Caregivers in Traditional Authorities (T/As) Khongoni, Kalolo and Kabudula have expressed excitement with the government’s decision to introduce K15, 000 monthly stipends, stressing that this is a huge motivation to them.
George Sam Betha, one of the caregivers in T/A Khongoni, said the stipend will help them improve their social and economic livelihoods.
Betha made the remarks over the weekend when Action Aid Malawi (AAM) donated bicycles, tablets and umbrellas to caregivers who had completed their training at Nsalu Teacher Development Centre (TDC).
“We are very grateful to the government. This is way to go in improving the quality of services in ECD centres,” he said.
AAM Head of Business Development, Yandura Chipeta, said her organization has set aside K600 million for the implmementation of the School Readiness Initiative (SRI) in Lilongwe Rural, Balaka and Mulanje.
Chipeta said the initiative is being financed by Rodger Federer Foundation and is designed to improve the quality of Early Childhood Development (ECD) services in the three districts.
“This is a six-year successor project of the 10-year Comprehensive Early Childhood Development Programme (ECD), which was implemented in Chitipa, Rumphi, Lilongwe, Dedza, Mchinji, Ntchisi, Phalombe, Neno, Nsanje and Machinga. The previous intervention focused on 80 model Community Based Child Care Centres (CBCCs) and 400 satellite CBCCs throughout the country with interventions aimed at improving the lives and wellbeing of poor and vulnerable children by promoting access to quality and sustainable ECD services,” she said.
Chipeta disclosed that SRI is aligned to the Sustainable Development Goal 4.2 and aims at helping children to be ready for school and schools ready for children while ensuring smooth transition.
She said for the first time in Malawi, SRI is focusing on creation of specific pre-primary classes in CBCCs, improving the quality of pre-primary education, which is the one-year pre-primary education before transitioning to grade one.
“Hence, capacity building of the caregivers, teachers and CBCC committees is a critical component of this intervention,” said Chipeta.
She said in order to address mobility and communication challenges, the organization is distributing bicycles, tablets and umbrellas to all the mentor caregivers.
Chairperson of the Lilongwe District Council, Councillor Luciano Botoman, described the donation as a timely motivation for the caregivers.
Botoman added that the bicycles would ease mobility challenges, which the mentor caregivers used to face when conducting monitoring and evaluation of the performance of the CBCCs in T/As Khongoni, Kalolo and KabudulaFollow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :