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President Akufo-Addo donates GHC20,000 to a man who uses his mouth to draw

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Akufo-Addo donates GHC20,000 to a man

President Akufo-Addo donates GHC20,000 to a man who uses his mouth to draw

President Akufo-Addo has donated a sum of GHC20,000 to a physically challenged painter, Joel Acheampong, who draws won canvas with his mouth to support his art work.

The donation was made on behalf of the president by the executive director of the National Commission on Culture, Janet Edna Nyame, at the ongoing National Festival of Arts and Culture (NAFAC) at the Adisadel School Park in Cape Coast.

All four limbs of Acheampong, popularly known as “the Mouth Painter”, are dysfunctional.

At age five, he fell sick with a fever but never recovered and began to grow weaker with each passing day. After many attempts to solve the problem at prayer camps, hospitals and herbal shops, his parents gave up and he had to live with his condition.

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When Acheampong discovered in his twenties that he may have been suffering from polio, he decided to make the most of life, even with his challenge.

With the help of a benefactor, he decided to try painting but after his hands failed him many times because they could not grip the brush firmly, he turned to his mouth.

Acheampong trained over and over in the confines of his room and when the art bloomed, he emerged to start painting.

Today, his work is appreciated both nationally and internationally and he has painted high-profile personalities, including the Second Lady, Hajia Samira Bawumia.

Acheampong, who is exhibiting his work at the ongoing NAFAC, was a guest on the Between Hours show with Nyaniba on Asaase 100.3 in Cape Coast on Wednesday, 14 December. He called for support from the general public to expand his business.

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“I need support to grow and sell my art so I can serve as an example to many others who find themselves in similar situations and [I] also want to train more youth,” he said.

Fortunately for Acheampong, his call received a prompt response from President Akufo-Addo just a day after his appearance on the show.

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