Lack of trained child care givers and resources are hindering progress of early childhood development (ECD) programmes in the country, Minister of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare Jean Kalilani has said.
The minister said this at a press conference in Lilongwe on Saturday ahead of this year’s National ECD Awareness week which starts today.
Kalilani observed that Malawi has 35 000 caregivers working in various ECD centres, adding that half of them are not trained and lack resources to operate efficiently.
“ECD centres are community-based in nature and face many challenges in service delivery. Caregivers also face many challenges that affect their work. They work in poor structures and use inadequate play materials, among other problems,” she explained.
To overcome these challenges, Kalilani urged all sectors in the country to support ECD services, saying if ECDs are to succeed and be sustainable, there is need for the participation of all sectors in society.
“I call upon the private sector, civil society, traditional leaders, religious leaders, parents and local volunteers to all work together to support government efforts to improve ECD services,” she said.