By Ghana News Agency
The Rebecca Foundation on Wednesday donated assorted items to street children in Accra as part of efforts to ensure they eat healthily.
The items included bags of rice, sugar and beans, cartons of milk and cooking oil, and boxes of canned fish.
The Foundation, in collaboration with Enhancing the Youth through Education and Health (EYEH) Soup Kitchen, an association of retired civil servants, also counselled the children to lead morally upright and disciplined lives.
Mrs Akosua Newman, the Director of Operations at the Office of the First Lady and the Rebecca Foundation, who donated the items, said the welfare of children was at the heart of the Foundation, hence its leader, Mrs Rebecca Akufo-Addo, deemed it important to support the street children.
She appealed to the public to redirect focus and support children on the streets to enable them to become responsible citizens, saying; “They are on the streets due to circumstances beyond their control and not because of their choice.”
Dr Charlotte Gardiner, the Medical Director of EYEH Soup Kitchen, said the Association found the number of street children worrying, especially as their welfare was at stake.
It, therefore, decided to mobilise resources from individuals and organisations to provide them with basic support to enhance their livelihood, she said.
“We decided to run a soup kitchen to give them soup food at least once a month. We also solicited for support from entities like the Max Mart who agreed to give us pastries and other basic necessities for the children.”
Dr Gardiner expressed appreciation to the Rebecca Foundation and the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection for supporting the initiative.
Through the intervention, she said, a number of the children had been housed at the Madina Shelter for Street Children, which was recently renovated by the Ministry of Gender.
Six of the children have been established in vocations such as auto mechanics, welding, and carpentry to earn a living, she said.
Dr Gardiner appealed to pharmaceutical companies to support them with drugs so they could provide better medical services to the children.
The EYEH Soup Kitchen, also known as “Ladies with Ladles of Love,” is an association of retired civil servants who identify societal problems and mobilise resources to provide solutions.
Eric Agboli, a 14-year old boy and a beneficiary, told the Ghana News Agency in an interview that he left home due to financial hardships and difficult work he was subjected to.
“Whenever I was sick at home, they never gave me medicine but only preferred to give me countless works to do. I like fighting too, so when I left the house, it’s like my parents had a peace of mind so they didn’t look for me,” he said.