Safe and Quality Child Development Centers for Children in Nuwara Eliya
Children in Nuwara Eliya now safely spend quality time in upgraded Child Development Centers while their mothers are engaged in tea plucking. Eight Centers on tea estates refurbished by Save the Children through Plantation Human Development Trust (PHDT) was recently handed over to the community. Hosting around 800 children, the centers represent the importance of having a communal and safe space for mothers and children and also as learning centers for the mothers.
Children and their parents in front of a refurbished Child Developed Center
The opening ceremonies were attended by many of the mothers and fathers working on the tea estates and children. With speeches of congratulations from William Lynch, Country Director of Save the Children and Chairman and Director of the PHDT, the children were especially keen to show off their celebratory dancing and performative skills at the ceremonies.
The purpose of these centers are to directly address the issues of poor maternal and child health in the tea estates. Historically, the health and nutrition of women and the children living on the tea estates are low with many mothers suffering from high rates of anemia and severe cases of stunting amongst their children. The centers are therefore used to raise the awareness and knowledge of the estates mothers and fathers on good nutritional practices.
The significance of this project is to further the creation of a sustainable standard of maternal and child health, nutrition and care on Sri Lanka’s tea estates. By placing good nutrition at the heart of the standard, Save the Children seeks to establish a Mother and Child Friendly Ethical Tea Certification designed to make good nutrition, good business throughout Sri Lanka’s tea industry.
Written by Alexandra Williams (Intern, Program Development) & Photos by Brett Phillips (Volunteer, Program Development)