The stories of M’Afia II and Amma

In this AC I would like to tell you the stories of two young people with special needs.

These stories are based on PCC’s everyday practice. I would like to acquaint you with the kind of questions we are frequently confronted with in PCC.


M’Afia II

One night, a few years ago, the police and people from Social Welfare came to PCC. That day a girl had been found in Nkoranza, according to onlookers she had been dropped from a car and the car had driven off, but nobody was sure about anything.

Highly predictable of course was the subsequent question of Social Welfare and the police: could we accept this girl in our community? According to us a much too easy and hasty question.

Fortunately, the girl was able to speak and she mentioned the name of the town she originally came from. So, we urged them to first look into her case and try to trace this girl’s relatives.

Easier said than done, because the police and Social Welfare first said that they were not in the possession of a car and “maybe PCC was?”, next they did not have any petrol, “maybe PCC would be so kind to buy some?” and so on and so forth. These authorities lacked both decisiveness and motivation to trace these relatives.


Our policy is that we absolutely do not want to encourage relatives to drop a disabled child in Nkoranza “just like that”; that if so, such a child will be admitted more or less “evidently” into PCC. If things were so easy, probably more and more children would be dropped in Nkoranza.


Eventually, all efforts by the authorities to find any relatives came to naught. For a couple of years M’Afia II went to Shalom Special School, but during the holidays PCC was asked to accept her into the community. She fell between two stools.


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Because it became very clear that there would never ever be found a good solution for M’Afia II, we decided to admit her to PCC as a permanent resident. A difficult decision, but all for the sake of M’Afia II.



Last January we were visited by the police and Social Welfare again. Another girl with special needs who had been found in Nkoranza and she had even been in the possession of a bag full of clothes.

Again, we urgently requested the authorities to put real effort in tracing her relatives and who would have thought that: thanks to the tip from a policeman, a few days later it became apparent that the girl came from a village in the region of Techiman.

After her family had finally been found by the police, they declared that they ‘honestly did not know how Amma had come to Nkoranza, probably she had gotten into a car…out of the blue?”. Very improbable, but this was their side of the story.


So, we asked the family to take upon them the care for Amma again – of course in agreement with the authorities, however, soon after that the request came: perhaps Amma was permitted to come to the sheltered workshop except for the holidays…?


In Amma’s case we have also reflected upon what would be best for her and that is why we have eventually agreed upon her coming to the sheltered workshop, though for a period of observation.


We do understand that in Ghana it is not easy for families to give good care to children with special needs for years on end. Besides, they are in no way supported by the government, they are completely on their own.

Notwithstanding, the government of Ghana finds it unacceptable as well that parents are dropping a child somewhere – “just like that” – and we will certainly appeal to the authorities concerned and point out their duties!