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05.09.2005 Health

Workshop on HIV/AIDS for CBOs opens at Nkoranza


Nkoranza (B/A), Sept. 5, GNA - A four-day Community Capacity Enhancement (CCE) Workshop on the HIV/AIDS pandemic has been organized for 20 selected community leaders of some identifiable organizations and groups from the Nkoranza South Constituency at Nkoranza. It was organised by Action Together, a Christian Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) based at Techiman in Brong-Ahafo in collaboration with the Nkoranza District Assembly.

The participants were drawn from Community-based Organizations (CBOs), the Ghana Health Service (GHS), Ghana Education Service (GES) and the Department of Community Development and Social Welfare. Reverend Antwi Bekoe of the World Miracle Church in Kumasi, who was the leader of the facilitators, explained that the workshop was to strengthen capacities within individuals and communities in the area to better understand the nature of the pandemic to reflect and initiate changes to respond to it effectively.

Rev. Bekoe said the participants were therefore to serve as facilitators in the local communities and provide care, attention and support to people living with the disease, so as to check its spread in the communities.

Rev. Bekoe expressed grave concern about how the nation's social and cultural practices, as well as some values, beliefs and norms were helping in the spread of the pandemic and stressed that, since everybody was at risk of contracting the disease, every individual should join in the campaign against its spread.

Mr James Kwabena Appiah-Awuah, District Chief Executive (DCE) for Nkoranza commended Action Together for showing concern for the health and life of the people of Nkoranza and urged the participants to take serious view of the workshop to be able and effectively assist in carrying out massive campaigns, the communities as would-be facilitators to promote the health of the people while enhancing the development of the communities.

The DCE pleaded with the youth to be very cautious of their lives and guard against pre-marital and illicit sexual practices to avoid contracting the disease.

Mr Solomon Obeng Danquah, District HIV/AIDS Focal Person announced that a similar workshop would be organized at the Nkoranza North constituency at a date to be announced later.

Mr Danquah stressed the need for people not to point accusing fingers on HIV/AIDS victims, as the practice demoralizes them, adding that, the practice also could let others living with the disease to hide and spread it to others by way of offering themselves for casual sex. Mrs. Eva Agbodo Saku, a nurse at the Nkoranza health Center disclosed that statistics from the Nkoranza Saint Theresa's Hospital revealed that between the years 2000 and 2004, about 748 cases of the disease were recorded at the hospital.

Mrs. Saku therefore, urged the participants not to relent in their efforts but work hard for the people to change from their negative sexual practices. 05 Sept. 05