Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) who work to support children in street situations have been urged to partner with each other in order to adequately satisfy the complex needs of the vulnerable children.
A Board Member of Street Children Empowerment Foundation (SCEF), Christiana Baafuo-Awuah made this call in a virtual conference organized by SCEF in collaboration with other NGOs to discuss how a petition to government can yield results.
Madam Baafuo-Awuah noted that since individual organisations do not have all the fundamental resources and expertise to effectively handle the issues of street children, combining forces will help achieve positive and sustainable outcomes.
She also noted that as advocates of marginalized children, collaborating with each other will give them a louder voice that will be heard by government and policymakers, thus enabling them to implement laws that will favour the defenceless children in the street.
“Research shows that partnership working helps partners to maximize the use of their resources. Partnership working with each other will make us more creative, we will achieve a more coordinated approach in delivering and implementing services for children across the country.
“Joint efforts will also give us the opportunity to share our expertise with each other we will be able to work jointly to identify gaps in service delivery,” she noted.
The UK based Board Member said although partnerships come with some challenges, the benefits far outweigh the risk, therefore, it will be the best approach towards achieving the theme of the petition which is: “Social Protection During Crisis: Leaving No Child Behind”.
“Some of the unintended outcomes from partnership working will be that we will be more efficient, we will cut out waste and duplication and in the long term we will make efficiency savings and our work with vulnerable children will hopefully achieve sustainable outcomes in all dimensions.
“Working in partnership is now a trend in many countries across the world not just in working with vulnerable children but across all service sectors and institutions in an attempt to secure sustainability for all and to save money,” she stressed.
Board Chairman of SCEF, Dr Bella Bello Bitugu on his part encouraged NGOs to finds efficient ways of generating capital internally.
According to him, self-generated funds will enable organisations to be independent to carry out certain projects which otherwise would have been sidelined by a sponsor.
“We need to realise that there is a lot of dependence on the Principal North to bring the resources for work to be done.
“And they have their own agenda, they have their own priorities, directions, ideologies and philosophies so it gets transferred and imposed here so you are not always free to operate the way you would want to operate or the direction you would want to operate.
“So as much as we work with the Principal North, we should also try and look at ways of getting resources, funding and strategies from our local environment,” he urged.
The conference was organised as part of the activities to mark the 10th anniversary of SCEF and advocate for the inclusion of children in the street situation to policies.