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Symposium on Girls in the SDG Era Held at IAS

The Institute of African Studies, in collaboration with the Takemi Programme in International Health at the Harvard University held a one-day symposium on Tuesday, 12 November 2019 at the J. H. K. Nketia Conference Hall under the theme, Girls in the SDG Era: Health, Equity and Education.  The symposium was coordinated by Dr. Deborah Atobrah, Senior Research Fellow of the IAS.

Opening the symposium, the Director of the Institute, Professor Dzodzi Tsikata welcomed participants to the symposium and urged them to seize the platform provided by the Takemi Foundation to discuss a timely and topical issue such as Girls in the Sustainable Development Goals Era. The Director was particularly excited that the Institute could partner with the Takemi Foundation to organize the symposium, aimed at sensitizing young girls about their education and health.

The special guest of honour for the programme was the Japanese Ambassador to Ghana, H. E. Ambassador Himeno. Ambassador Himeno expressed his joy that the programme had been hosted by the University of Ghana, one of the prestigious universities in Africa. He reiterated that it was important for participants to discuss issues that would lead to the formulation of policies to benefit young girls who are in dire need of education.

Delivering the Key Note Address, Professor Uche Amazogo, Professor of Medical Parasitology and a Public Health Specialist charged participants to endeavor to educate girls to stay in schools and not drop out. She stressed that it was imperative for institutions to intensify the campaign aimed at keeping girls in schools because it was never the fault of these girls to drop out of school.

The programme was attended by Dr. Jesse Bump, Executive Director, Takemi Programme in International Health, Harvard University; Onyinye Onyemobi, Programme Associate, West Africa Ford Foundation; Lola Dare, Chief Executive Officer, Centre for Health Sciences Training, Research and Development; and Professor Albert Awedoba, Research Professor at the Institute of African Studies.

Jessie and Himeno

The symposium was followed by a Policy Round Table discussion on Wednesday, 13 November 2019 at the African Regent Hotel; and it was chaired by Emerita Professor Takyiwaa Manuh of the Institute of African Studies. The Round Table discussion which was geared towards soliciting inputs from stakeholders to initiate a policy on girls’ health in the SDG Era attracted several Governmental organizations, Civil Society Organizations and key partners in the education, public health and development sectors. 

A section of participants at the Symposium

A section of participants at the Symposium