Campus Daycare Eases Women’s Burden

By Misael Lemmma

The burden on mothers in raising children holds them back from moving forward to empower themselves economically. Many mothers who stepped up the ladder of career in many places relinquish their positions to care their kids at home.

But nowadays new approach is surfacing around the public sector. Few exemplary institutions have started to establish daycare centers on their premises.

Bahir Dar University is one among these. Dr. Almaz Gizew, Directress of Gender Office at the University, explained that the daycare is the result of a research conducted by the Office. It has also been born out of series of discussions with women staffs in the University.

Our study has also taken into consideration the fact that care given to children during the first three and five years would have impacts on their health which in turn impacts on the University’s performance directly and indirectly.

In addition to this, the research has found out that most caregivers parents hire are unskilled, if not underage; thus, the kids usually remain unsafe, according to Dr. Almaz. The university eventually decided to come up with solution.

“We did not rush to establish the daycare, but emulated pertinent experiences from reputable organizations such as SOS and Midroc Ethiopia (Private NGO and Business group respectively). In addition, the Office has consulted various child relating science professionals.

The Daycare finally commenced services in 2016 accepting 30 children from women teachers, top officers and 13 from administrative workers, she said. “The majority of the children were under the age of two.”

There, children receive much helpful care for their growth and health.

Due to this task, the University has benefited much as mothers invest their full time to discharge their responsibilities.

 Women parents are observed to have an interest for more work challenges from being delivered from the spirit of avoiding additional responsibilities. They are more active and happier than they were before.

“I myself was not able to participate in research undertakings prior to the Center’s establishment, but now I have published two researches in reputable journals and I am expecting the other three to be published pretty soon,” Dr. Almaz stressed.

On the assessment made on the importance of the daycare, 46.3 percent responded that it has strongly prompted teachers to participate in research and other community engagements, according to her.

ethiopia campus daycare

The finding also shows that the Center has brought immense advantages for mothers in improving their incomes and education. The difference is also observed on the children. The children appear to be healthy, sociable and strong. They look to have proper growth both mentally and physically.

What is unique in the success of Bahir Dar University is its commitment to employ available inputs and establish a daycare without such an exaggerated spending. The community was very positive toward the daycare. One indication to this could be the seventeen different organizations which have drawn lessons from the Center.

Of which, three organizations have immediately opened a daycare center following the University. “Almost all Universities have taken our experiences after the Ministry of Education selected Bahir Dar University as a role model among the First Generation Universities (a name given to group of oldest Universities in Ethiopia).”

Wollega University has followed our footstep and opened a similar Center, he added.

The University has planned to expand the service in all its campuses, she revealed.


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