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HAVE YOU HEARD OF BRA DAY?

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Truth is majority of people in the world and Ghana have less idea about what BRA Day is. So when asked “what is BRA Day?”  many people have nothing to say or they talk about a day where no female wears a bra.

Speaking to Dr. Paa Ekow Hoyte Williams (second in the picture from the right in a white shirt), the Head of Division for the Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital , he said “The female breast is an important symbol of femininity. Loss of the breast due to cancer treatment can have significant physical and psychological impact on the woman. Many women eligible for breast reconstruction following cancer surgery are not being informed of their options. All women should know their options. It’s time to close the loop on breast cancer.”

He further added that “BRA Day has been there for a while now but mostly not in West Africa and Ghana. It is an international activity that falls on the 3rd Wednesday of October.Just to clear the misconceptions, BRA is not what women put on to cover the breast but BRA is the acronym for Breast Reconstruction Awareness. So yes many Ghanaians celebrated braless day or no bra day but the truth is, it is a day in the month of October set aside to inform survivors of breast cancer or post mastectomy patients of the available options of breast reconstruction in Ghana.”

Breast cancer awareness is well known now in the various societies but now the other aspect which is the reconstruction of the breast after it has been totally or partially removed in cancer treatment is the end of the cycle for breast cancer treatment.

Last year, the first ever BRA Day celebration in Ghana was organised by the Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital where they had a post mastectomy patient(Beth Goodman aka Spinkles) traveled from USA to Ghana to help in the campaign. She had survived breast cancer and had undergone total breast reconstruction.

During the awareness campaign she spoke to the women who were present for the free screening of how important it is to get breast reconstruction after cancer treatment. The women were allowed to see and feel her plastic reconstructed breast and they admitted it barely looks artificial.

Some cases were selected after the screening exercise for free breast reconstruction and after surgery the women were so happy.

This year’s campaign to create awareness on breast reconstruction has began massively with so many joining the train. The Health Sciences Students Association and Geological Engineering Students Association of KNUST are the new additions to the campaign. On 5th October they were live on air at Spirit FM 88.3 talking about Breast Cancer and Breast Reconstruction. They were joined by a Plastic Surgeon (Dr Boutrous) from Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital as they discussed breast cancer and breast reconstruction on the Health Segment of the radio station. Ken Ofori Atta from GESA KNUST said “There is no shame in males joining in the campaign of breast cancer and breast reconstruction. I feel if there  is breast cancer in the society, we all need to join forces and speak for it.”

Obuobi the health officer added his voice to the campaign “Every woman cherishes her breast therefore any threat to steal their joy should be faced with a collective effort from us all.”

Dr Boutrous made it clear most general surgeons are only interested in treating the breast cancer patient but after that they have to live their lives secluded from the society because they have lost their breast. He encouraged surgeons to tell their patients of the available options of reconstruction that will help close the loop on breast cancer treatment.

9th October has been  agreed as the date for BRA Day Ghana where everyone is expected to wear pink or white with a touch of pink, snap pictures and videos. The pictures and videos can be tagged with the #BRAdayGhana. There will be a health walk on the 12th October at KNUST Campus and 19th October from the Kumasi Central Police station to the Kumasi City Mall. On bothe days there will be free breast cancer screening. 

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UDS 22ND MATRICULATION CEREMONY

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The joyous moment, knowing you will be officially admitted into a university. This was written boldly on the faces of all freshers as the gravitated towards the school auditorium with high speed (laughter).

 

On the 12th of October, 2019, the class of 2023 were officially matriculated.
This ceremony has actually taken place on all UDS campuses.

Before the ceremony began, Ecowas Hall and Savannah hall were with full energy as they walk the resident freshers of the hall. As a matter of fact, it was the first time seeing Ecowas Hall and Savannah Hall having ” JAMA” together. It was all love.

 

As early as 8am the Principal together with his subordinates processed in. After the procession the school anthem was sung
A prayer was offered by the various religious groups on campus, the Christians and the Muslims.
The Deans and their associates were also introduced.
Meanwhile, the registrar was represented by the campus officer.
Before the matriculants sworn the oath, the principal delivered a speech.

Upon his delivery, he congratulates the matriculants on the day.
He stated that, the matriculation marks the end of admission and the formal admission into the school.
You need to know the reason for coming to school and the need to achieve that purpose. He said.

In his submission, all admitted candidates were admitted upon certain merits. Addressing the congregation, this year had an increase in application, a total of 19,183 of which 9, 479 was admitted.
Prof. Luguterah, the Navrongo Campus principal went on further that, out of the total 9,479, 51.9% were males and 48.26% were females. This has shown a significant increase in female applicants and admission.
This admission include student into the faculty of mathematical sciences, faculty of applied sciences and faculty of earth and environmental sciences.

