How A Trip To Accra Inspired Deijha To Trade Her 8 Year Career In NYC For A Food Truck Business In Ghana
By Parker Diakite
A trip to Accra with a childhood friend back in 2015 is what sparked Deijha’s interest to relocate to Ghana.
“When I first stepped off the plane, I was just so amazed by the welcoming atmosphere and just the culture,” she said.
Four years later, Deijha decided to take a leap of faith and traded her 9-to-5 life in New York for palm trees in West Africa where she would soon invest in her food truck company “Deijhas Vu’s Jerk Hut.”
In an interview with Travel Noire, Deijha opened up about how making the move to Africa was not easy financially and emotionally but figured out how to make it work after a year of planning.
Travel Noire: After you decided you would relocate, how did you prepare for a move to Ghana.
It wasn’t easy at all. First, explaining to my family that I want to move to Africa, it was like no one took me seriously. But for me, I felt it in my soul that I would do it.
I also felt at the time that this was bigger than me. I felt I had to show African Americans back at home what Africa actually is and how you can come here and succeed. It doesn’t make sense to me how there can be other cultures making money here and not Black Americans.
I want to show people back home that you can come here and live more comfortably than in the US.
Travel Noire: Money is always a concern for people who are looking to relocate. How did you go about preparing financially for life in Ghana?
I was working at the post office for 8 years and after the first 3, I knew that it wasn’t the life for me. I love to travel and the idea of having two-to-three weeks of vacation just didn’t make sense to me. After the first trip, I had it in my mind and knew that relocating was what I was going to do. I just didn’t know when and how I was going to do it.
I started listening to podcasts, saving my money and only lived off what was needed. It took me one year to plan my move. I only went to work, had gas and food for the week, and I sacrificed going out to save money. I had to shift my focus.
Travel Noire: What advice would you give to our readers who are wanting to relocate to Ghana?
You have to get up and take that risk and trust your instinct. When you decide you’re ready, save your money, figure out what you need, and do this all ahead of time. I took a year to plan where I would move, how much would be needed to start my business and planned accordingly by paying off debt and bills while living in America so I could just leave.
I would say that $10,000 is a good number to start with for a year if you’re planning on investing. I would not rely on finding a job here because the wages are low, so make sure your plan involves investing or working remotely.
Travel Noire: You’re currently finishing up the final details on your food truck. Tell our readers more about your business.
Deijha: I saw Jamaican flags everywhere during my first trip which is what kind of sparked me to invest in a food truck serving Jamaican cuisine.
I named it Deijhas Vu’s Jerk Hut obviously because it’s a play on words because my name is Deijha but it also refers to the fact that I’ve been here before. You know spiritually and the history of our ancestors, we’ve been here before.