Quality Education, Key To Dignified Life
| Updated Oct 17, 2017 at 3:57am
Reproduction is one of the main characteristics of living things.
For humans, children are seen as the best gift from God.
However, in some homes, the joy that comes with child birth fades away faster than the speed of light.
In those instances, children are seen as a burden rather than a blessing.
This has led to the neglect of thousands of children all over the country.
Many of those children are not able to attend school or they drop out early, they go hungry, have no shelter, no quality health.
In this special report, Bubu Klinogo found out that quality education is key to ending poverty and hunger and ensuring dignity and equality for all people living everywhere as envisaged in the Sustainable Development Goals.
Poverty and other factors have forced thousands of children to drop out of school.
The worst affected are girls.
They are forced into prostitution, early marriage, and menial and hazardous occupations.
Their male counterparts are mostly found in cocoa farms, fishing vessels and illegal mining pits.
According to the Ghana Living Standards Survey round 6 conducted between 2012 and 2013, the poverty levels are more pronounced in rural savannah areas.
As a result, there is a drift towards the urban areas.
That is the case of Dzifa from the Volta Region, Abigail from the Central Region and Francis from the Upper East region.
These teenagers have all dropped out of school due to financial constraints and have also migrated from their regions to the national capital.
Dzifa is 17 years and is from the Volta Region.
She was forced out of school because the father abandoned the mother.
The mother has to take care of her and her elder sister.
As a result she opted out of school to sell pure water for the past seven years to assist the mother to take care of her sister.
Her dream is to become a military officer.
Abigail is from Gomoa Denkyira in the Eastern Region.
She has also been selling pure water on the streets of Accra for more than 5 years.
Her dream is to become a medical doctor.
Francis is15 years and from Bolgatanga in the Upper East region.
He was brought to Accra about two months ago by the brother.
He is unable to continue his education.
He has therefore gone into selling yoghurt in Accra.
He had wanted to become a teacher.
There are thousands others of their kind in the cocoa farms, in the fishing vessels and the mining pits. How can their lives be turned around?
The Head of International Child Development Program in Ghana, Joyce Larnyo, has some answers.
She said education must be made absolutely free and compulsory and efforts should be made to get every child back into the classroom.
The first SDG report launched by the UN Secretary General in July this year gave indications as to how to quickly achieve the SDGs.
UN Resident Coordinator in Ghana, Christine Evans-Klock disclosed that the report called for targeting of the people for special attention.
Government is building more schools to expand access. It has also introduced free education at the basic level and partially at the secondary level.
There is also school feeding in selected basic schools, free school uniforms, exercise books, sandals and many more.
Despite these interventions, people like Dzifa and Abigail who have big dreams are still on the streets and as the days go by, their dreams fade away.
This report was compiled with support from the Media Foundation for West Africa and UNDP.