The Department of Social Welfare and Community development, initially known as Social Welfare (DSW) and housing was established in 1946 and derived its mandate from statutory orders that made it responsible for social services encompassing health, housing, education and agriculture. Over the years its mandate has been redefined under various ministries. Presently the Head Office of the DSW is an integral part of the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection. Also with the promulgation of LI 1961, the Department of Community Development and Department Of Social Welfare at the local level have now been merged to become a Department of the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies with the new name Department of Social Welfare and Community Development.
The core mandates of the department per the L.I 1961 are as follows:
a. Assist the Assembly in the formulation and implementation of Social welfare and Community Development policies within the framework of national policy.
b. Facilitate community-based rehabilitation of persons with disabilities
c. Assist and facilitate the provision of community care services which include:
i. Registration of persons with disabilities
ii. Assistance to the aged
iii. Personal social welfare services
iv. Hospital welfare services
v. Assistance to street children, child survival and development
vi. Socio-economic and emotional stability in families
d. Facilitate the registration and supervision of Non-governmental organizations and their activities within the municipality
e. Assist in the organisation of community development programmes to improve and enrich rural life (Income generation for rural women)
f.Provision of vocational training for the poor and disabled, teaching deprived or rural women home management and child care
The Department Social Welfare and Community Development of the Tema West Municipal Assembly exists to facilitate the mobilization and use of available human and material resources to improve the living standards of individuals, groups, families and communities within the Municipality as well as prevent and respond to social exclusion and mal adjustment within the context of national and sub national development efforts. The Department under Tema West is made up of nineteen (19) staff, which consists of a female Head of Department, twelve (12) other female staff and seven (7) males.
STRATEGIC DIRECTION OF SOCIAL WELFARE AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT DEPARTMENT
Vision:To take the lead in integrating the disadvantaged, vulnerable and excluded in mainstream of development
Mission: To work in partnership with individuals, families, groups and communities to improve their social wellbeing through their active participation in promoting development with equity.
The Department is made up of two main sections namely the Social welfare section and the Community Development section. The functions of each section are outlined as follows:
FUNCTIONS SPECIFIC TO THE SOCIAL WELFARE SECTION
1. Support families and individuals in the handling of Non - Child Maintenance cases, Child abuse, Custody, Paternity and Family Reconciliation;
2. Facilitate the implementation of the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) activities;
3. Supervise and monitor the setting up and operations of residential homes;
4. Conduct and write social investigation report for the purposes of licencing and compliance of the National standards for residential homes;
5. Handle domestic violence cases and spousal abuse;
6. Supervise, monitor and facilitate the registration of Day Care Centers;
7. Supervise and monitor the implementation of Social Intervention programmes eg. School Feeding Program;
8. To intervene in cases of children in Worst Forms of Child Labour;
9. Remove, Rehabilitate and Reintegrate Street Children;
10. Rescue, Rehabilitate and Reintegrate victims of Trafficking in Persons (TIPs)
11. Provide alternative care for children without parental care such as foster care and adoption;
12. Identify and Register Persons With Disabilities (PWDs);
13. Conduct physical, medical and psychosocial need assessments;
14.Facilitate livelihood empowerment programmes for PWDs;
15.Offer psycho-social counseling to affected persons with disabilities and HIV-AIDS etc;
16.Provide hospital welfare services;
17.Undertake sensitization and social education on social problems;
18.Undertake probation and prison after care services;
19. Make representation at the juvenile and family courts;
20. Prepare and submit social enquiry reports;
21. Identify, register and keep update data on Persons with Disabilities
22.Engage in need assessment of PWD and their significant others
23. Assist in the rehabilitation of PWDs and promote job placement
24. Offer general counselling services to PWD and their families
25. Advocate and lobby for the social inclusion of disadvantaged individuals and groups including children, women, elderly, PWDs, PLWHAs
26. Engage in Juvenile and family court sittings
FUNCTIONS SPECIFIC TO THE COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT SECTION
1. Promote and provide alternative livelihood empowerment skills for the deprived in the communities
2. Promote entrepreneurial skills, business support services and linkages to financial institutions to beneficiaries of skills training programme
3. Provide avenue for other institutions to implement community development programmes
4. Mobilise and train voluntary leaders and community-based organisations as change agents in the communities
5. Undertake community entry processes for programme initiation, monitoring and evaluation;
6. Organise weekly adult education programmes
7. Hold community briefing sessions on the role of the Assembly and its Departments with key stakeholders and community members;
8. Identify, maintain and update data on various groups in the community;
9. Conduct community needs assessment;
10. Conduct community surveys and compile profiles;
11. Assist in the mobilization of resources for community development interventions;
12. Mobilise community members for communal labour and self-help projects
13. Teach women home management, child care and entrepreneurial skills
14. Organise community members for the collection of inputs for the preparation of budget and Medium-Term Development Plan
15. Provide technical support to development partners
16. Compile activity, quarterly and annual reports
• The Department has so far registered one hundred and twenty-seven persons with disabilities.
• As part of monitoring and inspection, the Department has so far visited about fifty (50) early childhood development centres within the Municipality.
• Over five hundred and fifty (550) school children and eighty (80) community members were sensitized on good hand wash and hygiene practices to help prevent diseases in communities
• Community members have been sensitized on the need to sleep under treated nets to help prevent malaria
• 14 home visits have been carried out.28 households comprising 7 male & 21 female were sensitized on the following:
Awareness raising on the launch of the newly created assembly. Home Management Laser Fever Hygiene savings
• The department collaborated with the Community Health Adolescent Unit to sensitize 1108 school children on the abuse of Tramadol.
• 550 school children and community members were also sensitised on the importance of handwashing and appropriate ways in handwashing to avoid infections and diseases.
CHILD PROTECTION/ CHILD WELFARE SERVICE
Day – Care registration/ Monitoring
Shelter/reunification of children
Probation and court work – Adjudication of cases (Maintenance, family welfare, Custody, Access and Paternity)
Reunification and support for misplaced person (Adults)
Citizen’s Advice Bureau
GROUP AND COMMUNITY ACTIVITIES
Demonstration on income generating activities such as cosmetology, fashion/design and sanitizer production.
Weekly Group meetings with community members.
Registration and Renewal of Non – Governmental Organizations.
Registration and support to persons with Disabilities (PWDs)
Monitoring of Person with (PWDs)
Disbursement of 3% common fund to Persons with Disabilities (PWDs)
Sensitization of market women on Negative effects of child labour.
Bi-monthly disbursement of funds to LEAP beneficiaries
Health screening for the Aged
Handwashing sensitization/ vocational skills training for women
Other Welfare Activities
Adolescent health care
Screening of misplaced and abandoned children
Dry Food Distribution PWDs COVID – 19 lock down
Donations of face masks to school children around Texpo market
Community sensitization on COVID - 19
Contact Us- Vulnerable Hotline- 0552230572/0559180559