Dalex Finance and Leasing Company Limited (Dalex) has initiated a one million Ghana New cedis Ebola Education Fund to raise private sector money to support a large scale effort to educate the Ghanaian population about the Virus.
Mr Kenneth Kwamina Thompson, Chief Executive Officer of Dalex Finance told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in an interview after the launch that, the company was motivated by a shared concern that the potential effect of the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) outbreak on the already soft Ghanaian economy could be severe.
He said the Dalex Finance is working in collaboration with the United Nations Children and Education Fund (UNICEF), Ghana; and the Business and Financial Times Limited.
The Dalex Chief Executive Officer said the effect of a declaration of medical emergency and the associated quarantine of areas in Ghana or even the whole country could be devastating on the Ghanaian private sector.
The initiators of the Ebola Education Fund are concerned that the current public education effort on the Ebola Disease is too slow and limited in scope.
Mr Thompson noted: “This is not the time to wait on the government or to moan about the slow reaction of the Ministry of Health.
“This is the time for a privately funded, quick reaction, national programme, incorporating radio, TV, information vans, posters, and, SMS messages to educate the public on the Ebola Virus Disease”.
The Fund is opened to contributions from the private sector, corporate organisations, non-governmental organisations, civil society organisations and individuals.
Mr Thompson said contributions will be accepted only from organisations and individuals, who do not engage in activities detrimental to public health such as child labour practices, manufacture and sale of tobacco products, manufacture and sale of alcoholic beverages.
Mr Thompson said the Fund will be used only for the creation of content for the education campaign and the execution of the campaign itself.
He said to ensure transparency; the Fund will be managed by an Advisory Board, comprising the Chief Executive Officer of B&FT or her representative; the Chief Executive Officer of Dalex or his representative; the CEO of the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunication and a representative of UNICEF.
Mr Thompson noted that, upon the completion of the education campaign, the Fund shall cease to exist after the accounts have been audited.
“All unused funds shall be donated to the Princess Marie Louis Children’s Hospital, Accra; Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital’s children’s ward Kumasi; Tamale Teaching Hospital Children’s Ward and Volta Regional Hospital Children’s Ward, Ho; to undertake clearly defined priority projects or procure vital equipment to support healthcare delivery,” he said.
He explained that a valuable tool in helping to prevent an outbreak of the disease in Ghana is a proactive nationwide education campaign.
Meanwhile, Mr Thompson has pledged GH₵100,000.00 personal contribution during the launch and appealed to private companies in the country to donate to the Ebola Educational Fund.
UNICEF is providing communication content and advisory services whiles BFT will lead the media effort and also the fund managers.
Dalex have also provided 10,000 flyers to be distributed through its sales force of over 1,000 sales executives. GNA