Reginald Ffoulkes Crabbe is in charge of the Greater Accra region of Ghana as Regional Councillor with the YMCA.
In March 2011, there was a leadership retreat dedicated to reviewing the Ghana YMCA and its membership. “It was decided we need to open up the YMCA to get more support and membership.”
The fundraising committee decided that they needed to showcase what YMCA has been doing to improve low visibility, and planned to have a high-profile community fundraising event to raise money from outside donors.
They wanted to target influential people, to get an icon in the community to lend their name to the cause. “That’s when I thought of former president John A. Kufuor,” said Reginald. “He’s hard to get though, so we wondered how to approach him.”
Reginald was eager to get him on board. “All I needed was a telephone number to get to his personal assistance, so I had to ask around. Fortunately, I got the number through a youth leader of his political party. I phoned his secretary. I introduced myself and indicated to him the YMCA wanted to tell his story. I also indicated that YMCAs all over Africa wanted to hear the YMCA story, and needed the president to share his testimony. He asked me to forward a letter in order to arrange a meeting.”
The meeting was successful, and Reginald managed to enroll Ghana’s former president as a YMCA member.
He explained that his success was largely due to the way he communicated. “I believe my approach and the way I carried myself helped.” When approaching the former president, Reginald explained that he used many of the skills he gained through his S2C training in Naivasha, Kenya, in 2011: “Knowing the skills to create rapport, perfect application of the 30-second pitch, the way I approached the conversation and introduced myself, knowing my audience… I had all of that.”
By: Reginald Ffoulkes Crabbe, Ghana
This article forms part of a series of success stories of 15 recently graduated S2C Ambassadors. Subject to Citizen (S2C) is the foundational philosophy of all our work both within the YMCA movement, driven by the Africa Alliance of YMCAs (AAYMCA), and in our programmatic outputs. This philosophy emphasises the importance of young people having a voice, space and ability to influence their choices and the outcome of their lives as individuals and within their communities. S2C Ambassadors graduate after a three-year training programme, and Reginald is from the first group who recently graduated in Zimbabwe, June 2012.