Where do the children play? King Nobert asks [Article]
Being a child is the most enjoyable phase in one’s life cycle. It’s a magical moment where you are not burdened with any sorrows and struggles of life.
To most people the formative life of a child is the most crucial and parents must ensure that children have much of the fun in the sand and sun to prepare them for the busy schedules of adulthood.
Spending quality time in a field with toys and other recreational facilities does not only give children congenial environment away from the congested homes and schools but also builds their cognitive abilities.
The children’s park as the name suggests is where children learn and play together. Socialization and team work is learned as the children complete basic tasks together.
A standard Children’s park has well pruned laws and flowers with several playthings strewed over the field. There are books for children to read, swings and metal rocks for children to play with to have the needed exercise and excitement.
The growth of any society depends on the values they place on the development of the youth. And the livability of such community depends on the sort of facilities established for social gatherings and children’s development.
Such recreational facilities are tangible reflection of the lives of the people.
A community that has no adequate provisions for social interactions where families, individuals, social groups irrespective of their social and financial status could meet and interact is a dead community with most citizens suffering depressions and stress.
Such a community lacks social cohesion and it is susceptible to criminal activities and child delinquencies.
Although Ghana has subscribed to a number of international treaties for child right protections and development, little is being done for provision of favorable atmosphere for child’s growth.
Aside the usual jamborees in the drink bars and few movie shows in the big cities, the social life of the Ghanaian has been so mind-numbing and narrow without excitement.
This is more exhilarating in the lives of residents of Ho, the Volta Regional Capital.
The City currently has no dedicated facility for social gatherings and merry makings. The only children’s park in the city was abandoned decades ago and has turned into a den for criminals and people engaged in other social vices. Residents have also turned the park into a place convenience to dispose feacal matter and other wastes.
The once vibrant park has lost its essence; encroachers have taken portions of it for farming and automobile services. The once greenly lawns have withered exposing the bear ground. Car mechanics and washing bays are sprouting on portions of the landspace.
The only few things that could remind you of the past glory of this park are the rusted relics of the swinging Mary-go-round device. In deed the area is no longer safe for the child and the general public especially in the night.
The Regional Director of Social Welfare; Children’s Department Mr Isaac Akrobotu told CitiNews the Ministry of Gender and Children’s Protection under a new leadership is putting in measures to revamp children’s parkS across the country. He added that the main challenge with the Ho Park is the activities of encroachers.
Other facilities that could play equal roles of keeping life in the City and developing the child are the Centre for National Culture(CNC) and the Regional Library Complex.
Unfortunately, the dreams of having an ultramodern Centre with a perfect acoustic setting for theatre performances in the region have been dashed after the construction of the edifice have been abandoned for years. The construction which was commenced speedily at the initial stages was finally paused at 70 percent completion for decades now. The beauty of the glass windows and dressed surfaces has faded with potions of the roofs at the points of removing. Its immediate corridors provide spaces for churches, while the main theater looked very dusty and dirty and its environs unattractive for events.
Mr Emmanuel Quao, the Regional Director for Centre for National Culture bemoaned the poor state of the facility.
The construction of the Volta Regional Library Complex in Ho which was started in 2003 to replace the old structure borrowed from Bankoe E.P Basic School near a public toilet is at a slow pace.
The Bankoe space is not conducive for learning as patrons would have to endure the stench from the public toilet behind the hall.
In the absence of such productive facilities, children in the municipality are often seen without any parental guidance, participating in social events that do not impact them positively.
This not being exhaustive, many have attributed the poor academic performance among students in the region to the poor learning facilities that do not inure to development of the child.
As the country prepares to celebrate this year’s children day in the Volta region on Thursday(31st August), a question that we should be asking ourselves as a nation is; what kind of children are we grooming to take up management of the country?.
Is it children without strong foundation where their values and good sense of judgment can easily be washed away by the tides of the time or the child who is confidence and knowledge is in tandem with their colleagues across the globe and could manage our country to the desired progress in our absence?
The lips service must stop and governments must set out clear cut plans with timelines on building conducive atmosphere for the child’s growth.
Ahead of the Thursday celebrations, I ask; where do the children play?
By: King Nobert Akpablie/citifmonline.com/Ghana