The Baptist Child Development Programmes (BCDP), a Tamale based Non-Governmental Organisation has commissioned an Early Childhood Development (ECD) centre in Cheyoli, as part of its commitment to protecting childrens’ rights in the area.
Cheyoli, a community in the Kumbungu District of the Northern region, had a dilapidated building that housed pre-children, with inadequate sanitary facilities, teaching and learning materials until the intervention of BCDP, which built a centre to meet the needs of the pre-school children.
The construction of the centre, which was funded by Child Fund Taiwan through the Christian Children’s Fund of Canada (CCFC) was valued at GH¢183,572.55 and designed to accommodate 120 children, to ease congestion and provide suitable environment for learning.
The Programmes Manager of CCFC, Madam Teresa Banoba Baveng, noted that a survey conducted by the Ghana Statistical Service in 2010, indicated that early childhood education was low in the Northern Region and said this informed the reason for the 35 ECD centres provided in the region, with recreational facilities and adequate furniture.
She, however, lamented how these ECD and their play equipment in the region had not been properly handled, leading to their destruction within the first two years of their construction.
She urged parents to enrol their wards at the centre irrespective of their sex, and encouraged them to develop keen interest in the welfare of these children as well as take care of the facility to keep them in good shape at all times.
Madam Baveng further appealed to the Directorate of the Ghana Education Service (GES) and the District Assembly to post qualified teachers to the school, check teacher absenteeism and strengthen supervision, so that government funds allocated to the maintenance of such facilities could be redirected to other important projects.
Hajia Abiba Saaka, the District Director of Education for Kumbungu commended the Baptist Child Development Programme for the gesture and supporting education in the district, and pledged the support of the GES in the maintenance of the newly constructed centre.
She mentioned that, the construction and commissioning of the centre was timely and added that the lack of infrastructure was major problem confronting schools in the Northern Region, in spite of government support for other sectors of development.