“Greetings lovely people! My name is Patience Afi Vodi. My friends say that I am kind-hearted, caring, and an easy-going person. In October of 1977, I was born in Tamale, the capital of the northern region of Ghana, to Mr. Emmanuel Vodi, a retired soldier, and Mrs. Rose Okyere, an accountant. I am the third child of seven–five boys and two girls. As the daughter of a military man, my childhood was not as exciting as the that of the other kids in my neighborhood. My dad was a disciplinarian, so there were lots of restrictions at home.
“One day, I was playing with the kids in my neighborhood after school. My dad usually came home around 5 P.M., and it was expected that by that time we would have taken our baths and seated ourselves in front of our books. That day, I was in my element, having a lot of fun with the kids in the neighborhood. My dad caught me in the act and asked me, ‘What is the answer for 9 multiplied by 3?’ I was in shock and trembling, so I couldn’t answer. I regretted playing with the neighborhood kids that day. I also remember how my mom once ran a pair of scissors through my hair because she didn’t like my haircut. My parents were very strict.
“When I was young, my dad was transferred to Accra, the capital of Ghana, where I had my junior and high school education. I later furthered my education at the YWCA (Young Women’s Christian Association), where I obtained a certificate in catering. I was married and had one beautiful daughter. My husband was very supportive, and we were building a wonderful family and future for our daughter. Upon the demise of my husband, however, life became very difficult financially. Nothing seemed to work right. The catering business was not booming at that point, so I had to look for a second job to beef up our finances. That’s when I turned to the crafting business. One of my brothers was in the handicraft business, so I decided to join him and become a retailer. I have been doing it ever since.
“Starting on my own wasn't easy at first, because I had ventured into a business that I knew little about. But, with the support and guidance of my brother, I made it through. Now, things have normalized, and I’m grateful to God. I’m really enjoying the handicraft business, and I believe that great things will come out of this venture. I own a shop where I sell the crafts that I buy from various artisans. Selling these crafts is challenging, since not many people are patrons of the arts these days.
“As I searched for bigger and better platforms to market my handicrafts, a friend introduced me to Novica. I learned that it is a multinational platform with a lot of buyers. I am looking forward to making more money through this platform so I can afford my daughter’s college education. From the testimonies of other Novica artisans, I believe that my dream will be realized. I want to give a very big thanks to Novica for the opportunity.”