Health Service Workers Union (HSWU) of Trade Union Congress (TUC) in the Western and Western North Regions yesterday launched a welfare fund as part of its 13th annual week celebration held at Agona Nkwanta in the Ahanta West Municipality.
With the catch phrase ‘Save for the future’, the HSWU Fund would provide loans, help members to save towards pensions, and also support them with critical health services.
The event was on the theme ‘The role of unions in promoting socio-economic well-being of members in times of economic crises’.
In her address, the Regional Chairman of HSWU, Western and Western North, Mrs Irene Ama Biney, recalled that the union was formed about 57 years ago, but began celebrating the annual week in 2010 to highlight their activities and also engage in advocacy on the labour front.
She explained that each member would contribute GH₵50.00, which would be deducted from their salaries monthly, and the lump sum paid on retirement from the health service.
“Our main focus is on health, as we are working, along the line, a member may need some critical supports and the fund would be handy to resolve these challenges. Clearly, the fund would be needed in times of social and economic crisis,” Mr Biney told the meeting.
The Administrator, Kwesiminstim Hospital, Mr Osei Kesse, also applauded the HSWU for the boldness, foresight and the leadership in creating the fund to cushion members in times of economic crisis.
Globally, he noted, labour and societies were faced with crisis in many forms, and expressed the hope that the fund would serve as a tier-three pension for members, adding, “you must work together to make this initiative a success”.
In his address, the Western Regional Director of Health Services, Dr Yaw Ofori Yeboah, who launched the HSWU Fund, welcomed the initiative and encouraged members to be enrolled to make it effective.
He also inspired the Union to play a role that would promote socio-economic well-being of members.
Later, as part of their corporate social responsibility outreach programmes, Mrs Biney led the women’s committee to donate quantities of brown sugar and liquid soap to the Ahanta West Municipal Health Directorate.
FROM CLEMENT ADZEI BOYE, AGONA NKWANTA