THE Anglican Diocesan Development and Relief Organisation (ADDRO) of the Tamale Diocese of the Anglican Church, has initiated a ¢2.1 billion malaria prevention and control programme to help reduce malaria related deaths among children and pregnant mothers.
The programme dubbed: Integrated Community Based Health Programme (ICBHP) and funded by the Episcopal Relief and Development (ERD) in the USA, would cover the Kariga district in the Northern Region, Bawku West and Talensi-Nabdam districts in the Upper East Region and Nadowli in the Upper West Region.
Under it, 12,000 insecticide treated bednets have been procured for distribution to children under five years, pregnant mothers and the vulnerable in the programme operational areas.
The Very Reverend Dr. Jacob Ayeebo of the Tamale Diocese of the Anglican Church and Executive Director of ADDRO, announced this during the district launch of the programme here on Thursday.
Rev. Ayeebo said the programme, if successful, would be extended to cover more districts and communities to help bring malaria which is number one killer disease in the country to the barest minimum.
He said six communities in the Nadowli district Takpo, Gyinbale, Chang, Kanyini, Jampiena and Duong would be covered under the programme.
The Executive Director said that in order to reach out to the target group and to ensure effective implementation of the programme, community volunteers have been recruited, trained and provided with bicycles to facilitate their movement in the distribution of benefits to the target groups.
He said ADDRO would work closely with district assemblies, traditional rulers, personnel of the Ghana Health Service and others to make the execution of the programme a reality.
Reverend Ayeebo said the church was committed to the holistic development of its followers and would pursue policies and programmes that would meet the spiritual and social aspirations of the people.
Other interventions initiated by the church to improve the lives of the people, he said, were in the area of food security, support for women groups to improve their income-generation activities and the rehabilitation and support for persons with disabilities to live dignified and self-supporting lives to contribute their quota to the national development effort.
The Diocesan Health Co-ordinator, Raymond Gookah said ICBHP seeks to fight malaria through control and preventive measures such as health education and promotion.
Mr Gookah said communicating health promotion messages such as seeking early treatment and clearing the environment of bushes and stagnant waters that facilitates the breeding of mosquitoes would be a topmost priority of the programme.
The Parish Priest of the Wa Anglican Church, Rev. Canon Moses Bamungwiiri, said the church would not relent in its efforts at providing the people with education and health which were most vital for the socio-economic advancement of the country.
The District Chief Executive for Nadowli, Wing Commander Eric Dakurah (rtd), in a speech read for him pledged the assembly's commitment and support for the programme to help reduce malaria cases in the district.
"Let us all demonstrate commitment to the noble course of ADDRO in making the district a malaria free one for others to emulate for the betterment of the entire country," Wing Commander Dakurah tasked assembly members.