On Thursday, November 28, 2019, UNFPA Ghana along with its Goodwill Ambassador Claudia Lumor, launched ‘Friends of UNFPA’. This was aimed to further the agenda of sexual and reproductive health and rights of the agency in Ghana.
The ceremony hosted at the residence of the Royal Norwegian Ambassador to Ghana saw attendance from members of the diplomatic community, traditional rulers, academia as well as journalists and business leaders, among others.
Norwegian Ambassador H.E. Gunnar A. Holm in a welcoming address, stated that Norway is ready to assist Ghana to achieve her developmental needs and ambitions. He reaffirmed Norway’s commitment to support the work of UNFPA’s goal of delivering a world where every pregnancy is wanted, every childbirth is safe, and every young person’s potential is fulfilled.
Claudia Lumor who is also the CEO of Glitz Africa, is a passionate advocate for gender and maternal health as well as the welfare of children. She acknowledged her responsibility to create awareness on UNFPA’s mandate issues which she however cannot do alone.
“It is for this single reason that I am mobilising all who are interested and passionate about issues affecting women and girls as well as young people in general. Together we can advocate for an enabling environment and champion support towards realising the UNFPA transformative goals of ending unmet need for family planning, ending preventable maternal deaths and ending gender-based violence and harmful practices,” Claudia appealed.
Formally launching the ‘Friends of UNFPA’, the guest of honour, Professor Esi Sutherland-Addy, a human rights activist and renowned scholar of African Studies at the University of Ghana, lauded the formation of the alliance, highlighting the prospects it held for the socio-cultural development of the country. She equally intimated the need for commitment by the “friends” to ensure that initiatives put forward by the group are sustained in the future.
The ‘Friends of UNFPA’ will exist as a broad partnership of opinion leaders including development partners, traditional rulers, religious leaders, academicians as well as celebrity influencers and members of the diplomatic community who are interested in championing the interest of women and girls, including young people for the defence of their human rights and maximisation of their potential.
Ms. Josiane Yaguibou, UNFPA Representative in Togo who participated in the launch remarked, “Friends of UNFPA Ghana was a resounding success and a bold testimony that the ICPD mandate is alive and well. It is a best practice that Togo may replicate soon and we will lean on you for guidance.”