Ms Benedicta Gogo, a member of Clean Ghana Action Ambassadors, an NGO on sanitation, has urged the inclusion of sanitation in the curriculum of basic and secondary schools to inculcate the attitude of good sanitation practices in the youth.
“The Bible says in Proverbs 22:6; Train up a child in the way he or she should go and when he grows he will not depart from it.
“This means if we want a sustainable behavioural change among Ghanaians concerning sanitation, there is the need to add sanitation as a course to the curriculum of all basic and secondary schools in the country,” she said.
Ms Gogo gave the advice during a presentation in connection with the preparation of a documentary by the Clean Ghana Action Ambassadors on sanitation at the Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources.
She said over the past few years, so many young people had come up with ground breaking innovative solutions to the problem of sanitation, and that, there was the need “to address the issue of waste not ending up in the sea, gutters and in the streets.”
“People with innovative ideas on how to turn our waste into something useful should be encouraged by the government, private organisations and individuals, through partnerships and financial support, should turn theses great innovations into businesses that can create employment for the youth in the country,” she said.
Ms Gogo said there was the need to provide waste bins at all public places, which should be monitored and collected on a daily basis, and that, a task force should be deployed at public places to ensure that people who litter the city were fined on the spot without any consideration.
She called on the youth to be creative and help in the development of positive attitudes that would assist in solving the sanitation challenges facing the country.
“We can also leverage on the power of social media to educate ourselves and advocate for an improved sanitation regime in Ghana. As the saying goes, charity begins at home; let us start from our homes by cleaning up our neighbourhood, creating awareness about the effects of poor sanitation and discourage others from throwing rubbish on the streets and engaging in open defecation,” she said.
Ms Gogo said change was difficult and as a result must be treated as a process and not as an event.
“In handling the resistance to the change, there was the need to engage the citizens and provide them with all the information they may need to enlighten them about the change process and to ensure that they take ownership of the change.
“Persistence is key and the best way to achieve greater results in solving the sanitation problem, also we have to learn from the success stories of other countries. A clean Ghana is possible. It begins with all of us,” she said.