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March 13, 2003

Japanese Government assists three communities

From: GhanaWeb, Ghana - 13 Mar 2003

The Japanese Ambassador, Mrs Kazuko Asai, on Wednesday expressed regret that though education was a fundamental right of all children, society's attitude towards the education of disabled children was "not very encouraging".

Mrs Asai said society's attitude and the many socio-cultural barriers were among the greatest impediments to handicapped children's access to education. The Ambassador expressed the sentiments when she signed three grants contracts to the tune of $67, 614 which is about ¢568 million with three communities in the Northern and Upper East Regions for the construction of students hostels and a clinic, respectively.

The beneficiary organisations were the Gowrie Secondary /Technical School in Upper East that received $34,690 to construct a boys' hostel for the school, the Savelugu School for the Deaf, that also received $12,911 to construct a dormitory for the students and the Presbyterian Primary Health Care in the Salaga District in the Northern region that received $9,013 for the construction of a clinic at Kuwani, near Salaga.

Ambassador Asai and Didacus Afegra, Headmaster of Gowrie School, Mohamed Abdul Samed Guna, Board Chairman of Kuga-Fong Mansongsem Community Association, representing the School for the Deaf and Ms Marleen van Asselt, Project Co-ordinator of the Presbyterian Health Care signed the contracts for the grants at the Embassy in Accra.

Mrs Asai said the Embassy received more 500 applications every year requiring urgent attention under the Japanese Grants Assistance for Grassroots Projects Scheme (GGP), which was introduced some 12 years ago.

She explained that the Scheme was introduced to encourage self-help activities initiated by rural folks to undertake projects in and around their communities to complement efforts by the government to develop deprived areas of the country.

Mrs Asai said the Scheme had lived up to expectation because of the various assistances that it had given out. The various representatives thanked the Embassy and the Japanese governments for the assistance and efforts at ensuring that the country's education and the general development through the provision of infrastructure in deprived communities were moved forward.

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