Transforming futures for child domestic workers

by Education for Change in Sylhet, Sylhet District, Bangladesh

Transforming futures for child domestic workers

£305

raised so far

+ est. £76.25 Gift Aid

9

supporters

Children should learn, not earn. Help us give child domestic workers like Rabiba the chance to go to school.

by Education for Change in Sylhet, Sylhet District, Bangladesh

Child domestic workers are the most vulnerable and excluded of working children, and the hardest to reach. Hidden behind the doors of their employers, they are an invisible workforce at the highest risk of abuse, exploitation and harm. We designed this unique project to teach them at their workplace, calling it the Doorstep Learning Project.

1617817365_tania.jpgTania was 9 years old when her mother took her out of school and sent her into domestic work to help earn money for her family of 8. It costs just £160 to give another child like Tania a second chance at education.

Specialist community teachers visit the children at their employer's home three times a week, where they learn literacy, numeracy and life skills. Being taught in small groups of 1-3 gives the children a more focused and intensive learning environment, and the first year we ran the project in 2019/20 resulted in higher progress levels than our classroom-based programme.

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With an amazing success rate of 54% of learners progressing away from child labour, we are raising funds to continue the project so that more child domestic workers can be given their right to an education and the chance to fulfil their potential.

  • £10 buys crucial education resources
  • £20 pays for nutritious snacks to combat malnutrition
  • £50 would provide family support to help lift them out of poverty
  • £100 would pay for a teacher for a year

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Education for Change gives working children in Bangladesh a second chance by providing education and support away from child labour and into state school or vocational training. Despite it being against the law, there are 3.45m working children in Bangladesh and COVID-19 is pushing more families into poverty which is driving more children into work to contribute to the household income. 

The children on our programmes learn literacy, numeracy and life skills with specialist community teachers three times a week. Many children are malnourished and have work-related injuries so we also feed them and provide medical care. It is a time when they enjoy a window of regular childhood and every child makes progress with their skills development. 

Family poverty lies at the root of child labour. To tackle this our field workers visit the family of every child on our programmes to assess their needs and organise  support into earning a sustainable income so they can care for their children and send them to school instead of work.

Local advocacy also promotes the importance of children’s education and child rights; in areas where Education for Change has a presence the number of children employed illegally typically drops by 35%.

Since 2013 nearly 1,500 of the most impoverished and vulnerable children have participated in our programmes, with 35% leaving work, enrolling in school or joining vocational training. This is a significant success that we're very proud of.

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