WINNEBA, GHANA (CBS19 NEWS) -- A group of 19 people from Central Virginia is in Ghana this week and next, part of a cultural exchange with the African country of 34 million people.

The group is learning about African culture and history courtesy of the Charlottesville Winneba Foundation. Winneba has been a sister city of Charlottesville's for over a decade.

"They don't have everything that we have, and it has just been such a blessing to see how grateful they are just to have a sucker or a pen or a pencil, and it has truly blessed my heart just to be able to come and give some of what I have to them," said Gaynell Spinner of Apex Clean Energy.

The group toured a school in an impoverished fishing village that has benefited from Charlottesville donations. It has also toured Winneba Municipal Hospital, beneficiary of hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations from a Charlottesville philanthropist. The hospital has new birthing beds in the maternity ward, new equipment to care for newborns and badly needed eye equipment.

And Charlottesville is now home to a member of royalty, as former Mayor Dave Norris was made an honorary member of the Effutu tribe royal family.

This weekend, the group will be guests of honor at a hunting festival that is hundreds of years old.