ECD centres invited to register for funding

Monday, May 28, 2012

Mbombela - Owners of Early Childhood Development (ECD) centres in Mpumalanga have been invited to register their businesses so they can get funding from government.

The invitation came from Health and Social Development MEC Clifford Mkasi during the provincial launch of Child Protection Week in Mbombela on Monday.

"The registration of ECD centres will ensure that all eligible children have access to ECD services that are rendered by our department. We need all qualifying children to access these services," said Mkasi.

The MEC said the department had already registered 46 205 children who are subsidised at the rate of R12 per child per day.

He said the subsidy also benefitted orphans and vulnerable children as well as children with disabilities.

"Although we don't know how many unregistered centres are there at the moment, we have registered 820 centres in the province," Mkasi said.

He said the department wanted to strengthen all centres to advance their vision to provide transformed, integrated, accessible and quality partial care in partnership with other role players.

"We want to make sure that our children have education at their early age because it is crucial," added Mkasi.

He said the department would visit two ECD centres and a child-headed household in around Barberton.

He said this week the department would focus mainly on creating awareness about the care and protection of children. "The issues that are critical to care and protection of children are foster care services, child and youth care centres," said Mkasi.

Child Protection Week, which seeks to raise awareness about protecting children from abuse, was launched nationally by President Jacob Zuma on Sunday.

"We call on parents, school teachers, church members and the general public to commit to the fight against child abuse, neglect and exploitation and provide an environment of love and happiness," said Mkasi.