College For Ama (CoFA), a non-governmental organisation committed to girl-child education, has organised a training camp for young girls in two deprived communities in the country.
The two-week camp was held in memory of the late Professor Nana Araba Apt, one of the founders of CoFA, aimed at providing educational opportunities for adolescent girls in rural areas to attain college education through mentorship and empowerment programmes.
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This year, the 10th CoFA summer training camp brought together 40 young girls from the Berekuso Presbyterian Basic School in the Eastern Region and the Pokuase Methodist 2 Basic School in the Greater Accra.
At the opening session of the camp in Accra on Monday, a co-founder of CoFA, Mrs Lydia Bedwei, underscored the need for young girls to have higher education which she said was one way to address poverty in the society.
She observed that students in rural areas, particularly young girls, did not get equal opportunities to make it through to colleges and universities.
Mrs Bedwei said students were selected from the Central Region for its first edition and added that the organisation continued to enlighten adolescents.
She stated that with the vision of the organisation, coupled with the government’s initiative of free Senior High School (SHS), CoFA would increase its population in the years to come.
She urged the government to focus more attention on basic education to ensure quality foundation for the younger ones, stating for instance that “posting good teachers to the rural areas will enhance skills development of young girls.”
She lauded its sponsors, including some individuals, friends of CoFA in London, African Mining Services (AMS) and Access Bank, for their efforts to ensure that girls were empowered.
The Administrative Manager of CoFA, Mrs Jacqueline Daku-Mante, said although the enrolment of young girls under the CoFA initiative had reduced, compared to the previous years, it was to ensure that girls would get the best out of the training.
“This year, CoFA has added coding, an advanced computer programming technology, to the subjects to be taught during the camp and it would be tested at the end of the camp,” she stated.
Mrs Daku-Mante said despite the unfortunate loss of Nana Apt this year, the organisation had drawn its strategic plans for the next five years to incorporate science, technology and engineering as areas of study for the girls.
For her part, the Girls Education Officer of the Ghana Education Service (GES) in the Atiwa District, Ms Gloria Apraku-Aparlouis, advised the young girls to take advantage of the CoFA platform to build their confidence as women, stating that self-discipline and motivation were keys to enhance girl-child education in the society.
“You are worthier than the illegal miners who always destroy your bright future by impregnating you. Make higher education your aim and it will provide you with a beautiful future,” she added.