Turkish Ambassador donate to shelter for ‘kayayie’ girls in Kumasi

The Turkish Ambassador to Ghana, Her Excellency, Nesrin Bayazıt, has supported the Kemal Ataturk Centre for ‘Kayayies,’ in Kumasi, with five boxes of new clothes to cater for several young women and girls, who are sheltered at the Centre.

In addition to the clothes, the Ambassador also financed the cost of surgery of a young mother at the Centre, who was diagnosed of having a lump in her breast, by a team of medical personnel from the Peace and Love Hospital.

Ambassador Bayazıt, who visited the Centre a day after accompanying a business delegation from Turkey to the Manhyia Palace, said she has always been moved by the plight of the ‘kayayie’ girls, head potters, most of whom travel from the three northern regions to seek greener pastures in southern parts of the country. 

She reckoned that the quest of most of these young girls is often to fulfill their aspirations hence traveling several kilometers to other places in the country to engage in this trade, which often puts them in danger.

She urged them to be focused, avoid child marriage, which has become a major global concern, while also encouraging them to work towards achieving their dreams, in future.

The Turkish Ambassador cited the life story of Mrs. Janet Abobigu, who was once a head-potter but now the Chief Executive of Uni-Jay Company Limited and Founder of Amaleboba Foundation, because she worked on her dreams.

She lauded the work of the Kemal Ataturk Centre and the President of Breast Care International and the Chief Executive Officer of Peace and Love Hospital, Dr. Beatrice Wiafe Addae, who teams up with the Centre to screen the girls.

The Kamel Ataturk Centre, which has been running for close to a year, located in the heart of trade of the Central Market, serves as a clinic, an abuse report center as well as handling data collection on young women and girls from the North who are trafficked to parts of the country and beyond.

According to the Project Coordinator, Alhassa Abdallah Musah, they work to provide some level of comfort for the ‘kayayie girls’ by giving them a place to washdown and changing rooms.

Additionally, the Centre also provide them with medical care, through the work of the Peace and Love Hospital who visit the shelter to undertake free medical screening.

He explained that the Centre collaborates with the Anti-Human Trafficking Unit, of the Ghana Police Service, to monitor and arrest those behind the trafficking of young women and girls from the North to other parts of the country and beyond.

Mr. Abdallah Musah noted that despite the Centre being a temporary shelter they are working on to getting a permanent place to accommodate the girls who use the facility.

Mrs. Janet Abobigu, who accompanied the Ambassador together with Mr. Nuru-Den Abubakar Ali, of Zabac Ghana, to the Centre also pledged support all the young women and girls at the shelter who were willing to pursue their education.

She said Company is prepaid to employ the willing ones and train them in various aspects of dressmaking business, in order that they can make a decent living from their earnings. 

She encouraged them not to see what they do as an end but rather a means to a better future while reiterating the call to avoid early marriage, which she said can kill their dreams.

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