About 174,000 cocoa farmers in 450 cocoa-growing communities in Ghana have received Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) worth GH¢454,000.
The items, procured by the Mondelez International in partnership with Child Rights International (CRI), are meant to assist cocoa farmers in their fight against the deadly respiratory disease.
The items were handed over to COCOBOD and subsequently delivered to the farmers at a ceremony held in Accra on Tuesday. The items include: thermometer guns to check the temperature of people; a public address system to roll out public education on the coronavirus pandemic; modernised handwashing machines, nose masks, soaps and sanitisers.
Speaking at the presentation ceremony, the Country Director of Mondelez International Cocoa Life Programme, Mrs. Yaa Peprah Amekudzi, said the organisation is determined to contribute its quota in the fight against spread of coronavirus.
She said some of the items are meant to directly help cocoa farmers adhere to precautionary measures, while the remaining items will be given to hospitals or clinics within cocoa-growing communities.
Recognising the role cocoa farmers play in Ghana’s economic development, Mrs. Amekudzi, said Mondelez International and Child Rights International thought it wise to extend a helping hand to cocoa farmers.
She therefore appealed for cocoa farmers to adhere to the various precautionary measures in order to avoid infection.
The Executive Director of CRI, Mr. Bright Appiah, said apart from the PPEs presented to cocoa farmers, more measures are being rolled out to ensure the effects of coronavirus are minimised.
He particularly mentioned that CRI will soon roll out an e-learning programme for children of cocoa farmers, to ensure their time at home becomes productive.
The e-learning project will be tailored to suit specific needs of the children, based on the data available to CRI regarding children within those communities.
Mr. Appiah said one of the major concerns of CRI is the safety and wellbeing of children, and that the organisation will stop at nothing in ensuring that nothing untoward happens to them.
The Deputy Chief Executive Director in-charge of Operations at COCOBOD, Dr. Emmanuel Opoku, commended Mondelez International and Child Rights International for the gesture.
He also applauded them for their various roles in helping enhance operations of cocoa farmers in the country.
Mr. Opoku stressed the need for people to adhere to basic precautionary measures, and warned against belittling the deadly COVID-19.
He said it would be unwise for any person to underestimate the coronavirus, and urged all to protect themselves.