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Child care needs of low income mothers in less developed countries : A summary report of research in six countries in Asia and Latin America

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  • Child care needs of low income mothers in less developed countries
  • League of Women Voters
  • United States Agency for International Development


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Title Child care needs of low income mothers in less developed countries
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Sub Title

A summary report of research in six countries in Asia and Latin America

Material Type Reports
Author(English)

League of Women Voters

Publisher

[Washington, D.C.]:United States Agency for International Development

Date 1979
Series Title; No Other USAID Supported Study, Document
Pages 90
Subject Country Brazil(Americas)
Dominican Republic(Americas)
Peru(Americas)
Sri Lanka(Asia and Pacific)
Malaysia(Asia and Pacific)
South Korea(Asia and Pacific)
Language English
File Type Link
Subject Social Development < Health
Social Development < Gender
Holding United States Agency for International Development

Abstract

The need to expand women's roles to include contribution to household finances in addition to caring for a family is impaired by the lack of options for child care available to women. This report summarizes studies conducted on the effect of women's income-generating activities on child care patterns, health, nutrition, and alternative approaches to child care in six developing countries -- Korea, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Brazil, Dominican Republic, and Peru. While all the countries are agriculture-based, Korea and Brazil are industrialized. The majority of the women surveyed were wives and mothers, had an average of two to four children, were poor, and were currently employed or wished to work. The results showed that child care responsibilities, lack of marketable skills and employment opportunities, and cultural role limitations lessen women's participation in the work force, although participation of low-income women was higher in the six countries than the countries' national averages; child care is handled mainly by female family members due to a lack of awareness of the services offered by child care centers and preschools; malnutrition among children less than 6 years old was common to all the countries; many women demonstrated little knowledge of the causes of child diseases, the value of immunization, or proper nutrition; women's earnings had little effect on the overall well-being of their families; and a comprehensive child care policy and program is a viable alternative for the needs of low-income mothers and children. From these findings it was recommended that national and international agencies make child care and women's needs a priority; alternative forms of child care such as half-day preschools and industry-based child care facilities be developed, with a focus on disease prevention, child nutrition and health needs, and breast-feeding which is in general decline; vocational training be offered to women and information on job prospects for women be disseminated through mass media; and legislation governing women's participation in the labor force be modified to better meet their needs. Appended are footnotes, a list of in-country child care programs, and the research methodology used.