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05.03.2009 Education

NGO to support 12,000 children to enroll in schools

By Edmond Gyebi, Bupei - Ghanaian Chronicle

About 12,000 out-of-school children in some deprived districts of the three Northern Regions would be supported and enrolled into formal schools by 2010.

School for Life (SfL), a Tamale based International NGO in collaboration with the Danish Fund for International Development (DFID) has launched a new project dubbed “Literacy for Life Change” (LLC) to provide functional literacy education and skills to the out-of-school children.

School for Life is an umbrella body of the Ghana Developing Community Association (GDCA), a Ghana-Danish NGO based in Northern Region that aims at providing functional literacy education and skills to out-of-school children with emphasis on the girl-child.

The organization relies on their mother tongue language, functional teaching materials, flexible and suitable school calendar and voluntary commodity based facilitators to teach the children. In ensuring the success of the Literacy for Life Change Project, the DFID has allocated over One Million Pounds Sterling to assist School for Life.

The fund is to ensure the provision of learning materials, school uniforms and full fees paid for the beneficiary children through to tertiary level.

The beneficiary districts are Central Gonja in the Northern Region, Bawku West in the Upper West Region and Nadowli and Jirapa in the Upper West Region. Mr. Sulemana Osman Saaka, Programme Director for School for Life, says there are about 800,000 out-of-school children in the country with a greater number from the three Northern Regions, which called for measures to integrate them into schools as means of shaping their future.

Madam Yvonne Agbesi, Deputy Programme Manager of Human Development and Accountability Team of DFID called for the approval of the drafted Complementary Basic Education policy document prepared in 2007 by the authorities for implementation to offer the opportunities to the out-of-school children.

She however pledged DFID continues support for School for Life to step up its programmes to benefit more children in Ghana.

Mr. Joseph Kumah, Central Gonja District Director of Education expressed concern about the standard of education in Northern Region and Ghana as a whole.

He therefore appealed to all stakeholders, especially traditional authorities and parents to complement the efforts of School for Life and the government to promote quality education.