long journey into the abyss of alcoholism”.

He went on to say that “One of the most disturbing things about alcoholism in Afria is that most communities do not even consider it a serious social problem. So many are trapped in its asphyxiating grip, and whole lives are lost forever or simply swept down the drain into oblivion without many people seriously questioning why. The ‘drunkard’ is simply considered a societal clown if he drinks and remains ridiculously friendly, or someone to avoid if he becomes agitated or violent after consuming more than his brain can reasonably handle.”

Chia went on to describe how he took up a responsibility at the funeral of his brother’s wife. He received money from the family to pay the morticians and others, and took a drink “to steady my strained nerves and that was when all hell broke lose. I spent the night on a bench in a market stall, and stayed away from the ceremony. I continued drinking heavily days after the funeral and finally left my village to go back to my station. I had become a nuisance not only to my family but also to the entire village.”

In his post-booze despair, Chia turned to the only anonymous source he knew, the website of Alcoholics Anonymous (, and sent out his first SOS signal. “Therein started my fellowship with online members of Alcoholics Anonymous. The literature and e-mails I constantly receive from the members of this group are the reason I have not tasted a drop of alcohol in the past eight months. The benefits of sobriety are innumerable.”

Summary of the "Out of Afria" story in the May, 2009 Grapevine

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Bill Moore Dies in Accident

Dear Friends of Bill Moore,

The article below appeared in the Santa Rosa, California Press Democrat newspaper on May 3, 2009. Bill and Suzanne Moore visited Ghana in November, 2007 for about ten days and contributed much to the effort to further recovery from alcoholism and drug addiction. Bill was not only an expert in addiction but full of the life of recovery which inspired many of us in Ghana.

Wallace B. Moore Jr., a 68-year-old Santa Rosa man, was killed Friday, May 1, 2009, in a motorcycle crash on a Nevada state highway east of the Sierra Nevada .
Moore, who went by the first name Bill, was riding with a group of motorcyclists belonging to the Gold Wing Road Riders Association bound for Death Valley , said his wife, Suzanne Moore.
Nevada state trooper Chuck Allen said the motorcyclists were on State Route 338 about 20 miles south of Smith, Nev. , when Moore failed to negotiate a curve at about 11:25 a.m.
He hit a rock and a metal sign and was pronounced dead at the scene. The highway connects Smith to Bridgeport , in Alpine County.
Moore was riding a 1994 blue-colored Honda Gold Wing motorcycle, Allen said.
A Santa Rosa resident since 1988, Moore was a self-employed addictions counselor who was dedicated to assisting alcoholics, his wife said.
"That was the driving force in his life," Suzanne Moore said.
The couple had been married 14 years and had traveled widely, visiting Japan, China, Thailand, Australia, Turkey, Greece, Egypt, Ghana, Peru and the Galapagos islands. "He had friends around the world," his wife said.
Moore owned a business named Aery, the term for an eagle's nest, that provided structured living for recovering alcoholics. He was a 33-year member of a 12-step program, his wife said.

A friend of Bill Moore wrote:

"Many times i hated hearing what Bill was trying to show/teach me, but in the end he was right. he was right cause it didn't come from his ego or was trying to show off.....he was right because he was coming from love. was doing it out of love. love for the alcoholic that still suffers. the ones that have reached "the moment of surrender" . the ones willing to go to any lengths. the ones in action. so we to can continue to help others and give what was so freely given to us as it was given to him. Bill Moore was the man that showed me how to love myself so i could love others. life will go on without him. because of him my life and the lives of countless people he helped out of the alcoholic will go on happy joyious and free."

Bill & Suzanne in Ghana

Bill and Suzanne Moore visited Ghana in November, 2007 for about ten days in order to share their messages of recovery with us. Their visit was an inspiration to hundreds of professionals and others in Ghana who are trying to find ways of overcoming addiction to alcohol and drugs. Bill brought a wealth of experience to Ghana in overcoming addiction but his love and enthusiasm for life in recovery impressed us most. Recovering alcoholics and their families were given a new hope. We received the message that there is not only hope but also dignity aplenty in recovery. While in Ghana Bill conducted numerous workshops, went on radio, attended 12-step meetings and carried the message of recovery to Wa. Bill was particularly helpful in developing our thinking on the establishment of a house for recovering alcoholics. Construction of the “Hopeful Way House” in Accra has been completed and is ready to take in up to twelve residents. Bill inspired us with his description of The Aery, a recovery house which he ran in Santa Rosa. Bill and Suzanne will be long remembered for their brief but inspirational visit to Ghana.

Submitted by
Dan O’Laughlin