The Department of Gender (DoG), under the auspices of the Volta Regional Coordinating Council (VRCC), with funding support from UNFPA, organized “A Three-day Mentorship and Empowerment Programme” for 60 adolescent girls and their school-based facilitators from six districts in both Volta and Oti Regions. The programme started from the 9th to 11th August 2022 at the GNAT Hall, Ho.

On the first day of the programme, Tuesday, 9th August 2022, there were two sessions comprising the Opening Ceremony and a Capacity Development Session. Three presentations were made during the Development Session, namely Changes in Adolescent and Menstrual Hygiene, Effects of Early Sexual Activities with Focus on Adolescent Pregnancy and STIs Prevention, and Concepts of Gender and Gender Equality.

The first two presentations were handled by Mrs. Paulina Nneka Adoba from the Ghana Health Service. She educated young adolescent girls on how to respond to the changes they experience as adolescents and the need for keeping good menstrual hygiene. She also explained, with vivid pictorial images, to them the effects of early sexual activities with focus on Teenage Pregnancy and STIs and the need for their prevention.

Mrs. Thywill Eyra Kpe, the Regional Director of Department of Gender on her part handled the third presentation which focused on the concepts of Gender and Gender Equality. Adolescent girls were made to understand the difference between gender and sex as well as the societal misconceptions that bring about the issues of Gender Inequality. Mrs. Kpe also stated that Gender Equality meant access to equal opportunities to all, regardless of one’s sex. She therefore admonished all girls to make good of any opportunity that comes their way to ensure self-development.

Dignitaries present for the day one activities included, Madam Seyram A. Geni-Aydam,  the Ho Municipal Director of Ghana Health Service (GES); Mrs. Thywill Eyra Kpe,  Regional Director of Department of Gender; Madam Victoria Fato,  UNFPA Focal Person at the VRCC; Mr. Israel Akrobortu,  Regional Director for Department of Children; Madam Millicent Dakeh, Regional Girls Education Officer, GES; Madam. Paulina Nneka Adoba, Senior Officer from Ghana Health Service; and Madam Harriet Kuedokah from DOVVSU of the Ghana Police Service.

The theme for the programme was “Rekindling the Fight against Adolescent Pregnancy and SGBV: Girls, Take Action Now!”