Collaborate effectively to resolve child marriage cases – Ministry

Social Coordination Committee
Social Coordination Committee

Dr Afisah Zakariah, Chief Director, Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, has underscored the need for effective collaboration and coordination to resolve cases of child marriages, defilements and other social protection issues.

She said unresolved or partially resolved cases were largely due to ineffective collaboration and coordination amongst various stakeholder institutions.

Dr Zakariah said this at the inauguration of the Social Protection Inter-Sectoral Technical Sub-Committee on Case Management for the Single Window Citizen Engagement (SWCES) at the Gender Ministry.

The Single Window Citizen Engagement (SWCES), a unit under the Social Protection Directorate of the Ministry of Gender (MoGCSP), was established to coordinate and streamline social protection related grievance redress to achieve efficiency and value for money.

It was later expanded to receive complaints relating to other social issues such as sexual and gender-based violence, child abuse, domestic violence and child marriages within the mandate of the Ministry.

Dr Zakariah said to ensure effective and efficient delivery of the mandate of the Service, it would require a formidable institutional arrangement and partnership.

Hence, she said the SPiSTC had recommended the establishment of a Sub- Committee on Cases.

“…All social protection intervention had their programme level grievance redress mechanism but to enhance coordination, monitoring, effectiveness and timely resolution of grievances within the social protection space, the SWCES was operationalised,” she said.

The Chief Director said the SWCES had three main components – the Helpline of Hope Call Centre, Unified Case Management System, and Referral System.

She said complaints, requests, and inquiries were received by the Service through the Helpline of Hope Call Centre from the citizenry and beneficiaries of social protection interventions for redress.

Dr Zakariah said the Sub-Committee would provide case technical backstopping for the SWCES and oversee the development and implementation of a Comprehensive Case Management Policy to improve service delivery. 

She said the Ministry with support from the SPiSTC and the World Bank had, therefore, developed a Terms of Reference (TOR), which was expected to be validated and approved by the Sub-Committee to guide its operations.

The Chief Director applauded them for their enormous contributions and efforts towards promoting and protecting the welfare of the poor and vulnerable.

“… And I am of firm believe that you will use the same energy, commitment, and zeal to support the SWCES to deliver effectively and improve coordination and grievance handling and referral system in Ghana,” she said.

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