The International Cocoa Initiative (ICI) has handed over motorcycles and office equipment to four district assemblies under its Landscape and Referral Pilot Project to enhance the performance of its critical partners in Ghana’s cocoa sector.
The project is aimed at strengthening a functional collaboration and synergy between public and private sector actors working to eliminate child labour and other social protection-related issues in Ghana’s cocoa-producing communities.
Fostering interagency cooperation between industry, civil society, and government actors is hoped to ensure a more protective environment for children and to increase the effectiveness of interventions to combat child labour.
This project forms part of the broader commitment of ICI and its member to achieving Target 8.7 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which aims at eliminating all forms of child labour by 2025.
In Ghana, the Landscape and Referral Pilot Project is currently being implemented in two landscapes: Assin and Asunafo Landscapes.
Festus Kwadzokpo handed over the items to the Municipal Chief Executive of Assin Foso Municipality on behalf of the Country Director of ICI Mike Arthur. The items are meant for the Departments of Social Welfare and Community Development of the four districts within the two landscapes, namely Assin South, Assin North Districts, and Assin Foso and Asunafo North Municipal Assemblies.
The beneficiary districts received a brand-new Yamaha 125cc motorcycle each with one year’s comprehensive insurance.
Other items included one Dell desktop computer, one HP LaserJet Printer with additional toners, four arc files each, two boxes of Double A4 sheets, 5 Child Labour Awareness Toolkits, and 5 Child Labour Flexi Banners.
The motorcycles, office equipment and office supplies are intended to facilitate the work of the Department of Social Welfare and Community Development in implementing the project in these districts.
Festus Kwadzokpo, ICI Partnership and Capacity Strengthening Manager, who doubles as the National Project Coordinator averred that the Landscape and Referral Project also seeks to promote the involvement of local authorities and their partners to eliminate child labour and other social protection issues in the two landscapes.
He further intimated that the fight against child labour is a collaborative and cooperative one, therefore, all hands are needed to win the war against this menace which seeks to jeopardise the future of the children of this country.
He highlighted that, with the Department of Social Welfare and Community Development as a major referral point in the child labour eradication process, it was wise to equip them with these items to facilitate their work in eradicating child labour.
The Assin Foso Director of Municipal Social Welfare and Community Development, Eric Angus Amoah, on behalf of the other districts expressed gratitude to ICI, noting that the items would help make the Departments’ work easier and promised to maintain them for continuous use.
The Municipal Chief Executive of Assin Central, Nicholas Fiifi Baako, stated that the presentation was timely and will contribute immensely to helping the districts.
He added, “We are in dire need of these items, and we are very grateful to ICI for coming to our aid at this point in time. We assure you that it will be used for the purpose for which you present it to us.”
As mandated to end all activities of child labour, ICI continues to strengthen its collaborative efforts with all actors which comprise public social protection service providers, public and private cocoa companies, NGOs, farmer-based organizations, and other government services to pool resources to tackle child labour and improve child protection in its operational areas.
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