Our latest updates coming from our local representative in Ghana witnesses the long road to recovery after the period of pandemics for the foster home in Kwamoso, in the District of Akuapem, in south-east of Ghana. Thanks to your support and to the help of a great number of volunteers and supporters, life at “Casa Italia” is returning to normal. Our local partner has to face new government decisions that not always are aimed to fully protect children.
New directions imposed to foster homes for children coming from serious situations of vulnerability and abuse consider boys and girls of 14 years old like adults. According to these new rules, these boys and girls have to leave foster homes and protected structures and have to find their place in the world if they cannot come back to their family (no matter what kind of family). In Ghana these rules are changing really fast and local actors – like our local partner – have to face them promptly: “Casa Italia” is a foster home that hosts minors generally till 12 years old, but there are some boys and girls that are about to turn 14. Some of them have a really serious disability and, although they are older in age, they are still not ready for an independent life. That’s why our local representative has to find a solution as soon as possible.
Moreover, not always there are the right conditions for the reinsertion in the biological family and often monitoring is completely lacking by the Social Welfare, without updates about the boy or the girl that comes back home. Currently in the center “Casa Italia” live two boys at risk because they are 14 years old and come from difficult a background.
In addition, the foster home has obtained the authorization to build two new buildings near the center. One little home is almost completely built: three rooms, one bathroom, one hall and one kitchen. These new structures will allow to the boys and girls that are more than 14 years old to live near the center, to stay near the community and to receive the right support till when they will work and will be independent.
Thanks to your support our local partner daily defends children’s rights and keeps on building a better future for all the minors hosted.
the general crisis in Ghana does not stop and with it protests and dissatisfaction are always more spread among the local population, whose purchasing power is always lower. In 2019 Ghana was one of the countries with the best economic performances of the area, able to return in advance the loan of the International Monetary Fund. After four years Ghana is the nation hit by the most overwhelming crisis: inflation has reached 40% and the value of Cedi, the local currency, has halved. The crisis has worsened also because of the Covid pandemic and more recently because of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. The prices of food and energy have strongly increased, affecting the poorest part of the population and the economic activities that depend on imports.
In this general social and economic situation, children are always the most exposed to rights violations. The Ghana Statistical Service (Gss) has published statistics regarding the involvement of children in economic activities a few days after the celebration of the World Day Against Child Labour (12 June). At national level more than 419.000 children aged between 5 and 17 years old are employed in economic activities according to the latest population census. Among them, 76.400 were aged between 5 and 9 years old, 153.000 between 10 and 14 years old and 189.600 between 15 and 17 years old. According to this statistic, the children involved work in average 29.2 hours a week and this average increases to 32.2 hours for teenagers between 15 and 17 years old. The greatest part of the children employed has never attended the school. Moreover, when children are street-connected, child abuse significantly rises.
It is clear that all children need a home of love, support and guidance by trusted adults, together with the possibility to receive good education and medical care. In this contest the activities promoted by our local referent at Casa Italia at Kwamoso are going on without a stop also during these last three months. Our Special Children’s Home hosts disable and non-disable children and provides every day education, rehabilitative care and a safe place where they can grow. This is all possible thanks to your fundamental help that allows the staff to follow the children according to all their needs.
At “Casa Italia” it’s time to take stock of what has happened during 2022 and which are the purposes for 2023. Our local partner Simona has shared the obstacles and difficulties faced during the last months, informing us also about all the progress reached that compensate for the efforts.
Some of the children hosted need constant medical assistance and a lot of time has been spent in hospital by the local staff in order to face their health emergencies. Each child has specific needs, has to be fed in a particular way and has to be medicated.
The rainy season has destroyed part of the roof and some walls of the structure that have been promptly repaired. The local staff frequently needs to buy orthopedic supports and wheelchairs.
Despite these difficulties, many are the successes reached and the lives changed. This is the case of Mawie: she was blind since when she was 6 years old and now – after 20 years – she had surgery in Italy and she can see. She has finished high school, she wants to become social worker and work for “Casa Italia”, which has been part of her life for 3 years. Grace was born with a serious hand’s malformation; she has been hidden for a lo o years and now she is proudly attending school. Joseph is Agostina’s son; they have both a disability and they lived in the street surviving thanks to occasional jobs. Now they live in “Casa Italia” and they have two rooms for their own. Jacob has finally come back to his family after 15 years.
The struggle remains, but it reminds us of all the goals reached and of all the purposes still to be reached. Together we can make a real difference in the life of a lot of children with disabilities and thanks to your help we can generate a great impact.
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