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COVID-19 response is making positive change in the most unexpected ways

POSTED May 7, 2020

COVID-19 response is making positive change in the most unexpected ways

Hear one father’s story of how a radio program gave him resources to help keep his son safe

By William Anim-Dankwa, communications manager, Ghana, as told by Amadu

Family in front of their home in Ghana

Amadu, 49, was waiting for the Coronavirus (COVID-19) discussion to play on Radio Savanna after returning home from a tiring day under the Ghanaian sun preparing ‘mounds’ for the planting of 500 yams.

He was hoping to meet his entire family, but that wasn’t the case. He wondered where his older son was but settled in to hear what the radio announcers were saying about the new “Colonial virus” topic.

Everyone in his neighbourhood had their interpretation of the virus. Some said it could be washed away with alcohol; others suggested it could be washed away with soap. Amadu needed some reliable answers and listened to learn how to prevent the disease.

The radio announcers and guests from Christian Children’s Fund of Canada (CCFC, Children Believe in Canada) talked about washing hands often and thoroughly, avoiding crowded areas, keeping a safe distance from people and avoiding shaking hands.

Then the radio discussion shifted to engaging children at home by creating trust through play, storytelling and encouraging their dreams while teaching respect, obedience, honesty, truthfulness and determination. This hit home for Amadu.

For about a month his 15-year-old son hadn’t been coming home in the afternoons, and sometimes he wasn’t sleeping in his bed. So when the opportunity came for the audience to call into the program, Amadu dialed in, and, with a shaky voice, asked what to do.

He was given examples of how to engage with his son and encourage positive change by making time for the teen.

Amadu was surprised child safety would be a concern with the COVID-19 outbreak, but he soon realized his son was at risk if he wasn’t staying home or social-distancing during the outbreak. He learned how the virus could have an impact in many areas of life.

The concerned father has since begun to encourage open conversation with his son, who now comes home, despite the extra work he was managing to find.

Amadu is thankful to the program, and CCFC, for helping him in ways he never imagined.

To learn more about how you can help with COVID-19 relief, visit childrenbelieve.ca/covid.

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ABOUT CHILDREN BELIEVE (formerly Christian Children's Fund of Canada):

Children Believe works globally to empower children to dream fearlessly, stand up for what they believe in — and be heard. For 60 years, we’ve brought together brave young dreamers, caring supporters and partners, and unabashed idealists. Together, we’re driven by a common belief: creating access to education — inside and outside of classrooms — is the most powerful tool children can use to change their world.