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Sub-Saharan Africa is Missing Progressive Early Childhood Development Strategies

Paid childcare has been largely ignored by academia, government policy makers and donors in and beyond Africa. The World Health Organisation recently published its first ever guideline for early childhood development. Although this document includes a lot of valuable information, it – and the research is it based on – largely focuses on improving parental care. This overlooks the fact that more and more families seem to be using paid childcare in Africa. One recent study found that nearly half of working parents, and even one in five unemployed parents in a Nairobi slum, regularly used paid childcare. A few studies have shown that the quality of this paid care is often crowded and poor, especially for children growing up in informal urban settlements or slums.