The Department of Audiology, Speech, and Language of the School of Biomedical and Allied Health Sciences in the University of Ghana have reached a partnership with NGO Operation Smile Ghana.
The partnership involved the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), between both parties and included an amount of money to be donated to the school. The signing took place at the Old Council Chamber on 2nd June, 2023.
The unquantified amount of funds from the partnership is set to cover four main areas which includes the training of 10 Ph.D. students, supporting student and staff research, training of 10 speech and language therapists across the country, and the provision of traveling and accommodation allowances for students and staff.
Speaking to UniverNews, Dean of the School of Biomedical and Allied Health Sciences of the University of Ghana, Prof. Samuel Antwi-Baffour had expressed his joy over the partnership.
He however called for more partnerships and collaboration to help the school grow.
“It means a lot to us; [The School] needs more expansion to train more people. Currently, the kind of programs we do in Allied Health is very highly contributing to the well-being of the country. When we have this kind of collaboration and support, we will be able to take more students and then train more people to help with the health delivery of the country.”
The Board Chairman of Operation Smile Ghana, Subhi Accad described the support as part of their social responsibilities to the country.
According to him, one of the ways the NGO can help support Ghana’s health system is by enhancing the health education system.
“This is the least we can do for Ghana and Ghanaians; this is our social responsibility and our duty towards patients…to reach the patients and to support them, and the best way to do it is to enhance and support the [health] education system and the research system.”
Meanwhile, the Pro-Vice Chancellor in charge of Academic and Students Affairs Prof. Gordon Awandare encouraged more partnerships for the benefits of the school.
He also extended his gratitude to the NGO for their decision to collaborate with the University’s College.
“We are incredibly honored that [Operation Smile Ghana] chose to partner with…our friends in the department for the benefit of the whole College. We want to commend and encourage the leadership of the department to build similar partnerships for us to formalize it for you.”
As he kept expressing gratitude to the NGO, he hoped for a longer partnership for the benefit of Health in the country as well.
“We want to express our gratitude and our enthusiasm to continue to work with you and improve our institution but also to provide the care that you want to provide to patients, especially children who need this type of support. We are very honored to continue to partner with you and hopefully, this will be the beginning of a bigger collaboration and we look forward to that.”
Story by | Frederick Kunzote-Ani | universnews.ug.edu.gh