Protection and education of young domestic workers
The program to prevent violence against children and young domestic workers continued in 2020 through a number of actions:
Thanks to funding from the Croix du Sud Foundation, a new project was opened in Togo: prevention and awareness activities on the risks of underage girls working were carried out in the north of the country. Agents have been trained to meet with the employers of these young girls and ensure that their rights are respected. These agents also go to the villages where the young girls come from to explain to community leaders, parents and girls the risks related to immigration to the big cities and work as domestic servants.
IN RWANDA AND DRC
With the support of the NIF Foundation, IDAY-DRC/Kivu and IDAY-Rwanda continued their regional program for the protection of young domestic workers. Two training centers, one in Uvira (South Kivu province), the other in Kigali, offer training to young people of working age who wish to become professional domestic workers. This approach is producing very encouraging results, both from the point of view of the domestic worker and the employer. A study was thus conducted among young graduates to obtain precise data in terms of socio-professional impact. The results of this survey are expected in early 2021!
A partnership has been established with the VET Toolbox and Enabel (the Belgian technical cooperation) to develop a specific training curriculum in “housework”. The objective is to formalize the profession of domestic worker, in order to offer on the one hand better employment conditions to young adults, and on the other hand a better quality service to employers. The professionalization of the profession also helps to reduce situations of abuse and the recruitment of children.
Awareness-raising has continued through community radio and television programs, meetings with employers, distribution of awareness materials, etc.
Advocacy activities for official recognition of the profession of domestic worker and the prohibition of child labor also continued under the umbrella of all other actions.
The construction of the training center for young domestic workers in Uvira, South Kivu province, also continued in 2020 thanks to the long-standing support of Soroptimist Belgium. This construction allows the team to be more financially independent and no longer depend on regular rent increases. Every year, dozens of young people benefit from training in literacy, tailoring and culinary arts at the center, thus strengthening their skills.
With the support of the NIF Foundation, a program for the pacific resolution of conflicts between employers and domestic workers, initiated in 2018, has helped raise awareness among more than 500 domestic workers.
The project set up 3 radio programs of 20 minutes each, in a local radio station The Koch fm. This radio station serves 40% of Nairobi’s population, reaching more than one million people. It serves 19 major slums in Nairobi. Through these broadcasts, we hope to reach a large number of young domestic workers and pass on our prevention messages, concerning their rights and the existing mechanisms for peaceful conflict resolution.
Finally, IDAY-Kenya has accompanied several legal cases opposing domestic workers to their employers.