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ECCE seminar – Better family-work balance to increase women’s participation in paid formal work

Centre-based Childcare project Ongoing

Good Samaritan Montessori ECCE Centre

The Concept

The project addresses the acute scarcity of quality care and education for toddlers, a gap that severely limits women’s access to work and further education. Launched in May 2020, the Good Samaritan Ethiopia (GSE) centre offers top-tier services primarily to children of vocational trainees and single mothers in the vicinity. The facility, crafted by expert architects and nursery professionals, stands as a beacon of development and safety for the young attendees.

My child has received a high-quality feeding program, and as a result of the organization’s services, his physical development has improved, his behavior has become more stable, and his demeanor has changed to a more welcoming one, and I have been given the opportunity to work because I have free time. Meseret, mother of son in the centre

Meseret, mother of a child in the centre

The Challenge

The necessity of the project stems from a dire societal need: in Ethiopia, a staggering 99% of working mothers, many of whom are quite young, cannot afford childcare. They are thus dependent on unreliable and untrained care services to work when family networks are unavailable. Furthermore, as children from low-income areas like Akaki often struggle more at school, the quality service ensures a higher degree of school-readiness.

The Solution

GSE’s centre provides a nurturing and stimulating environment based on Montessori pedagogy, which fosters independence, empathy, and a passion for learning. Additionally, the provision of two daily meals has eradicated malnutrition among attendees. Previously undernourished children are declared healthy, thanks to regular nurse visits that ensure ongoing health monitoring. GSE is a model of holistic child development in Ethiopia that offers a tangible solution to several pressing issues.

30 children currently in the centre

The centre continues at the same capacity as when it started.

12 children has “graduated” to kindergarten

These children reached the age of enrolment into “KG”, which is pre-school for children aged 4-5 years and is a public service. A project evaluation will establish to what extent their experience in a quality ECCE centre helped them settle easier in KG. 

100% of mothers are working

All mothers of the children in the centre are working.

21% of mothers got their first job

9 out of 42 mothers did not work before their child started at Good Samaritan, while the remaining 33 already had some employment. However, a project evaluation will determine to what extent the childcare has increased their working time, productivity, and/or income.

73% of parents are paying monthly fees

Good Samaritan has successfully started to charge those parents who can pay something. The average payment is 330 ETB per month (66 NOK), which is 10-20% of an average full-time job in the Akaki area.

100% of centre staff have received specialised ECCE training

All staff are trained by PfC, in our various programmes. Even the cook and nurse have specialised training in ECCE.

This centre is very important for the community. Mothers can come and deliver their
children here, and they can go to work or attend vocational training here at Good Samaritan
Ethiopia. The children are safe here. They get food and we take good care of them. The
children learn to be self-confident and ready for life

Good Samaritan employee

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