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'Schools in deprived communities need infrastructure'

BY: Samuel K. Obour

Ransford Tetteh, the Editor of the Daily Graphic, exchanging pleasantries with Mrs Gifty Akosua Baka, Country Director of CCFC while Mr Jim Carrie (right), Global Operations Vice-President of CCFC, looks on. Picture: NII MARTEY BOTCHWAY.The Country Director of the Christian Children's Fund of Canada (CCFC), Mrs Gifty Akosua Baka, has appealed to the government to provide schools in deprived communities with infrastructure and other logistics to improve quality education in those areas.

She said a baseline survey carried out by the CCFC in its operation areas indicated that a number of children in those communities could not read, despite initiatives by organisations such as the CCFC to complement the government’s efforts to improve on quality education.

She attributed the problem to lack of trained teachers and accommodation that resulted in teacher absenteeism.

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Mrs Baka made the appeal when she led the Vice-President, Global operations of the CCFC, Mr Jim Carrie, to call on the Editor of the Daily Graphic, Mr Ransford Tetteh in Accra. Mr Carrie visited the country to undertake field visits to the organisation’s project communities and apprise himself of its operations.

Also with them were Mr William Anim-Dankwa, Communications Manager of CCFC and Mr David Sulley, the organisation’s Grants and Projects Manager.

She said conditions in the deprived communities deterred trained teachers from accepting postings to those areas, hence the need to intensify various interventions to address those challenges.

Through public awareness and education on the importance of educating girls and parental responsibility for protecting them, and also through child sponsorship, many of the children in these communities are enrolled in school and are progressing from primary to secondary school, with ongoing support.

Mr Tetteh said the Daily Graphic was committed to highlighting issues related to gender and children, stressing that as its corporate social responsibility, the Graphic Communications Group  Limited (GCGL) produces the Junior Graphic for children to provide the platform for them to learn.

He expressed gratitude to the CCFC for its partnership with related organisations and said the GCGL would continue to rely on such friendly relationships with partners such as the CCFC to promote the welfare of children and underprivileged persons.

He advised the CCFC to draw up a programme to invite journalists to their project sites to know more about the challenges in those areas and how they could be highlighted and addressed.

Mr Carrie said his visit had left him with three main memories and mentioned that seeing young children in the communities enjoying the school environment was a sign of positive effort to keep them in school.

He also lauded the collaboration between chiefs and partners in the development process and what he described as “a process of giving children a voice to speak their mind, through drama, which sends a powerful message across”.

By Salome Donkor/Daily Graphic/Ghana