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Education | May 17, 2014

Communities in northern Ghana get SADA schools

Sixteen basic schools have been constructed and 22 rehabilitated in the northern part of Ghana under the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority Millennium Villages Project (SADA MVP) since 2012.

Under the project, five new health centres have also been built and four rehabilitated and expanded within the same period.

The Team Leader of the MVP, Mr David Jesining Sumbo, disclosed this when he took journalists on a tour of some facilities under the SADA MVP in northern Ghana yesterday.

  What is SADA MVP?
The SADA MVP is a synergic development model focusing on addressing the inherently integrated challenges of rural development, such as food production, nutrition, education, health services, roads, energy, communication, water and sanitation, enterprise diversification, environmental management and business development.

It was started in 2012 and is being implemented in 35 contiguous communities within the West Mamprusi and Mamprusi Moaduri districts in the Northern Region and the Builsa South District in the Upper East Region.

The project, being funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), is a collaboration between the Government of Ghana, through SADA, and the Millennium Promise Alliance.

Since July 2012, $6.8 million has been spent.
  Tour and projects
During the tour, which took journalists to project sites at Nabari, Duu, Kpasenkpe, Kasiesa, Wiesi, Zamsa, Kunkua and other communities in the Upper East and the Northern regions, Mr Sumbo said 2,000 dual desks had been provided for basic schools in the area of operation and scholarships awarded to 22 girls in various senior high schools.

He added that a six-unit living quarters for teachers had been provided and many pupil teachers taken through training on the Ghana Education Service (GES) curriculum to make them effective.

According to him, the MVP was currently paying the salaries of 60 pupil teachers to motivate them to do their best, adding that as a result of the measures put in place, basic school enrolment in the areas had increased by 18 per cent.

  Health, water and sanitation and road construction

In the area of health, it became apparent during the tour that the MVP had, apart from constructing new health centres, equipped the centres with tools and laboratories.

Mr Sumbo said the MVP had recruited retired midwives, community health nurses and enrolled nurses to address the health needs of residents of the communities in which the health centres were sited.

With regard to interventions in the area of water and sanitation, the Community Mobilisation and Institutions Co-ordinator of the MVP, Mr Edwin N. Batir, said 43 existing water pumps had been rehabilitated, while a contract had been awarded for the drilling of 29 new boreholes.

Currently, he said, small town water systems were being developed at Uwasi and Kunkua.

Toilet facilities, according to him, had been provided in many of the communities, a situation which had increased access to toilet facilities from six to 46 per cent.

In the area of road construction, Mr Batir said 60 kilometres of road had been graded and 22 culverts constructed.

"What we are waiting for now is for the government to tar those roads," he said.

On agriculture, he said 2,338 farmers had been provided with seeds and fertilisers.

  Communities express joy
Some residents of the communities where the projects are sited expressed gratitude to the MVP for undertaking the projects.

Maame Nyaaba, a resident of Duu in the West Mamprusi District, where a health centre is sited, said the facility had been of immense help to the community, especially women.

Prior to the establishment of the facility, she said, maternal mortality was high, and indicated that some women died on the way when they were being conveyed on bicycles to Walewale, which had the nearest health centre and was about 30 kilometres away, to give birth.

"But now with the health centre, the deliveries are done here and no woman has lost her life. The midwife and other health personnel here take very good care of us. We are grateful," she said.

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