This project will give pre-school children in rural Ethiopian communities the best possible start in life through holistic support for their physical, social, emotional and cognitive development through creation and support of Early Childhood Care & Development centres.
What’s covered in project cost?
To ensure that that all children, aged 4 to 6 years, participate in quality early learning programs that promote the development of physical, cognitive, social, and emotional and language skills. Your funds will go towards program areas like:
- Supporting the establishment of Early Childhood Care & Development centres (ECCD centres) and equipping them with learning materials to support early learning and development.
- Developing and promoting training materials and modules for early learning amongst care givers.
- Supporting accessibility of water supplies and sanitation facilities to the early learning centres.
- Providing education and playing materials for the children
- Promoting the publication and distribution of culture friendly story books and other supplementary ECCD materials.
- Parents and guardians take action to improve the development (including care, learning, and protection) of children ages 0 to 8 years.
- All children, aged 4 to 6 years, participate in quality early learning programs that promote the development of physical, cognitive, social, and emotional and language skills.
- Effective school and community supports are in place to ensure successful transitions to primary school
- Government and non-government actors in ECCD work in partnership to ensure the development and protection of children at community, district, region and national level
Background into the current situation
Ethiopia is one of the poorest countries in the world where many children face chronic food shortages and where poverty deprives them of their fundamental rights. Although the Ethiopian government recognises the value and importance of ECCD, it does not have the resources to support early childhood services and activities and relies on organisations like Plan and the private sector to do so.
While preschool has become more popular and accessible in urban areas in recent years – with about 90% of the country’s preschools located in the capital Addis Ababa – most are privately owned and business oriented which means that the poorest and most marginalised children miss out. Preschools focus on children aged 4 to 6 years (the 0–3 age group is not catered for) and are usually a downward extension of primary school where there is no free play and rote learning is commonplace (teachers lecture, students listen). Children in remote and rural areas are particularly disadvantaged when it comes to ECCD, with limited access to services. Their parents have a general lack of understanding of child development and little awareness of ECCD; there is a shortage of preschools; low enrolment rates; a lack of training for ECCD facilitators; and limited age-appropriate learning materials.
Through this project, Plan will work to prepare children for school and for later life by supporting culturally-relevant, age-appropriate early childhood activities, and by encouraging communities to become involved in the development of their children.
Photo: A girl learns her alphabet at community-managed preschool centre.
What is Plan doing?
For this project Plan is introducing the Community-Led Action for Children (CLAC) approach, which has been successfully used by our ECCD team in Uganda since 2009. The project seeks to ensure that 100% of children aged 0 to 8 in targeted, high poverty areas achieve child wellbeing indicators and success at school as a result of high quality ECCD support.
In Ethiopia our activities will target rural and remote areas, introducing quality ECCD activities so that children have positive and enjoyable experiences in which to learn and develop. We will introduce a parenting program aimed at every family and every child, helping parents to understand their role in their child’s development while at the same time ensuring that 0–3 year-olds no longer miss out on early childhood services. The project will empower parents, providing them with a forum to get together and learn from each other, building on positive parenting practices and avoiding negative ones. The 0–3 age group will be catered for through informal home-based playgroups; children aged 4 to 6 will have access to low-cost, high-quality ECCD centres; and there will be a preschool to primary school transition program to help children prepare for school and schools prepare for children.
The project will also focus on making primary schools more welcoming for children in the early years (ages 6 to 8) with activities such as welcome days and exchange visits. In addition, we will provide training and support for ECCD caregivers and work with different levels of government to advocate for increased support and resources for ECCD.
The program also incorporates an advocacy agenda, aiming to build partnerships with government and non government actors in ECCD to ensure the development and protection of children at community, district and regional level.
How was this funded?
Thanks to hundreds of tiny donations from these online businesses and their customers.
- World Nomads UK
- Travel Insurance Direct AU
Plan works at the grassroots level in the developing world, to empower communities to overcome poverty, so that children have the opportunity to reach their full potential. We encourage children to express their views and be actively involved in improving their communities. Together with our supporters, Plan is a catalyst for change, free from political and religious agendas, existing only for the sake of children.
Plan works in over 49 developing countries. We unite, empower and inspire people around the world to champion every child’s right to grow up healthy, safe and educated.