Pregnant Women

International Needs Ghana (INGH), a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) with focus on transforming lives and changing communities has engaged state actors with child protection mandate from the Afadzato South and North Dayi Districts on adolescent pregnancies, abuse and exploitation.

The engagement, held in Kpando formed part of the Organisation’s Safe and Protective Environment for Adolescent Development (SPREAD) project to promote a safe environment for adolescent boys and girls to prevent and reduce adolescent pregnancies, abuse and exploitation at the community levels.

Madam Rita Abla Dugbenu, Project Officer, INGH, addressing participants noted that a baseline data collected in ten selected communities in the Afadzato South and North Dayi Districts of the Volta Region, revealed that adolescent pregnancies, abuse and exploitation at the community levels were still pronounced.

She said there were increases in teenage pregnancies, substance abuse and escape of perpetrators, escape of males who impregnate adolescent girls, children staying out late at nights and child neglect.

Madam Dugbenu noted that the presence of Domestic Victim and Violence Support Unit (DOVVSU) and initiating punitive measures to deter perpetrators would enable adolescent boys and girls get empowered in achieving their aims and become responsible adults.

Some participants noted that some challenges to ensuring effective adolescent right was the unwillingness of adolescent boys and girls to avail themselves to adolescent health education, while most parents were also not cooperating.

Mr. Israel Akrobortu, Volta Regional Director, Department of Children at the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, called for the involvement of religious leaders in promoting adolescent health rights education.

Madam Fidelia Duadze, Project Officer, INGH, said although the Corona virus disease had slowed down the SPREAD project in terms of large community engagements, the Organisation had resorted to radio, small groups and community public address systems, to continue reaching adolescent girls and boys as well as adults and parents.

She said under the SPREAD project, INGH and UNICEF had provided a three-month supply of “dignity kits” to over 800 adolescent girls in the Districts to improve proper menstrual hygiene management and prevent transactional sex especially in the wake of COVID-19.

Madam Theresa Bruku, Afadzato South District Director of Health Services, noted that there was increase in adolescent pregnancies in the Afadzato South and North Dayi Districts from January to May this year with 73 and 62 cases respectively.

Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Alex Cosmos, Afadzato South District Police Commander, noted that some families sought for an out-of-court defilement case settlement, which the law prohibited and called on those who practiced the act to desist.


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