Mchinji, November 18, Mana: Director of Planning and Development (DPD) for Mchinji district council, Noel Dakamau has expressed concern the increased number of children child labour despite government and other stakeholders’ efforts to eliminate child labour.
The DPD noted that there is a gap in coordinating child labour activities being implemented by various stakeholders including some government offices in the district.
He said this during a meeting on Wednesday when CARE Malawi briefed the District Child Labour Committee (DCLC) on the status of “Protect Future: Ending Child Labour in the Agriculture Industry in Malawi (PROCLAIM) project”.
Dakamau said that a lot of initiatives are being undertaken to address poverty and food insecurity issues which are also contributing to the increase of child labour. Hence calls for combined efforts are needed from all sectors and other existing structures to end child labour.
Senior Programmes Manager for CARE Malawi, Anderson Kumpolota said the workshop was meant to strengthen the capacity of DCLC and other supporting communities to be able to prevent child labour.
“We are here to make sure that DCLC is vibrant to the extent that it should have proper structures from lower level just like in other sectors so that when the project phases out, the progress that was made to eliminate child labour should not end together with it.”
“Projects are meant to address a problem and most have a short time span before phasing out and yet the problem might still be in existence. Hence, we want to strengthen government and agriculture systems or structures for prevention of child labour,” Kumpolota said.
Project Manager for Salvation Army in Mchinji, Haswell Jim said the workshop is a success as it has helped to sharpen the capacity as well as coordination on how to protect children and prevent them from engaging in child labour.
“From my experience as a person who deals with child trafficking, communities are important in both perpetuating child labour and reducing it. With the strategies, we have gained from the workshop and combined efforts from the stakeholders of DCLC, we will have yielding results in ending child labour in the district.” Jim said
PROCLAIM Project is being undertaken by CARE Malawi in partnership with Microloan Foundation and Rays of Hope in the districts of Mchinji as well as Ntchisi. It is funded by the Elimination of Child Labour in Tobacco Growing (ECLT) Foundation, with an aim to support Government of Malawi efforts in ending child labour in the agriculture Industry. It will be implemented for a period of 4.5 years from January 2020 to June 2024.