By Lydia Gichuki
Uthabiti Africa, an organization that accelerates early childhood care and development in Africa, has asked the government to give proper recognition and legislation of childcare workers in the country.
It continued to say this category of workers, mostly those working in informal spaces faces a myriad of challenges suchgender-basedased violence, sexual abuse, refusal of payment by employers, human trafficking, underpayment and psychological abuse.
This they said is as a result of lack of definite support systems to address the issues thus putting workers in harm way.
In addition to this, the organization said lack of adequate skills and opportunities for capacity building and training results in these workers having little to no room for career advancement in the childcare industry.
Further, it was noted that many workers lack access to financial and economic empowerment, in this, pursuance of formal training becomes almost impossible.
They said nannies play a key role in driving the economy by making sure women and men can work and contribute to local economies while assured of the safety and comfort of their children.
The organization noted the hat majority of working women in Kenya depend on childcare providers to take care of their children leaving them with the responsibility for the child’s physical, emotional, and social development.
According to a study the organization conducted between 2019 and 2020 women comprise of 91.1 per cent of the childcare workforce in Kenya.
Lack of childcare services for women especially in the informal settlements can make them not engage in meaningful economic activities thus taking away their economic potential.
Despite this important role they play, they said, childcare work is naturally categorized in the lowest socio-economic stratum of society.
It recommended that more awareness should be created on the critical role played by childcare givers and solutions designed on a basis to solve the problems in the sector.
They added that society need to shift there mindset shift and attitudes towards care givers and call for proper registration and legislation of the industry.
Photo credit; Pexel