The United States government has awarded $5 million to the International Organization on Migration (IOM) and Free the Slaves (FTS), an international NGO working in Ghana. The funding is to support the recently signed U.S.-Ghana Child Protection Compact (CPC) Partnership.
The CPC Partnership is the first-ever jointly developed plan to address child sex trafficking and forced child labor within Ghana.
In a statement issued October 27, 2015, the US government said the IOM and FTS who are CPC implementing partners, will work collaboratively with the Ghanaian government and other civil society organizations to combat forced child labor and child sex trafficking in the Volta, Central, and Greater Accra regions over the next four years.
“This Partnership represents the inaugural opportunity for the United States to work cooperatively with the Ghanaian ministries responsible for child protection and law enforcement and the civil society organizations that work diligently to end child trafficking in Ghana and build a better future for Ghana’s children.” said U.S. Ambassador at Large to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, Susan Coppedge.
The statement said, “IOM will work with the Ghanaian government to strengthen internal coordination and to establish protocols and referral mechanisms for victim identification and ensure a timely and effective response to suspected cases of trafficking. IOM will also build the skills of social service workers, police, judges and prosecutors and support increased enforcement of child trafficking laws by providing logistical support to Ghanaian police and assisting victims and witnesses’ participation in criminal proceedings”.
The statement also noted that the FTS will train community leaders to recognize child trafficking, take appropriate action and help reintegrate rescued children into communities; raise public awareness in selected communities; support livelihood alternatives for families of reintegrated children; convene two national symposia; and provide staff training and sub-grants to selected NGOs for provision of aftercare services for child trafficking victims.
The CPC partners seek to establish a more holistic approach to improving coordination of government and civil society anti-trafficking efforts and enhancing Ghana’s capacity to prosecute and convict child traffickers, protect child victims of human trafficking, and prevent child trafficking.
Source: Ekow Quandzie