Ghana Federation of Disability Organization (GFD) has strengthened its relationship with one of Ghana’s public tertiary institution, Kwame University of Science and Technology (KNUST) by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on disability inclusion.

GFD recently held a dialogue session for Heads of Counselling Departments on the Universities campuses on disability inclusion and access for counselling for persons with disability studying in the Universities.

The first University to sign the pact is the University for Development Studies (UDS) during the dialogue session held in Accra. Other Universities yet to sign the MoU are the University of Ghana (UG) and the University of Cape Coast (UCC).

Speaking to Kasapafmonline, the Executive Director for GFD, Rita Kusi Kyeremaa said the initiative is geared towards empowering the Counselling Units on the various University Campuses to consciously have policies that are inclusive of persons with disabilities.

“We are engaging them in order to empower them to consciously identify persons with disabilities in the institutions who may not have knowledge of these services and ensure they access their services. Also in ensuring that they help in building data on persons with disabilities,” she disclosed.

The GFD boss said the initiative was on the backdrop of reports, experiences and feedbacks from persons with disability and members with the Federation on the various University campuses across the country.

“We are aware that persons with disability face many structural and institutional challenges and attitudes that affect their lives psychologically,” Madam Kusi Kyerema stated.

The Head of Counselling Department at KNUST, Victoria De-Graft Adgyei in an interview with Kasapafmonline via the telephone stated that the University has opportunities for Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) who enrol in their institution.

Mrs De-Graft Adgyei disclosed that KNUST gives accommodation to PWDs as well as extra time to take exams for persons who have difficulty in writing as against the normal time.

She said they have dedicated two (2) shuttle (Vehicles) solely for persons with disability, to take them from one point to other going for lectures, to their hostels so that other students cannot struggle with them in boarding the bus.

“At KNUST we have Disability Policy and fortunately, I am a member of the Implementing Management Committee. I take advantage of that in order that whatever programme the University will organize in relation to disability the Counselling Centre is involved,” the Counselling Psychology stated.

Madam De-Graft Adyei said KNUST has a Disability Students Association where students with disability are made to join and meet their coordinators for the needed support.

“The Counselling Department work closely with all the units in the University especially the Master-Card Foundation. Last year, we opened up to also bring on board persons with disability so that they will be part of the Scholarship. So the centre had a training session for them on how they can recruit persons with disability,” she stated.

Source: Ghana/ Isaac Dzidzoamenu