Meet Dorcas. And remember the name. We think she will soon be an international celebrity in the steps of Belinda Baidoo and Menaye Donkor. She is, according to Lisa Lovatt-Smith, the former Fashion Director of Vogue magazine “The world’s next top model out of Africa”.
But who is this 18-year-old beauty?
Hers is a really cheering Cinderella story. She is the fourth born of 9 children, and when Dorcas was a young girl her mother was incapacitated for work when she suffered a severe stroke. The family’s fortunes took a hard knock, and they were all living precariously squeezed into a kiosk near La Paz when a concerned individual reported the situation to one of the social workers of the well known Ghanaian charity OAfrica. “ The situation was too horrible,” says Georgina Afrifa, the lady who referred the case to OAfrica. “The kiosk was just a temporary shelter and the children had very little to eat and were living by the roadside. They were all out of school. I just had to do something. I knew OAfrica would not send the children to an orphanage but rather help the mother to care for them.”
OAfrica, a charity that supports family care, was able to support the children to school and also provide a monthly cash grant to the family. In 2014, OAfrica also paid the rent advance to move them to a decent home. For 11 years Dorcas lived the life of a school girl, cared for by OAfrica, and was given a partial scholarship by St Peter’s Mission School in Medina, a institution that is generous and has helped so many children gain a good education by giving free and discounted placements to OAfrica beneficiaries. At home, Dorcas was always polite and helpful. Her mother is very happy that Dorcas was always a responsible sister: “She helped me a lot. She always bathed her younger siblings every morning and evening” , she told us.
Currently Dorcas in the 3rd year of SHS, but as her final exams have been postponed she decide to seek a job during the forced COVID-19 break. It was at this point that the President of OAfrica, Lisa Lovatt-Smith visited the family on their farm near Naswam. Herself an ex-model, the President of OAfrica has, because of her 20-year career in Vogue magazine, a finely tuned instinct as to who has potential and she immediately took some candid snaps of Dorcas and sent them to her fashion buddies. The response was unanimous “This girl has IT, that elusive quality that can make a top model”, said Nii Okai Djarbeng of Lightville photography and editor of Lightville magazine one of Ghana’s top international fashion photographers. Marcel Desailly , football legend and OAfrica Senior Global Ambassador told us “I want her to be a model. She can make it”! From Italy, designer Margherita Missoni concurred: “Dorcas is beautiful, if she comes to Europe we’d definitely work with her”
Today, Dorcas will be virtually outdoored on OAfrica’s Instagram feed @oafrica.org, as the “face “ of OAfrica the charity that helped her thrive.
Her first job, therefore, is as ambassador and spokesperson for OAfrica. “I am so happy to have this role!” she says. “It’s a way I can give back to OAfrica and also help me support my family more.” It is her first commission but unlikely to be her last.
Good luck @dorcasthemodel!
# oafrica #Vogue #dorcasthemodel # lisalovattsmith #fashion #model #blackbeauty #lightville # MenayeDonkor #BelindaBaidoo #MarcelDesailly #missoni #mmissoni