The authorities of the Senior Correctional Centre in Accra on Sunday appealed to the public to aid them to functionally resource their academic and vocational facilities towards the proper training of the inmates for their smooth re-integration into society.
A Deputy Director of Prisons (DDP) Leopold Kwame Amoah Ansah, who made the appeal, explained that a classroom block alongside textbooks, exercise books, marker boards and other logistics for teaching and learning were needed for their basic school, which prepares those who write the Basic Education Certificate Examination.
Additionally, resources and materials were needed for those who under-go skills training at the auto mechanic, electrical, shoe-making, carpentry, masonry, tailoring, ceramics and draughtmanship shops. There is also an agricultural unit to train farmers.
DDP Ansah told journalists in an interview during a partnership visit of members of the Campus Christian Fellowship of the Ghana Institute of Journalism and the Osei-Kusi Foundation (OKF), a pro-youth empowerment and mentoring foundation, to the Centre.
The visitors had fellowship with the inmates and donated assorted food items, drinks, water and toiletries to them.
DDP Ansah said the correctional centre, which houses about 100 inmates, also needed a science laboratory, a sports complex to give the children some recreation, and television sets with character building and inspirational audio-visual materials.
In spite of the resource constraint, the officer in charge of the Centre said they were doing well in bringing out the best in the children, pointing out that, all the children presented for this year’s BECE passed well and had been placed in reputable senior secondary schools.
“We need scholarships for these children to aspire to their highest in their educational endeavours,” DDP Ansah appealed.
The Centre also won an award at the district level for its farming activities last Friday’s National Farmers’ Day Celebration.
Pastor Kofi Osei-Kusi, Executive President of OKF, encouraged the inmates to consider the Centre as a transformational channel for becoming better people who would impact society as leaders in their chosen fields.
He commended the authorities for the sacrifices they were making to shape the lives of the children.
Pastor Osei-Kusi said his foundation was committed to supporting young people to maximize their potentials, and would continually make its services available to the inmates.
The GIJ team, on learning about the water crisis that had hit the Centre, paid for the provision of two tanks of water, and pledged to mobilize more resources to improve the services offered by the Centre.
The Senior Correctional Centre, formerly named the Accra Borstal Institute, was established in 1947, to mould the lives of children between the ages of 17 and 20 who have been convicted of criminal or civil offences for re-integration into society.
The inmates spend a period of between three months and three years depending on their sentencing terms.