GHANA – Health ambassadors’ club initiated at the Cape Coast School for the Deaf and Blind

The club aims to equip school children with disabilities with information about their reproductive and sexual health. It was initiated by the Ghana Health Service and the Ghana Education Service with funding from UNFPA.

Mrs Thywill Kpe, Central Regional Director of the Department of Gender, said more often than not, people with disabilities (PWDs) were not included in programmes aimed at improving adolescent reproductive health. She said PWDs formed 10% of the Ghanaian population, including young people, and that poor reproductive and sexual health could deprive young ones of their dreams. Thus, any initiative to equip them with information about their reproductive health must be lauded. She urged young girls to be bold and speak against any form of sexual harassment that they encounter.

Nana Ama Amissah II, Queen Mother of Mankessim Traditional Area, urged the children to join the company of good friends who would give them good advice, adding that “you should not take boyfriends and girlfriends at this stage of your life”. She called on teachers and all stakeholders to assist the children to go through adolescence successfully and advised them against engaging in premarital sex: “You have to wait for the right time, you may become pregnant or contract sexually transmitted diseases when you start having sex at this time.”

Mrs Stella Sackey, Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer at the Central Regional Health Directorate, said there is the need for the country to pay attention to its adolescents in order to have responsible adults. She called on the youth to reduce sexual activities and channel their efforts into more productive ventures to unearth their talents.

Mr Mutaru Goro, UNFPA Programme Associate, said UNFPA is committed to ensuring that young ones make informed choices to help them fulfil their potential and dreams. Mr Setumtee Ametewee, Headmaster of Cape Coast School for the Deaf and Blind, expressed gratitude for the initiative. He said throughout the world, millions of young girls are being coerced into unwanted sex or marriage which places them at the risk of unwanted pregnancies, unsafe abortion and sexually transmitted diseases.

SOURCE: Business Ghana, 1 December 2018 ; PHOTO