Tema is located on the Atlantic coast of Ghana and has a population of roughly 160, 000 inhabitants. It is Ghana’s most important seaport and home to some major industrial plants. Over the past decades, this attracted many people from all over the country in search for employment and better living conditions. However, the city was unable to keep up with this influx of people and is marked by deep inequalities. Many people are without a job, proper housing, or sanitation. Under these circumstances, there are countless children engaging in labour activities instead of going to school.
Since 1974, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Lubango.
Many people in Tema live in poor conditions, with no proper housing, no access to running water or no sanitation. As a result, the spread of diseases is a common problem.
The Ghanaian government has taken significant steps to ensure that children are immunized. Nevertheless, many children, especially those who live in densely populated parts of urban areas, have not been vaccinated and are exposed to a number of diseases at an early age.
In fact, there are around 20,000 reported cases of preventable diseases like measles or mumps every year.
Like in other regions of Ghana, some poorer areas within the city of Tema do not have access to clean drinking water or proper sanitation facilities.
Some progress has been made to ensure that children and families have access to safe drinking water. However, around 76% of households in Ghana are at risk of drinking water contaminated with faecal matter. Various approaches and interventions in urban basic sanitation are not effectively coordinated and monitored. As a result, access to toilets and other hygiene facilities is limited. This puts children at greater risk of contracting infectious disease.