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Examining the Disparities in Access to Social Intervention Programmes among Foster and Non Foster Children in Rural Ghana- A case study of Tain District

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Harm done to children in their formative years can be extremely devastating and difficult to reverse. The government of Ghana has therefore implemented forty four (44) pro-poor social intervention programmes to bridge the gap between the advantaged and the disadvantaged persons including rural children in the country. The objective of this qualitative case study was to examine the disparities in access to three  of  these  interventions (The National Health Insurance Scheme –NHIS, The Free School Feeding Program-SFP and The Capitation Grant to Schools-CG) among foster and non foster children in three rural communities (Yabraso, Fabewoso and Hiamankyene) in the Tain District of Brong Ahafo Region. Access was conceptualized in the study to mean availability and utilization (benefits). Using data from both primary and secondary sources, results of the study indicate that foster children in the communities consistently have lower access to all the three interventions.  The disparities arose not so much from the availability of the interventions to the children (SFP—5.6%, CG—0%, NHIS—48.94%) but from their utilization (SFP-94.4%, CG—100%, NHIS—51.06%). The paper identified eleven major barriers that account for the disparities and also offered thirteen tangible strategies in addressing the disparities. The paper concludes with a recommendation to government to formalize foster care system in Ghana as the best way to reduce the level of disparities in access to interventions between foster and non foster children in rural Ghana.


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