Sr Monica Smyth
Fr Philip Addo
Fr. Philip is the chaplain. In 1999 Philip was about to be ordained Deacon when he was involved in a tragic car accident. He broke his neck and suffered a bad head injury. He was completely paralysed from the neck down. When the hospital could do no more he was discharged to the care of Ahotokurom on the verge of death. Sr Monica and the team nursed Philip back to life and then in 2001 he came to the UK for a short period of rehabilitation. He gained a little movement in his arms and learnt how to manage his life from a wheelchair. Not once in all this time did Philip stop believing that one day he would be ordained.
In September 2007 Philip's depth of faith was affirmed and he was ordained Deacon. He was then ordained to the Priesthood on 2nd December 2007 at St Francis de Sales Cathedral in Cape Coast. He is the first person paralysed from the neck down to be ordained as a priest in Ghana.
Sister Monica is responsibile for St Clare’s and the healthcare of all connected with the project.
She is a Dublin woman born and bred and has been a member of the Daughters of Mary and Joseph since the mid 1960s. Having spent most of that time in Ghana she is a jewel in the community of Ahoto. By profession she is a midwife; by life, a totally dedicated, gentle, caring lady who loves life and all that it brings. Her faith is deep and spirituality flows from her in her total care of all those in need. She is treasured by the congregation but especially by the community of Ahoto and surrounding villages.
She recently celebrated her 60th birthday but, to those who have lived with her all these years, she is ageless. That black hair is now grey but her sparkling eyes remain full of joy and she exudes happiness and generosity.
Mark Mantey was born at the "camp". Both his parents had suffered leprosy. Mark is the third child in a family of seven children.
He was a bright youngster and determined to go to school. He sold firewood and charcoal to raise the necessary funds to pay his own school fees. Mark had to walk to school, 14 kilometers each way every day. That was 28 kilometers just to get an education!
As a teenager when he would have been expected to leave home and make his own way in the world, an incident at the leprosarium made him commit himself to forging a better life for his people. He witnessed leprosy patients being thrown off the bus because the workers at the leprosarium were not comfortable traveling with leprosy patients. The bus had actually been provided for the benefit of people with leprosy and yet they were the ones to be ejected. Mark was deeply affected by the injustice and resolved to devote his life to "his people".
He became involved in the early establishment of Ahotokurom and soon established himself as a committed and able worker. He became Assistant Director of the centre in 1988 at the age of 28. He was sent to the UK to train in youth and community work and later returned to the Ghana where he developed a number of rehabilitation projects including a major self-build housing project to completely redevelop the "camp".
In 2001 an Irish benefactor sponsored his continued education in University of Limerick and in 2013 he graduated as a Doctor of Philosophy having completed a thesis on development themes focussing on the role of traditional leaders and elected representatives.
He is still a "leader" of the people and directly involved in supporting the development of Ahotokurom as Director of the Padre Pio rehabilitation centre. He is an inspiration to all and respectfully called "senior" by the whole community for his visionary support and leadership.
Information to follow soon
Mark Mantey PhD
The management Team is responsible for the day to day work:
Joe was born and raised in the western regions of Ghana, in a town called Ifuma, where he also completed middle school. In 1981, at the age of 19, Joe became acquainted with the rehabilitation program in Ahotokurom, which encouraged him to attend technical school in Kumasi, from which he graduated in 1985. Joe then returned to Ahotokurom, in order to develop and improve the infrastructure of the compound at Ahotokurom. Joe's current role at Padre Pio is the maintenance manager, a role he has undertaken since 2014. His primary duty is to keep the compound clean and fully operational, along with managing any renovations need on the site. Joe also maintains the compound's farm and grows Tomatoes, pineapples, and mangos.
Grace grew up and completed middle school in Enyinkurom, before she began work at Padre Pio as a Nursery Assistant. Grace has worked at Ahotokurom for 30 years and oversaw the transition of the former nursery to the now St.Elizabeth special needs school in 2005. Grace's current role as the acting manger of St.Elizabeth entails her to organise and advise staff looking after all the children in the school, alongside teaching the vocational courses at St.Elizabeth's. This involves teaching the child how to cook, clean and look after themselves independently while also developing craft skills with the construction of palm crosses. Grace also engages in Home visits with the parents of children at St.Elizabeth, which occur every three months and involve progress updates and the establishment of attainable goals for each individual child.
Mr Bernard Appiah-Manu
Mr Bernard Appiah-Manu is responsible for Transport and logistics.
Everybody who has visited Ahotokurom knows Bernard. He has worked there since 1983 and is now the Transport Manager as well as serving as a Catechist. He lives on site with his wife (called Mercy) and 5 children.
His day starts at 6:15am when the first bus run starts. The last run, a round trip of 36km starts at 3pm.
In between there is shopping, paying Ahotokurom's bills, collecting post, as well as airport and hospital runs. Bernard is a vital member of the Ahotokurom team.
Board of Directors
The work of the rehabilitation centre is overseen by a board of directors who oversee the direction and development of the centre. Each has expertise in particular areas of practice and bring their expertise and connections to the benefit of the work. The chairwoman is Sr. Monica Smyth.
The other board members are:
Fr. Robert Hagan (Priest and representing the Archdiocese of Cape Coast)
Ms. Mercy Achaw (Nurse specialist)
Dr. Ekow Otabil (Doctor with a specialism in treatment of skin diseases)
Mr. Nolly Tei (Construction engineer currently working with Ghana Highways)
Mr. Abraham (Retired Educationalist)
Nana Kodwo-Eduakwa (Land Economist and the Chief of Atonkwa)
Sr. Monica Smyth (DMJ Sister and Nurse)
Sr. Pat Pearson (DMJ Sister and Social Worker)