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Regional News of Saturday, 21 August 2021


Committee inaugurated to oversee ECCD issues in Upper East

The Committe members take a group photo after inauguration The Committe members take a group photo after inauguration

A 13-member Upper East Regional committee to oversee Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) issues has been inaugurated in Bolgatanga.

The committee is to facilitate coordination between health and education, early childhood protection, social services as well as provide integrated holistic support for families and children in the region.

The committee is made up of Alhaji Mahamadu Azonko, the Upper East Regional Coordinating Director as convener, and Ms Georgina Aberese –Ako of the Department of women and Children as the secretary and also advise the Coordinating council on issues of child survival, growth, and development.

Ms Esenam Kavi De Souza, the Country Manager of Programmes of ‘Children Believe’ (CB), a Non-Governmental Organization, indicated that CB was supporting the establishment of the committee through the Regional Coordinating Council (RCC) to enable members to learn and share their experiences and be more effective.

She said apart from the Upper East Regional Coordinating Council, her outfit had also facilitated three RCCs including the Savanna and, Northern regions as a start off the same committees and hoped they would help the establishment of similar committees in districts and communities to work towards children’s development.

The CB, formerly known as the Christian Children’s Fund of Canada, is working globally to empower children. It supports children to bring them hope and for them to realize their full potential.

“We believe that if we support communities to thrive, we also achieve the desired change we are looking for and also help people to come out of poverty”, she said.

In the nine districts that CB works, she said key interventions that were undertaken included child rights and protection, equality for boys and girls, and early childhood development from zero to eight years.
Other interventions included economic empowerment, nutrition, education, child rights, and child protection.

“We believe that when the foundation is set right then the superstructure is firm” Ms De Sousa added.

Based on an assessment conducted on early childhood policies, CB sought to find out what structures existed, how they functioned and who the key players were, and how the CB could help to bridge the gaps, however the Country Manager said none of them existed.

“Each of us has a key role to play in child development and pursuance of the sustainable development goals,” Madam De Sousa stressed.

Alhaji Mahamadu Azonko, the Regional Coordinating Director, noted the need to invest in children at the early part of their development and urged all to support the course.

He said the Early Childhood policy of 2004 had not seen the implementation of the needed arrangements after its formulation due to systemic challenges.

He thanked the CB and other development partners for charting the new course and urged members of the committee to be committed and collectively work to sustain the regional early childhood development committee.

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