Engagement With Faith Based Organizations In The Delivery Of Social Protection In Ghana
June 25, 2018 8:25 am
The Social Protection Directorate under the auspices of the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection has held a one-day engagement with Religious Leaders and Traditional Rulers on the key roles they play in the effective and efficient implementation of Social Protection (SP) strategies in Ghana.
The Workshop being the second of its kind brought together various Faith-Based Organisations (FBOs) to help create awareness, stimulate a constructive dialogue and an effective collaboration to enhance the effective enforcement of the Social Protection Policy on all levels of our society.
Addressing participants, the Minister for Gender children and Social Protection, Hon. Otiko Afisah Djaba said that Social Protection has been identified as a strategic and reliable tool for addressing poverty, vulnerability and exclusion. Therefore, according to the Minister, it was very important that stakeholders especially FBOs forge their efforts together and collaborate to address the numerous challenges the vulnerable in Ghana are facing in a more meaningful way.
“Our appreciation to faith-based organizations is endless because they have led the fight to protect the vulnerable and extreme poor in Ghana long before we have asked, but like Oliver Twist, we have to ask for more. Maximum efforts are needed so that no one is left behind. For as long as there’s even one vulnerable person, then our work is not done”, she added.
Hon. Otiko Djaba noted that the objective for the workshop was to mainstream social protection strategies through the Faith based organizations and also develop a plan of action for FBOs to use their various religious platforms as a conduit for a more pragmatic and action-oriented approach for the delivery of social protection in Ghana, so that no one is excluded.
The Honourable Minister stated that there has always been a huge gap between the policies in Ghana and their implementation due to the fact that government on its own may not be able to attend to the all the people in need, so the need has arisen for us to formalize the work that you do, so there can be proper dissemination at all levels of our society.
Present at the dialogue, the Director for the Social Protection Directorate, Dr Rita Owusu Amankwah, also noted that Ghanaians were highly religious and their leaders were the first point of call in time of any difficulty, therefore making it more reasonable to employ the efforts of these religious leaders in achieving the mission of addressing the needs of the vulnerable.
Hon. Otiko Djaba appealed to FBOs to support the Helpline of Hope Call Centre established by her ministry and complement efforts of representing the VOICE OF THE VOICELESS.
The Minister also urged them to submit their inputs to the Ministry for the draft of the Social Protection Bill which seeks to gain provide legal backing to protect the rights of the vulnerable; guide operations and delivery of SP programmes; as well as secure dedicated funding of social protection.
“We need to progress from the talk, it’s now time for action” – Hon. Otiko Afisah Djaba.