United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) field office, Tamale has earmarked US$5,350,000 for programmes that they are going to undertake this year.
This was announced by the head of field office in Tamale Mrs. Clara Dube, during a meeting with the Upper West Minister, Alhaji Amin Amidu Sulemani at his office in Wa.
She said the greater chunk of the amount is already available, adding, the amount will go a long way to close the funding gap between the south and the North as they have just received more funding from the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).
She said the programs they would be looking at this year include education, child protection, health and nutrition, communication for development; water and sanitation as their topmost priority.
Touching on the overview of the annual plan for the Upper West Region, Mrs. Clara said in the area of health and nutrition, they are working towards the reduction of maternal and child under nutritio. In addition they will be looking at maternal, neonatal and child health and an estimated budget of two million one hundred and fifty five dollars has been earmarked out of which six hundred thousand is already at hand.
On education, Mrs. Clara said US$1,200,000 is voted for children aged between four to fourteen years who are disadvantaged to have access to education.
In terms of quality of education they will be working at improving the proficiency of children in Mathematics and English to remove the fears they have in those two subjects.
She concluded that they would meeting with the stakeholders and the technical team on how to strategize for those targets to be met in the annual work plan and assured the Regional Minister that after a discussion with the technical team they will make sure that the resources gets to the beneficiaries.
The Upper West Regional Minister Ambassador Alhaji Amin Amidu Sulemani on his part thanked UNICEF for the support given to the region over the years. Ambassador Suleman said he was happy on the critical areas chosen to work on with particular reference on the health and nutrition.
It is his believe that once it is tackled, the people of the region will benefit a lot from it because the region is considered as the poorest region in the country and mothers will be the greatest beneficiaries.
He assured the UNICEF that the Upper West Regional Coordinating Council (RCC) is ready to support and partner them to reduce poverty in the region.