Talensi District: Mental patients assured of support from Asembly

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Mr Christopher Boatbil Sormiteyema, District Chief Executive (DCE) for Talensi in the Upper East Region, has given the assurance that the Assembly would support persons with mental disorders to help them improve on their livelihoods.

The DCE gave the assurance during a project dubbed “Building Productive Skills of Women, Men and Youth Affected by Mental Disorders in Northern Ghana for Enhanced Recovery and Income” at the Baare community.
The Project with funding support from the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) was implemented by Basic Needs-Ghana in some selected communities in the Northern, Upper East and Upper West Regions.

It provided livelihoods support in the areas of vegetable farming, livestock rearing and vocational training such as tailoring and equipment to persons with mental disorders.
The DCE stressed that the Assembly would provide a congenial atmosphere for persons with mental disorders by ensuring that they got enrolled in the Livelihood Empowerment Programme Against Poverty (LEAP).

He stated that the Assembly would empower the Department of Community Development and Social Welfare to intensify its outreach programmes to educate community members on the need to change their attitudes towards Persons with mental disorders.
The DCE who advocated vocational skills training for them, stated that the Talensi District Assembly through its Business Advisory unit would provide vocational training as well as ensure that they benefitted from percentage of the District Assembly’s Common fund just like persons living with disabilities.

Mr Adam Dokurugu, Programmes Manager of Basic Needs-Ghana who spoke on behalf of the Executive Director of Basic Needs Ghana, stated that most funding agencies had refused to support to address the phenomenon except some few ones and commended KOICA for the support.

He stressed the need for the various Municipal and District Assemblies to ensure that they mainstreamed cases of mental illness into their Medium Term Development Programmes and partner actively with NGOs working in the area to help address the problem.
The Chief of Baare, Naab Nyakora Mantii, stated that the intervention of Basic Needs Ghana had contributed positively to improve the livelihoods of persons with mental disorders in the community and appealed to KOICA to support the NGO scale up the project to reach more people suffering mental disorders.

The Deputy Country Director of KOICA, Mr Seungmin Oh, indicated that Persons with mental illness deserved better attention and care and stressed the need for duty bearers and community members to ensure that they got access to basic needs such as food, shelter and medication.
“Remember it is through no fault of theirs that they are in this current state. They are our mothers, fathers and sisters and therefore we should not discriminate against them”, the Deputy Country Director stressed.
GNA

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