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02.12.2004 Education

NGOs organise HIV/AIDS education programme for pupils

By GNA

Awutu-Bontrase,(C/R) Nov. 30, GNA - More than 400 JSS children in Awutu Bontrase and Papaase areas of the Central Region, were on Monday offered intensive education on the causes of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. The programme organized by a group of NGO's including, Plan Ghana and Global Movement for children, formed part of the activities marking this year's World AIDS Day celebration which falls on Thursday, December 1.

The theme for the programme which was executed simultaneously by officials of organizing groups, was, "Join The Lesson For Life and take action for children affected by HIV/AIDS." Designed to involve children actively in the national fight against the pandemic, particularly in the rural communities, the event afforded the children the chance to express their views and gave useful suggestions to help curb the threats posed by the disease.

Addressing participants and teachers who attended the programme, Mrs Bernice Narty Quao, Health Education Officer of the Bawjiase programme area of Plan Ghana charged the children to re-alocate the programme by carrying the message to their parents, guardians, friends and other relations in their various towns and villages.

This, Mrs. Quao hoped would help reduce the spread of the disease in the rural areas.

She advised the children to avoid early sexual activities, no matter how great peer pressure urging them to yield to such demand would be.

Mrs. Quao told the children that it is true that the disease is dangerous and anyone who toy's with it would eventually die. She further charged school children and teachers as well as other adults to show compassion to all AIDS victims. According to Mrs. Quao, some of the children would be selected to participate in a special HIV/AIDS quiz to be held on the disease in Accra.

Professor Nyame said the College was in discussion with physicians from the Mayo Clinic; paediatricians from the University of Utah, both in the USA, and other medical specialist associations in Europe to further promote the Continuous Professional Development.

He said the College had also opened channels to the World Gastroenterology Organisation to get an advanced endoscopy (a kind of minor tubular surgery on the stomach through the throat) centre established in Ghana.

There are also indications of support for local postgraduate courses coming from development partners including UK Department for International Development, the Dutch Government, the United Nations Family Planning Agency and the International Organisation for Migration.

Professor Nyame said it was time to review the Ghana Health Service and Teaching Hospitals Act to bring harmony in the health system of Ghana. In a welcome address, Prof Samuel Ofosu-Amaah, President of the College, said the College was open for postgraduate courses to both Ghanaians and non-Ghanaians, and added that it was willing to pass on knowledge to improve health service delivery.

He later, in an interview, said emoluments were not the sole aim for the mass exodus of health professionals, but also other working conditions like the lack of equipment and qualified teams to work with. He called for the training of more support staff and the provision of equipment to entice young professionals to stay and work in the country.

Five hundred and sixty foundation members were admitted into the college after they took the admission of oath. 01 Dec 04

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