Upper East Region gets International Hope Centre for Women
Bolgatanga, June 7, GNA - The International Hope Centre for Women (IHCW), an NGO, has been launched in the Upper East Region, to help curb the spate of teenage pregnancies and abortions in the area.
The region recorded 5,587 teenage pregnancies, most of them being school girls, from 10 to 19 years old from 2015 to 2016.
Speaking at the launch of the Centre in Bolgatanga, the Founder of the IHCW, Ms Gladys Adochim said the aim of the NGO was to care for the well-being and education of women and girls particularly those experiencing unplanned pregnancies through health education and support services.
She said apart from the emotional, psychological and physical trauma most victims of teenage pregnancies and abortions often went through, some had attempted committing suicide and getting involved in drug abuse.
The Founder expressed worry about the non-existence of a Pregnancy Crisis Centre in the Northern, Upper East and Upper West regions and said IHCW had come up with such a facility, offering free Pregnancy testing, peer couching, mentorship programme, vocational skills training and economic empowerment programmes.
It would also establish a maternity home where victims of teenage pregnancies and abortion who had been shunned by their parents and society could seek refuge.
Ms Adochim explained that her experience as somebody who gave birth out of wedlock in the United States informed her decision to establish the Centre.
She called on the old and experienced women in the Region to support the Centre and mentor the young ones to avoid falling prey to men.
'We must all also endeavour to encourage and support pregnant girls to continue their education as done in the United States,' she said.
Ms Gladys Akapore , the Director of the Centre, said the organisation would not only become a beacon of hope for females facing unplanned pregnancies, but would also help them to develop into women of grace, self- respecting and honored members of the society.
The organisation, she noted, would also extend its services to rural areas providing medical screening and making referrals to healthcare facilities.
Inaugurating the Board Members, Mrs Rosemond Anaba of the Fountain Gate Chapel, blamed the plight of the young girls partly to peer pressure and the influence of the media.
She recounted the story of a girl, now a medical doctor whose mother refused to terminate her pregnancy when forced by the ex-boyfriend to do so.
Mrs Akapore noted that IHCW would help in reducing the disturbing statics of teenage pregnancies in the Region as well as save a lot of babies.
Pastor Samuel Gyemfie, Pastor of Fountain Gate Chapel, in a sermon, admonished men to be friends and show respect to females, explaining that 'this will help dissuade you from abusing them sexually'.
By Samuel Akapule, GNA