The Ghana International Women’s Club, the Children’s Heart Foundation, Infanta Malaria and the India Women’s Association have come together to raise funds through an 8-km health walk.
Dubbed United for Charity, the walk which took place last Saturday, begun from the Labadi Beach Hotel in Accra and proceeded through several principal streets in the La enclave and ended at the Labadi Beach Hotel.
Speaking to the media, President of the Ghana International Women’s Club (GIWC) and the Children’s Heart Foundation, Jacqueline Ahomka-Lindsay noted that the purpose of coming together is to realise that there are lots of women clubs around the country involved in issues concerning women and children.
“Last year we felt that we can all come together to push forward the agenda for women and children. GIWC is raising awareness for survival cancer. We started off with a conference last year.
Most of these clubs have been established for over 38 years and every year they come together and they do their own little things in their own little corner to support the cause for women and children. If Australia has been declared as a cervical cancer free then it means there is hope for Ghana if we keep pushing,” she said.
The GIWC has purchased a $105,000 diagnostic cervical cancer equipment expected to arrive in the country today and to be commissioned next week. The equipment is the only one in the country at the moment to serve the whole nation.
According to Jacqueline: “There is a general sense of being responsible and also knowing that even in your own little way you can make a difference. Government can do as much as they can but sometimes they do get overwhelmed and therefore we all need to come on board to support the cause.”
Speaking on behalf of the Gender Ministry, Programmes Officer of the Department of Children, Salifu Anatu stated that one of the utmost priorities of the Ministry is the well-being of women, children and the vulnerable in the society.
She said: “we know government is supposed to provide but government cannot do everything so when we find civil societies, organisations, partners and donors coming on board we feel very grateful because they’ve gone a long way to save us some cost and we are only pleading that when the machine comes they carry on with the maintenance to keep it working.
She admonished more civil societies, organisations and individuals to come on board so that more of the cervical cancer equipment will be purchased for other regions as well. This she said will prevent long hours of travelling to Korle-bu in for access and treatment.
In an interview, Vanisha Daryanani from the Indian Women Association noted that the cause they’re supporting is on breast cancer and it has been very dear to them. According to her, they’ve been supporting for over nine years now and this is the second time they partook in the united for charity campaign.
“We are very happy to raise a lot of funds for our cause, which is breast cancer. Through this event, the funds we raise will be used for creating awareness because first step for curing is to know about the disease itself. We want to do it in the rural areas.
We want to empower them so that they can go to the hospitals when they see the symptoms because most of the time they do not know what exactly it is. They usually think it is a boil. So all we are trying to tell them is it is just a disease that can be cured.”
Currently, the Indian Women Association is supporting five patients in Korle-Bu through chemotherapy. One person so far has been completely cured of breast cancer.
Trustee for the Children’s Heart Foundation, Karen Hendrickson, described the event as phenomenal. She took the opportunity to thank everyone that came out to support the cause.
This year marked the second edition of the United for Charity campaign. The groups have over the years stayed committed to improving the lives of women, children across Ghana.
Some of the projects they have been undertaking include, lifesaving open heart surgery, prevention of malaria, providing free screening and treatment for breast cancer, to community projects such as boreholes, schools and shelters.
The five charity clubs however called on individuals and corporate organization to join them walk an extra mile to raise funds.