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UNFPA Executive Director: adolescent pregnancy is not just a health issue, it’s a development issue

There are over 600 million girls in the world today, more than 500 million of them in developing countries. They are shaping humanity’s present and future. The opportunities and choices girls have during adolescence will enable them to begin adulthood as empowered, active citizens.

With the right skills and opportunities, they can invest in themselves, in their families and their communities. However, pregnancy jeopardizes the rights, health, education and potential of far too many adolescent girls, robbing them of a better future.

Babatunde Osotimehin (UNFPA Executive Director)

Babatunde Osotimehin (UNFPA Executive Director)

About 16 million girls aged 15-19 give birth each year, and complications from pregnancy and child birth are the leading cause of death among girls in this age group, especially in developing countries.

Adolescent pregnancy is not just a health issue, it is a development issue. It is deeply rooted in poverty, gender inequality, violence, child and forced marriage, power imbalances between adolescent girls and their male partners, lack of education, and the failure of systems and institutions to protect their rights. To bring these issues to global attention, this year’s World Population Day is focusing on adolescent pregnancy.

Breaking the cycle of adolescent pregnancy requires commitment from nations, communities and individuals in both developed and developing countries to invest in adolescent girls. Governments should enact and enforce national laws that raise the age of marriage to 18 and should promote community-based efforts that support girls’ rights and prevent child marriage and its consequences.

Adolescents and youth must be provided with age-appropriate comprehensive sexuality education to develop the knowledge and skills they need to protect their health throughout their lives. However, education and information are not enough. Good quality reproductive health services must also be readily available in order for adolescents to make informed choices and be healthy.

At the local level, communities should provide the infrastructure to deliver reproductive health care in a youth-friendly and sensitive way.

Underlying all these efforts is the understanding that the dignity and human rights of adolescent girls must be respected, protected and fulfilled. Today, we call on governments, the international community and all stakeholders involved to take measures that enable adolescent girls to make responsible life choices and to provide the necessary support for them in cases when their rights are threatened. Every young girl, regardless of where she lives, or her economic circumstances, has the right to fulfill her human potential. Today, too many girls are denied that right. We can change that, and we must.

See more at Source: http://goo.gl/nS3WZ

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Posted by on July 11, 2013 in Ghanabakwamena Zone!, Issues!

 

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Ghana Is Counting- Get Counted!

Dr. Grace Bediako (Government Statistician)

Before the advent of a population census by the British Administration, our local chiefs used to count their subjects at specific periods. Population counting in Ghana started in 1891 with a population of 764,185. For all things being equal; Ghana conducts Censuses at a ten (10) years interval, but these were confined to the colony. It was not until 1921 that the exercise was extended to cover the entire area of modern Ghana but was interrupted in 1941 as a result of the 2nd world war and resumed in 1948, the last count in pre-independent Ghana. Since then, there have been four post-independent censuses (1960, 1970, 2984, and 2000).

CENSUS YEARS IN GHANA AND CORRESPONDING POPULATION

CENSUS YEAR POPULATION
1921 2.3 million
1931 3.2 million
1948 4.1 million
1960 6.7 million
1970 8.6 million
1984 12.3 million
2000 18.9 million

Source: GSS, 2005 Population Data Analysis Report, Vol. 1, Table 1.1, p.3

The 2010 Census will be the 5th Census to be carried out in the country since Ghana’s independence in 1957. The Population and Housing Census will be the second time Ghana will be conducting a Population and Housing Census as one operation. This will give us the total number of persons and housing types in every Ghanaian town or village settlement. Statistical Service Law, 1985 (PNDCL 135) empowers the Government Statistician to conduct statistical surveys and any Census in Ghana. The Census takes of on the 26th of September 2010.

I will advice you take great note of the following important tit-bits:

Only the head of a household (a person with direct social and economic responsibility for the members of the household) or any responsible adult of the household qualifies to be interviewed in the 2010 Census, the head will answer on behalf of the members, so it’s best for heads of households to know some basic information on members of their household, e.g. Age, Date and Place of Birth, Educational Status, Employment Status, Actual type of work the person does.

All persons (Ghanaians and Non-Ghanaians) in the country at the Census Night will be enumerated, but everyone will be interviewed on the same day, the enumeration/counting exercise is two weeks, if your household isn’t counted during the period, let the Census Officials know through these hotlines provided: 0289553888 and 0289553889.

No need to travel to one’s hometown to be counted for the Population and Housing Census (PHC) 2010, everyone must be counted at their actual place of stay as much as possible- it will enable government and providers of amenities like electricity and water to know the kind and number of people they are dealing with. Otherwise there will be wrong impression with the distribution of the population, “quality data drives good decision making”. Also note, you will be enumerated where you spent the Census Night (12 am, this is a reference point to which all information collected will be referred to. This is due to the snap-shot nature of the census). Please, respondents should cooperate with enumerators and give accurate Information to Census officials; they are under oath to keep all information they receive from respondents, as Confidential.

About five-thousand (50,000) field workers will be dispatched to all parts of the country to conduct interviews of households and compile the population and basic characteristics of residential institutions, such as boarding houses, hotels, hospitals, prisons, etc.

The ensure you are dealing with a genuine census officer check for an identification Card (ID), a census-customized T-shirt and a letter of introduction, if one is still in doubt please call the numbers provided above.

Note, from the history of Census in Ghana, there has never been any time when census data has been used for taxation. Everybody counts including the physically challenged, even the bed-ridden, so don’t hide them- Ghana can only plan better for them if their numbers are known. People traveling, those who will sleep in hotels, motels and the other rest places will enumerated on the Census night. Same applies to Students in boarding Schools, Colleges and Universities, Patients in hospitals, Prisoners, Security staff at border posts, and Out-door sleepers.

If you are still asking, “What at all will our nation derive from the Census?” I would love you listen good;

  • The Census would fulfill international requirements for data availability to track the nation’s progress.
  • The Census would enable us Update data on demographic and socio economic characteristics at the national, regional and district levels of our nation.
  • Data accrued will enable equitable distribution of resources and services at all levels.
  • It would provide basic data that can be used in the computation of indicators for tracking the process of poverty reduction programmes and other core targets of the economy including the achievements of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

Thanks for reading this item, hope you enjoyed every bit of information. Kindly pass the information on and remember to be sincere and give the enumerators accurate information about yourself and household.

 
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Posted by on September 16, 2010 in Issues!

 

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