“Anyone can father a child, but being a dad takes real courage. Fathers play a role that can never be underestimated in every child’s life – a role that can greatly impact a child and help shape them into the person they become. Another person cannot fill this role.”
These are sentiments shared by fathers; Michael Chartey Larweh, Emmanuel Asiedu and Mr Prosper, all Bolt drivers in Ghana.
Father’s Day isn’t just another day to tick off the calendar or a day for dads to get more ties. It’s celebrated worldwide on the third Sunday so that dads, grandfathers, uncles and even stepdads can be given the utmost honour they deserve no matter where they find themselves.
This year, to honour Fathers, Bolt Ghana has decided to allow some fathers who operate on the platform to share their stories and shine a light on the many sacrifices fathers make but may sometimes go unrecognised.
These fathers currently work as drivers with the fastest-growing ride-hailing platform in Ghana and have different fatherhood journeys.
According to Michael Larweh, he became a father a little under two years ago, narrates it has not been an easy feat. He revealed that although the responsibility of fatherhood is fulfilling, it has been a challenging task, and in this short time of being a dad, he has come to understand that there are fathers and there are dads. “There are fathers, and there are dads. The difference is that dads are always available, no matter the circumstance. They always show up even if it is difficult to do.”
“Before I became a father, I thought it would be easy because growing up; my father made it look so easy. He never told us how tough being a father could be, and never did he reveal to us the many sacrifices he had to make to provide his children with their basic needs,” Michael revealed.
Speaking on the advice he would give to expectant fathers, Mr Larweh said, “Just make sure you are always available for your child. Even in times when you do not have the means to provide, make sure your family is aware that you are trying your best.”
Hearing Michael, who has just one child speak on fatherhood gives a fair idea of how daunting it can be. Now, imagine having seven. How does one constantly make himself available for not one but seven children?
That is the story of Emmanuel Asiedu, who has fathered and continues to father seven biological children for the past 25 years. According to Asiedu, his seven children are his world. He would move heaven and earth just to ensure that they have all that they need.
He recounts a time he had to migrate to Dubai in search of greener pastures only to return to Ghana to be the sole carer for his children because their mother also left the country to make a better life for herself.
During those times of being a single parent, one thing he had wished for was that he would have prepared himself for the struggles associated with being a parent.
“I wish there would be no struggle in life because I have really suffered as a father. I took care of most of the children when their mother was away. I would carry them, bathe them, clothe and feed them and make sure that every basic need of theirs has been provided,” Asiedu lamented.
“It’s been a tough journey and I know there are many fathers who feel the same. I hope and pray that a time would come when fathers are given their due honour,” he added.
When asked what advice for fathers, Asiedu, not towing too far from Emmanuel’s words, said, “Even if you don’t have anything, show love and care to your children. Be responsible for them, and you will earn their respect, trust and support.”
“No matter the struggles you face, don’t abandon your children. Once your heart is pure and you make an effort to care for your children, God will bless the work of your hands, and no matter how little, it will always be enough for you and your family,” he submitted.
Mr Prosper, father for the most years at Bolt, said, “For every child, there is a father, so if you are the father, make sure you take responsibility for your child.”
In their final submissions, each of these remarkable fathers quickly pointed out how becoming Bolt drivers had been life-changing and even more so on their finances.
This is made possible by Bolt’s unbeatable earnings for drivers who earn up to GHS1,000 per week. Additionally, depending on a driver’s activity on the Bolt platform, they may pay very little to no commission on their fares.
Mr Prosper recounts when Bolt drivers would pay as low as 0% commission if they would meet and exceed their targets for the day.
They also revealed that the commission Bolt takes on rides is 20%, which is significantly lower than what other ride-hailing businesses, making it easy for drivers to make more money for the things that really matter and in the case of these fathers, this means having more income to take care of your family and navigate the responsibilities that come along with fatherhood.
Fathers are the strongest pillars of support a child could have throughout their lifetime. They must be seen and celebrated for the many sacrifices and work they also put in to raise children.
This Father’s Day, honour your father, do something out of the ordinary for him, show him you appreciate him and let him know that just as for every child, there is a father, so must there be a child for every father.