Home Sports PATH Ghana, GOC, Olympism365 Organise Multi-Stakeholder Meeting For NGOs, CBOs

PATH Ghana, GOC, Olympism365 Organise Multi-Stakeholder Meeting For NGOs, CBOs

Path Ghana Goc Olympism Organise Multi Stakeholder Meeting For Ngos Cbos
Path Ghana Goc Olympism Organise Multi Stakeholder Meeting For Ngos Cbos

PATH Ghana on Thursday, April 18th, 2024 hosted a Multi-Stakeholder Meeting at the Labadi Beach Hotel in Accra for Non-Governmental Organisations and Community Based Organisations in the fields of Health and Sports.

Present were Mr. Ben Nunoo Mensah, President of the Ghana Olympic Committee (GOC), Mr. Ollie Dudfield Associate Director of Olympism365, Ms. Helen McGuire of PATH Global Program Lead, Ms. Patience Cofie Country Manager of PATH Ghana, Dr. Bella, Bello Bitugu Director of Sport at the University of Ghana, Dr. Wisdom Atowoto Director of Research, Statistics and Information Management at the Ministry of Health, Ms. Abibatu Bavug of UN-Habitat, Alhaji Hafiz Adam, Chief Director MOH Mr. William Kartey Chief Director Ministry of Youth & Sports, Nana Adu Mankatta of Sports for All, Mr. Albert K. Frimpong of African Baseball and Ms. Patience Dapaah Snr. Advocacy and Communications Advisor, PATH.

The meeting attracted several non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in the education, sports, and health sectors as well as media personnel to gather information on Ghana’s national priorities, strategic plans, and targets as they relate to physical activity/community-based sport and health.

They were also to raise awareness of the community sport and health cooperative Sport for Health Initiative in Ghana among diverse and relevant stakeholders, gather stakeholder input on the role of Sport for Health Initiative towards achieving national priorities and targets, and provide a forum for stakeholders to share their activities and assets that are aligned with the goals of the Sport for Health Initiative.

President of the GOC, Mr. Ben Nunoo Mensah in his presentation said it is refreshing news that, Ghana has been selected as one of the five countries to form the first phase of the newly initiated Community Sport and Health Cooperation between the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) with PATH as the implementers.

“As President of the Olympic Movement in Ghana, I am particularly excited about this initiative as it falls in line with the Olympic Values and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal (SDG)3, which is to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages,” he said.

According to Mr. Mensah, the new collaboration between the IOC and PATH will increase access to health-enhancing community sports activities for over one million people across five countries by the year 2025. And as a Ghanaian, I am very glad that this country was selected as one of the first five.

“As you may all know the global optimism for sport, as ‘an important enabler for the SDGs by the United Nations appears in many countries’ policy documents. In Ghana, sport is linked to the social dimension of the SDGs. But the acknowledgment of the potential of sport as an enabler alone cannot be decisive evidence of deep commitment or successful implementation”.

He said the positive and direct effects of engaging in regular physical activity are noticeably apparent in the prevention of several chronic or Non-communicable diseases, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, hypertension, obesity, osteoporosis, and depression.

According to him the Report from the United Nations Inter-Agency Task Force on Sport for Development and Peace states that young people can benefit from physical activity as it contributes to developing healthy bones, efficient heart, and lung function as well as improved motor skills and cognitive function.

He called for the need to encourage Sports and Health well-being inclusion in sports by developing the interest of the youth from the schools in their communities.

He observed that although the Ghana Education Service requires at least 80 minutes per week of physical education in schools, in practice, this is often not achieved.

“When children and youth fail to achieve the minimum recommended physical activity levels, they are at risk of adverse health consequences” he stressed.

He noted that according to the IOC, the new cooperation with WHO and PATH will strengthen the role of sport in building healthy and active communities with three main objectives.

1. Improve access and retention in targeted community sports and physical activity programmes, thereby supporting more people, particularly women and girls, and people from diverse backgrounds and abilities, to be more active.

2. Enhance knowledge, understanding of, and appreciation for, the multiple benefits of regular physical activity and sports participation, which will lead to the prevention of non-communicable diseases, improved mental health and well-being, and social connections.

3. Strengthen policy planning and investment in community sport and physical activity participation opportunities and infrastructure as well as the physical activity legacies of the Olympic Games and other Global sports events.

He assured of the GOC’s support and appealed to key partners; Sports, Health, Education, and Local Government to make a conscious effort to link these policies and programmes to the vision of Olympism 365.

“Sports is a low-cost but very high-impact tool which we can all use to build together a more peaceful, more equal and more sustainable world for everyone, 365 days a year”

“If we can all use this low-cost, high-impact tool to eradicate poverty, end hunger, give good health and education, provide clean water, sanitation, and energy, push for climate action, strive for peace, justice and build strong institutions, this world will be a much much better place for generations unborn” he added.

The Associate Director of Olympism365, Mr. Ollie Dudfield said “As leaders in the health sector, sports leaders, actors in the health sector must respond to the lifestyle of the challenge and must as well be focused on the health well being.”

Mr. Dudfield called on the entities involved in championing Olympism 365 to have a common agenda in prosecuting this initiative.

Ms. Patience Cofie, Country Manager of PATH Ghana said health is very important and has been connected to various sectors including sports.

She said PATH Ghana focuses on strategic priorities in Ghana such as maternal health, malaria prevention, WASH, noncommunicable diseases, reproductive health, digital health supplies, and health system innovations and delivery.

Dr. Bello Bitugu who gave the summary of the meeting said lifestyles are different and every community has its priorities, while people living in high-class residential areas like Trassaco cannot communicate with same as people living at Ga Mashie or Tudu, while the sporting needs also defer, but it is idle for everyone to be active.

Olympism365 is the IOC’s strategy to strengthen the role of sport as an important enabler for the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in line with Recommendation 10 of the Olympic Agenda 2020+5.

The mission of PATH is to advance health equity through innovation and partnerships

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