The Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development and Caritas Internationalis COVID-19 Response Funds at the Vatican, has awarded 99,785.56 euros grant to Caritas Ghana for interventions on COVID-19 in Ghana.
The implementation of the intervention which would span over a three-month period would focus on the Catholic Archdioceses of Accra, Cape Coast, Tamale and Kumasi.
Mr Samuel Zan Akologo, Executive Secretary of Caritas Ghana who disclosed this in a Zoom Webinar Conference, ( a virtual ceremony), said about 2,570 individuals are expected to benefit from the grant project.
Caritas Ghana is the relief and development organisation of the Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference (GCBC).
Participating in the virtual event were Dr Aloysius John, Secretary General of Caritas Internationalis, Monsignor Pierre Cibamo, Vatican Ecclesiastical Liaison to Caritas Internationalis, the Most Reverend Philip Naameh, President of the GCBC and Archbishop of Tamale; Most Reverend Gabriel Justice Anokye, Archbishop of Kumasi and President of Caritas Africa.
The rest included Most Reverend Joseph Osei-Bonsu, Episcopal President of Caritas Ghana and Very Reverend Father Lazarus Anondee, Secretary General of the National Catholic Secretariat (NCS).
Also participating were the Development Officers from the target project focus dioceses, Staff of Caritas Ghana, DEPSOCOM, The Catholic Standard Newspaper and Newswatchgh.com, a faith based news portal.
In a solidarity message, Dr Aloysius John on behalf of the managers of the Grant, congratulated Caritas Ghana and the Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference for all their progressive interventions during the outbreak of this pandemic
He, however, noted that it was necessary that all join hands in solidarity to effectively fight COVID-19 by protecting and providing for the vulnerable in our society.
He admonished the team to support the effort to ensure that everything meant for the vulnerable was used appropriately.
Citing an example, he said “800 young girls known as ‘Kayayie who were affected and displaced through the government demolition of illegal structures, including 200 People Living with Disabilities to be provided with food items.
According to him, 800 displaced women and their children would be provided with blankets and mats while 100 Caritas Ghana Staff, Arch Diocesan Caritas Officers and National Catholic Secretariat Staff would have virtual training on Safeguarding Procedures and Mechanisms.
About 800 workers of health facilities in the remote areas of the four Archdioceses, he said, would be provided with face masks and other Personal Protective Equipment (sanitizers, veronica buckets and liquid soap).
Mr Zan Akologo explained that there would be media sensitization, dissemination of information on behavioral change measures, while religious and traditional leaders, Parish priests, opinion leaders, faith-based organisations in the four Archdioceses, National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), among others.
Touching on the overall objective of the project, the Caritas Ghana Executive Secretary said that it would guarantee access to basic livelihood security services (food, shelter, medicine) for the poor and vulnerable.
BY NORMAN COOPER