A Social Policy Specialist at the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Mr Charles Dzradosi, has urged the government to ensure all national development policies are packaged in a coherent manner, to address specific needs of children.
He explained that children were the future leaders of the country, at such, there was the need for the government to channel a bigger portion of its investments in addressing children’s issues, particularly in areas of education and health.
Mr Dzradosi made the call yesterday in Accra, at the ‘Children in all Policies by 2030’ (CAP 2030) stakeholders’ conference, which sought to advocate issues of children in all policies.
The conference brought together about 100 participants in government, non-governmental and civil organisation organisations and the media, from across the country to brainstorm on how to enhance welfare and meeting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Mr Dzradosi noted that among the priority areas the government needed to ensure the safety of children, was how it could reduce maternal deaths since children’s development began from pregnancy.
He added that the government needed to provide support through quality healthcare for mothers to get the best of care during delivery, while appealing forproper infrastructural facilities, and teaching materials to help children access quality education.
The Acting Director of the Department of Children at the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Florence Ayisi Quartey, assured participants of the ministry’s continuous commitment in working with other ministries, departments and agencies and NGOs to address the needs of children.
“We will also ensure that we take children’s inputs, concerns and hopes into account to determine those needs, it is in this direction that laws and policies such as Children’s Act, Human Trafficking Act, Domestic Violence Act, Persons with Disability Act, Criminal Amendment Code and other Offences Act, Juvenile Justice Act, National Gender Policy amongst others have all been put in place.
“Issues such as immunisation, nutrition, and early childhood education amongst others are critical to early childhood development which needs integration into all policies, especially those related to the SDGs.
“It is through partnerships that we can find ways and means to oblige the government and other stakeholders to integrate early childhood development planning across sectors,” Madam Quartey said.
BY BERNARD BENGHAN