MTN Ghana organized substance abuse awareness programme as part of activities to mark the 2019 edition of 21 Days of Y’ello Care.
The programme was organized to educate school children on the need to refrain from the use ofunprescribed drugs as well as reduce the rate of substance abuse among the youth. The event was held atTemaManhean in partnership with Narcotics Control Board and Ghana Pharmacy Council.
The event started with a float from the main road of Tema Fishing Habour with MTN Staff volunteers’distributing flyers and sensitizing people on the effects of drug abuse. The float ended with a durbar attended by over 600 pupils from 10 Junior High Schools from the TemaManhean Community. MTN Staff volunteers and staff of the Narcotics Control Board interacted with pupils and educated them on the need to stay away from the use of unprescribeddrugs and other illicit substance. In addition, there was a counseling section with the aim to provide support for victims of substance abuse. The durbar was climaxed with a surprise performance by former MTN Hitmakers, Kwame Eugene and ‘Kidi’. The two artists took turns to talk to the kids to stay away from drugsbefore their performance.
Speaking at the event,the Human Resource Executive of MTN Ghana, Mrs. Amma Benneh-Amponsah said it had been observed that, students are mostly the target for drug peddlers hence the decision to take the campaign to pupils in Junior and Senior High Schools.“Substance abuse has become prevalent now and it is important that we target those that are at risk especially students, whoeasily fall prey to drug abuse. We want to tackle it at the tender age before it gets out of hand”.
She said “MTN in consultation with its partners will continue to engage the youth in risk communities to help them appreciate the need to stay away from drugsand supportreduce the menace.”
Staff volunteers in the regions also organized inter school quizzes and awareness on drug abuse across the country. Some also visited some selected prisons including the Borstal Institute in Accra to interact with young inmates.
This year’s 2019 21 Days of Y’ello Care was organized under the theme “Creating a Brighter Future for our Youth.” In line with the theme, MTN Ghana volunteers implemented projects aimed at youth empowerment and development. Some of the projects included thetraining of unemployed youth in skills such as bead making, leather works, hairdressing and computer programming. MTN staff volunteers also trained the beneficiaries in Digital Marketing, Financial Management, Project Management and Customer Service management.
The 21 Days of Y’ello Care initiative is an annual employee volunteer initiative launched by MTN Group in 2007 to encourage MTN staff to commit their time and resources to community service for 21 days in June. The “21 Days of Y’ello Care” is a competition amongst MTN operations to secure the highest number of staff involved in volunteerism and initiating projects with remarkable impact. The country with the highest staff participation wins the prize money of $100,000 to be reinvested in community projects.
Since the inception of the 21 days of Y’ello Care challenge in 2007, MTN Ghana has won the 2008 WECARegional Awards and the overall Y’ello Care Challenge for 2010 and 2011.MTN Ghanaalso won theY’ello Care ICT Project for 2013 and Y’ello Care Innovation Project award for 2014.