Promote, protect rights and dignity of persons with disabilities – Klaus Jahn

Access to public structures should not be a constraint for persons with disabilities to receive skills training and quality education, says Klaus Jahn, the President of Africa Action Deutschland, (aa/D).

He has, therefore, recommended that a comprehensive and integral national, institutional, district level and community level policy directives could promote and protect the rights and dignity of persons with disabilities.

He added that it will make a significant contribution to redressing the profound social exclusion of persons with disabilities and promote their participation in the civil, political, economic, social and cultural spheres with equal opportunities, in both developing and developed countries.

Mr. Klaus said this at a three-day take-off workshop at Prampram to discuss the implementation of the vision of aa/D and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Germany, on a project titled “Inclusive vocational training for physically handicapped and socially disadvantaged youth in southern Ghana.”

The workshop was organized by the Don Bosco Youth Network West Africa (DBYN), a youth and child-centered non-governmental organization in Ghana, with implementation centres in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Nigeria.

Participants were drawn from the Special Education Department of the University for Education, Winneba; Special Education Division, Accra; Africa Action, Germany; DBYN, National Vocational Training Institute (NVTI) Ghana and four selected beneficiary vocational training institutes in southern Ghana.

The project, which is being implemented in partnership with the DBYN, is being implemented by five different countries: India, Ecuador, South Africa, Burkina Faso and Ghana. Through DBYN, the main partner of aa/D, Ghana is the first partner to have started implementation.

In Ghana, the project is being implemented by the Baobab Children Foundation in the Central Region, New Century Career Training Centre in the Greater Accra Region, St. Mary’s Vocational Training Institute in the Eastern Region and in the Volta Region by the Evangelical Presbyterian Technical Vocational Technical Institute (EPVTI).

Mr. Klaus called on heads of the four beneficiary schools to use funds provided for the project to develop their infrastructure and make their schools open, easily accessible and disability friendly.

The Executive Director of DBYN, Bro. Günter Mayer and Chief Executive Officer of DBYN, David Ampomah Mensah expressed their appreciation to aa/D and BMZ, Germany, for the partnership and hoped that the existing working relationship would be sustained.

Mr. Mensah indicated that the project in the beneficiary schools should spark a wind of change and social inclusion for persons with disability in Ghana.

“All schools and learning environments, hospitals and clinics, corporate, market and institutional environments must be disability friendly—this is not an excess or superfluous to require special law enforcement. It is just the normal thing to do,” he maintained.

By Samuel Innocent

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