HIV / AIDS in Africa - Kpando, Ghana

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General information about Kpando

Kpando Ghana Map
Coordinates: 6°59’57.28″N, 0°18’9.43″E

The Kpando district is one of the administrative districts in the Volta Region of Ghana with its center at Kpando. The district is boarded by the Hohoe District at the north, Jasikan District at the east, the North Dayi at the southwith the beautiful Volta Lake forming the western border. About 70,000 people reside in the district and are mostly Ewe speaking nationals.

The people who live here mostly farm, fish, operate commercial vehicles, mine kaolin mining, or work in party trading. An interesting and attractive vocation of the indigenous people across the district is pottery making and wood carving. Many of their beautiful crafts can be found only in the Kpando district made exclusively by natives of Kpando and Vakpo.

The vegetation in the area is partly savannah woodland and forest, with famous rivers like the Volta and the River Dayi. The main crops that are grown here are vegetables, rice, maize, chines yam, water yam, and cassava. The marshy lands combined with the rivers and the Volta Lake make the land favorable for season farming. Due to the good soil the district is able to grow most of Ghanas dry season vegetables, with the leading crop being garden eggs and okra.

Both social and road network infrastructure are well developed throughout the district. There are six senior secondary schools, with three Secondary Technical Schools. The district also has the world recognized Margaret Marquart Catholic Hospital and two other large hospitals. Kpando district is equipped with electricity, potable drinking water and hospitality facilities.

There are several tourist attractions in the area with the Volta Lake, with its scatted beautiful islands, providing good sight seeing activities. There are two grottos (Bluesof Urs Grotto at Kpando Aziave and Ladies of Lourdes Grotto at Kpando Agbenohoe), the Wli Waterfalls, and a Monkey Sanctuary.

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AIDS in Ghana

HIV/AIDS is accepted as a leading cause of death, which has lead to the establishment of many orphanages in Ghana, particularly in the Kpando district. Those mainly affected are adults between the ages of 18-45. This age group constitutes the labor force and therefore the breadwinners of their various families. The epidemic is a very serious threat to the socio-economic development of the district since this target group is referred to as the future leaders of every society. If no efforts are made to sustain the lives of the children these AIDS victims leave behind, the future of the district looks very bleak.

The alarming rate of the spread of HIV/AIDS has necessitated the establishment of an orphanage to take care of the social and economic needs of all AIDS orphans below 15 years of age. Many families have refused to take care of the orphaned children; specifically those living with HIV/AIDS and many are financially unable to do so even if they wished. The situation of these children in the district is very alarming. By looking at recent data collected, it is shown that over 100 orphans have lost either one or both of their parents to HIV/AIDS. This is expected to increase daily since the disease is not slowing.

The development of a country depends a lot on its education. Unfortunately, children who come from families devastated by HIV and AIDS are the ones who withdraw more frequently from school due to the lack of financial support. Those families have considerably less than those who have not been affected by HIV and AIDS. After having to spend huge amounts of money on medical expenses and funerals and after they have had children placed with them due to AIDS, many families do not have the means to pay for the orphans education. The area, populated mostly by an indigenous community lives according to the extended family system. Many teenagers marry young, which they hope will allow them to rise out of their living situations. One can see as many as eight to eighteen people living in a house of on average of six rooms. The HardtHaven program aims to not only care for the victims of HIV/AIDS but also educate the community in order to prevent further victims.

For more information about the HIV/AIDS crisis in Ghana please check out the Ghana AIDS Commission website at www.ghanaids.gov.gh