Childcare in Crisis
Working mothers living in East Africa’s informal settlements (urban slums) face a difficult decision of where to keep their young children during the working day. As a result, they are typically left with one of three options:
Leaving children home alone for up to 6 hours of the day
Pulling an older sibling (usually an adolescent girl) out of school to take care of a younger sibling
Dropping off their child at an unlicensed, congested home-based “babycare” with an untrained caregiver for a fee
In all 3 cases, the healthy growth & development of the child is severely compromised.
Without supportive care in their early years, these children enter school with physical & learning disabilities that result in them being locked in an intergenerational cycle of poverty that is near impossible to escape. In addition, their mothers are unable to hold consistent employment, as they lack reliable childcare services during the working day.
As rural-urban migration trends continue, this problem is only expected to get worse…