Name: Peace Hyde
Country of Origin: UK
Current Location: Accra, Ghana
Year of Relocation to West Africa: 2012
Tell us a bit about yourself
My name is Peace Hyde and I was born and raised in the UK. I have lived in the UK all my life working as a qualified Science teacher for pre-university students. I went to Middlesex University where I studied Psychology. I enjoy spending quality with my family and I am passionate about self-love and self-belief. I have currently relocated to Africa and I am enjoying the rich cultural heritage this beautiful place has to offer.
What prompted your move back to Ghana?
Being raised by Ghanaian parents, I guess I have always had a connection to Ghana even from a young age. I have always wanted to visit Ghana and see where my parents grew up and connect with some of the childhood memories my mum shared with us growing up. The problem was I never had the chance due to work and other commitments in the UK. I decided a few years back to set myself a target of things I wanted to achieve in my workplace as a Teacher. The Idea was, once a goal is achieved, I cross them off the list and continue doing so until I had a sheet of achieved targets. The last target on my list was achieving senior management status in the very competitive education sector. Once I crossed this off, I felt it was time for a new challenge and new opportunities. I was finally ready for Ghana.
Your work has taken you to both Nigeria and Ghana, how do the two countries compare?
The two countries are actually very similar, which was a big surprise for me. They both have a rich culture and amazing people. I consider myself a citizen of the world. I love the fact that Africans share a lot of similar beliefs, customs and cultural heritage. Nigeria is an absolutely beautiful place. I love the food, and the fast paced business environment of the country. Everybody in the country is very proud to be a Nigerian and that pride is very infectious to visitors who come there. Ghana is an absolutely lovely place. As a people we are very reserved and humble and things I’ve found tend to move at a much calmer and relaxed pace in Ghana than in Nigeria. The people of Ghana value respect and good morals more so in daily interactions. The food is amazing and everyone is so welcoming everywhere you go. They are both very beautiful places.
You pursued a career in education here in the UK for a number of years, progressing to a senior management role. Did you ever pursue a career in entertainment/media? If so, tell us about some of your experiences in doing so.
My main focus in the UK was education. I am absolutely passionate about education. It is something I take very seriously because I believe it is the key to unlocking the dreams of young minds. I am a strong advocate of the notion that you can only do one thing perfectly at any particular time. Hence, I only focused on Education in the UK. I quietly put my love for entertainment and media on hold until I was confident I had achieved all my goals in the field.
Tell us about Tales from the Powder Room, and how you went about becoming a presenter on the show.
The one thing I love about Tales is being able to contribute in some small part to a dilemma a viewer is going through. The show is very engaging and interesting because you never know what problem we will be solving until the letter from the viewer is read. The team approached me through my management and I fell in love with the project immediately. It is currently in its 3rd season and it is such a great honour to be considered as one of the powder room girls.
What do you love most about being a TV presenter in Ghana?
I love the fact that I get to meet a lot of talented, dynamic and inspirational people who are pushing boundaries and putting Ghana on the map. I feel Ghana has so much talent, and I strongly believe it is every Ghanaian’s duty to portray our beautiful land in a way, befitting to its beautiful cultural heritage. As a TV presenter, I get the rare opportunity to meet a lot of people who hold these same ideals and I am so blessed to be able to share ideas and listen to their stories. It is truly life-changing.
In the short time since you have been back in Africa, you already have a couple of film credits under your belt. What are some of the lessons that you’ve already learnt about the African film industry, and what advice would you offer to those seeking to make the move back to pursue a career in film?
It has been a steep learning curve. The industry is still developing and we have come so far as a nation of filmmakers. There are a lot of great people in the industry who continue to raise the bar on quality scripts, beautiful visuals and engaging content. One key lesson I would love to share with any aspiring actress who wants to get into film is that, only God can make you a star. I see a lot of young girls being exploited in this industry with promises of reaching unfathomable heights of stardom. Whatever you do, stay true to your morals and your beliefs, they brought you this far and they are good enough to make you the star that God wants you to be. Never compromise on those traits that make you special in God’s eyes. Preaching over.
What are some of the positives and negatives about life in Ghana?
There are so many positives. I get to enjoy 24 hour all year round sunshine, which if you are from the UK, is a very rare commodity. Ghana is a place where everything seems possible. There are so many opportunities and I enjoy the quality of life. From a negative point of view, I miss my creature comforts i.e. shopping in central London, busaba, tinsel town etc. Also a lot of people seem to think Ghana is way cheaper than the UK. I have found that is only true if you are visiting Ghana on a short-term basis. Living in Ghana on a full time basis is more expensive than the UK. For example, in the UK rent is paid monthly with sometimes a month and a half security deposit. In Ghana, you have to pay minimum of 2 years advance for rent. But all in all, any move back needs to be carefully considered by the individual and I would advice you plan carefully before embarking on this exciting new journey. There are a lot more positives than negatives.
What are your ambitions for the future?
I want to make a mark in the world. I want to be an inspiration to a lot of young people out there who were told to give up on their dreams or have been broken down so much that they are almost at the point of giving up. I want someone to be able to look at me and say if Peace could do it, then I can do it too. You can only be yourself, everyone else is taken.
Any other words of advice for those thinking about making the move?
Plan carefully and make sure you have a good idea of what you want to do. There are a lot of opportunities but there is also a lot of ways you can make mistakes. Things are not as structured as in the UK so it may be a bit of a shock to people who are not used to the way Africa works. All in all, if this is something you want to do, I would encourage you to do it because the rewards most definitely outweigh the risks.
Destination: Africa! aims to inspire our readers to make the move back home, through a series of interviews with others that have recently made the move successfully.
We are always on the lookout for inspiring stories of individuals that have successfully made the move to West Africa, so do get in touch with us via our Nominate section, if you know of any such people.