Women of Love Ministry, a non-governmental organization that aims to empower women to be entrepreneurs, has supported two women with some equipment to start working to earn a living.
Ms Rebecca Agama, a seamstress and a mother of a child with cerebral palsy was supported with a sewing machine. Rosemary Ladzi, another mother, was supported with a poly-tank to enable her to sell water in her community.
Other mothers with cerebral palsy children were all given a bag of rice and a bottle of oil each as a token of support.
Mrs Gloria Yeboah Botwe, Director of the Women of Love Ministry speaking at the ceremony in Dodowa, said children with cerebral palsy are also a gift from God:
“Your children have the spirit of God in them, they are also created in the image of God, do not look down on your children or belittle yourselves, you will be amazed if God revealed His purpose for your children to you’
Mrs Yeboah-Botwe said her organization is ready to train mothers of children with cerebral palsy in various vocational areas for free and also to help them with startup capital to enable them to earn a living and be able to take good care of their children.
The mothers used the opportunity to share their challenges but also expressed their appreciation to Women of Love for the kind gesture and urged other organizations to follow by example.
Ms Rosemary Ladzi, a mother of a child with cerebral palsy recounted how the sheer despair of the situation had led her to try and commit suicide by poisoning herself but said she was today thankful she did not die.
Ms Agama said her association with other mothers, supported by the international organisation CBM, has been very helpful.
“Even though I have had challenges even with sending my child to school, CBM’s project has been my biggest source of encouragement to keep me going,” she said
CBM, in collaboration with the International Centre for Evidence in Disability at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and the University of Ghana (UG) have also recently embarked on research to evaluate the impact of a community–based parent training program for children with cerebral palsy in Ghana.
The project being implemented through the health Directorate of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana brings together groups of 10-15 parents of children with cerebral palsy to provide training.
Mrs Jedidiah Abanga, Official of the Presbyterian Church Health directorate explained that the project aims to increase knowledge and skills in caring for a child with cerebral palsy. It promotes a participatory learning approach with an emphasis on the empowerment of parents and caregivers, she added
Mr Anthony Adaboe, a Special Needs Educator and leader of one of such groups in Dodowa, said many of the mothers have expressed enormous benefits since the start of the project.
As part of the project, a group of health professionals including physiotherapists, nutritionists, pediatricians and other health officials visit the mothers at home periodically alongside holding monthly meetings aimed at helping to teach the group.
The project among other objectives is also exploring ways in which caregivers can be empowered and how it impacts upon the care of their child.