Furthermore, he ensured the matriculants that, security and safety on campus will be regulated to ensure the safety and lives of students on campus. Addressing the issue of the campus’ lighting system.
On the issue of sex for grades which was aired few days ago, showing some lecturers indulging in the acts, of which he the principal strongly stand against. He stated clearly that the management of the school will not take it lightly with any senior member of the university seen or caught indulging in such act. We further cautioned the matriculants to be very careful,as not to fall victim.
Before ending his speech, he announced that, the school would be renamed very soon as it attain autonomy.

He advises the matriculants to be good students and welcomes them to the UNIVERSITY FOR DEVELOPMENT STUDIES.

As at 11am the matriculation ceremony was brought to an end after which the campus officer sworn every faculty into the school.

Another journey for the freshers, and we wish them all the best!

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ECOWAS HALL CHASES AFTER UDS LECTURERS

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For the past few days, there has been total black out on UDS Navrongo Campus. Rumors have it that Wa campus is facing the same problem.

This development has affected academic work on campus, pertaining to lecture halls, since the lights and fans are not functioning. This has mared the learning activities on campus.

The blackout has affected the traditional halls; ECOWAS HALL, SAVANNAH HALL and NAVRO HALL.
Since this is bringing uncomfortability to the student populace, the residents of ECOWAS HALL took it upon themselves to storm campus.

Fans and lights in the lecture halls are lying idle and most lecturers cannot stay inside their offices due to the  heat. At a region where the atmospheric temperature can reach a hopping 42°C in the day can be unbearable if there are no lights for the fans to cool the rooms.


Upon critical observations today on campus, eye witnesses noticed that, the generator has been idle for a number of times. Making its presence a white elephant.

As late as 3pm this afternoon residents of ECOWAS HALL were seen in their red regalia invading every lecture hall to stop academic activities.

 

Talking with the public relations officer of the SRC, he stated that, Tamale campus which is the central administration owes about Ghc27million which is more than that of UDS Navrongo and Wa campus, but still had their power on.
In his submission, the regional minister tried reaching the boss of VRA but his phone has been switched off.

This development if not well tackled will mare academic activities as the actions of aggrieved students was seen today to have ended abruptly academic work.

ECOWAS HALL threatened the administration that, if the power is not restored before 12am today, they’ll disrupt every academic activity on campus.

As it stands now, they have in their plans to storm VRA office.

We watch!

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Education

CSE not a foreign agenda

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It is exciting that more and more Ghanaians have become interested in engaging in discussions geared towards the development and transformation of our country.  The current discussion about Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) is a clear indication of how Citizens have taken ownership of their country and are shaping Government policy to help make our country a better place. It is a fact that we need a national consensus and support on every policy to have successful implementation. However, what worries me is that too many people, including highly respected personalities and intellectuals, are too quick to pass judgement and express preconceived opinion without sufficient information and misinformation.

In fact, according to Ghana AIDs Commission, whilst the rate of New Infections of HIV among Ghanaians has stabilized, Ghana has recorded an increase in infections among young people nationwide. There is currently an alarming increase in teenage pregnancy across the country, incidence of defilement, incest, force marriage, rape and other Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) are a daily occurrence. Girls are absenting themselves from school during menstruation due to lack of information and unavailable and inappropriate sanitary facilities.  All these and many other issues render the investment we are making on our youth unfruitful. These problems have gone beyond prayers, religion, culture and politics. There is a need to have a coordinated nationwide strategy to respond and solve our problems as a country. As a Peer Educator, I have encountered several pregnant adolescents who had sex just because they were told it will enlarge their buttocks. Young girls are being raped and the perpetuators are not reported or dealt with because they are either too powerful or the victims do not know that rape is a crime. We are losing several young girls through unsafe abortions.

If these problems are not foreign, why do we think a well thought strategy to solve them is a foreign agenda. I have seen the realities of our country and I agree with the general consensus that we must protect the future of our country by arming our youth with the right information to survive in these turbulent times.

Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) is a curriculum-based method of providing age appropriate, scientifically accurate and culturally sensitive information to enable young people, in-and-out of school the knowledge, attitude, skills and values to make appropriate and healthy choices. This implies that just as a class one student is not taught detailed chemistry, a 6year old child cannot be taught to wear a condom, in fact there is no condom size for them. There is accurate and appropriate information for different age groups. The curriculum being Culturally sensitive also means that CSE in the UK or USA is different from our CSE in Ghana; we must stop drawing too much inference from the situation in other countries. Though CSE is an international term, the national guidelines is a well taught local solution to our local problems. Let’s look beyond the symbols and the preconceptions to discussions on the existing document.

As stakeholders, we must seek the right information about the guidelines. We have to engage in a patriotic discussion devoid of political lenses and accepting the existence of our problems. Only then can we reach a consensus on how to combat the challenges we face.

By; Caesar Kaba Kogoziga(0545510713)

A CSE Facilitator

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