Prioritise issues affecting children holistic development

Social Committee Meeting

Stakeholders in child protection have been urged to prioritise issues affecting children and eliminate barriers to their holistic development.

Mr Stepehn Ofosu, Ashanti Regional Director of the Department of Children, who made the call, said effective education and sensitisation of parents and guardians, were essential in maintaining proper care and love for children.

He was speaking at a meeting of the Ashanti regional child protection committee in Kumasi to deliberate on issues concerning children in the region.

The Child Protection Committee was instituted by the United Nation Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in 2016 for organisations and departments whose work is related to children, to meet and discuss issues concerning children.

Mr Ofosu pointed out that, the agenda of the regional Committee was to discuss and find lasting solutions to issues that were counter-productive to child development and freedom.

“The Child Protection Committee is here to support the efforts of all organizations to promote, protect and defend the rights of the children, and we are not resting, we will make sure children are not abused, maltreated and enjoy all that’s due them.”

The meeting, which is held quarterly, discussed reports on headcount on street children in Kumasi, recommendations for state agencies, as well as how best parents and community members can help address the issue of children using mobile phones in schools.

It also discussed the increase in abuse due to economic hardships as well as progress of the Integrated Social Services Monitoring.

The ISS Monitoring comprises various organisations that share ideas on resources to handle issues of children at their level and currently being implemented in the Asokore Mampong, Afigya Kwabre South, Afigya Kwabre North, Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly and Amansie West districts.

According to Mr Ofosu, the outcomes of the ISS monitoring had been progressive and explained that the only challenge bothered some districts not being able to access their funds from the district assemblies.

Madam Aba Oppong, Executive Director for Rights and Responsibilities Initiative Ghana, who elaborated on the menace of children using phones in school, said it had introduced children to many immoral practices.

She called on parents and school authorities to monitor children when using phones to reduce the negative contents most children accessed.

Madam Oppong, who is also a member of the Committee, suggested that regular inspections should be done at dormitories during school hours to flash out hidden phones, adding that, students must be authorized to make calls from masters and mistresses’ houses only.

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