The recently opened Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) centre and crèche facility at Wengkhar Agriculture Research and Development Centre (ARDC) in Mongar have benefited close to 40 parents.

The ECCD was opened at ARDC Wengkhar due to large number of employees at the centre.

Of the 39 beneficiary parents, 36 are the staff of ARDC Wengkhar and three are from the Wengkhar community.

ARDC’s agriculture supervisor, Lungki, has a 6-year-old daughter at the ECCD. She said that before the centre was established she did not have anyone to look after her daughter and had to take her daughter to work.

“She had to stay in the sun with me, which was unhealthy,” said Lungki.

There are about 80 employees at the ARDC Wengkhar today. The centre has 41 children; 15 are at the crèche centre.

The ECCD has one facilitator, Namgay Lhamo, taking care of 26 children.

Two employees of ARDC Wengkhar are today also working as temporary caregivers at the crèche centre.

ARDC Wengkhar’s programme director, Lhap Dorji, said that National Commission for Women and Children (NCWC) trained the two caregivers.

He added that ARDC Wengkhar requested for two caregivers and one more facilitator at the centre. “We hope to get full-time caregivers.”

The centre was established with fund support from European Union-Climate Change Project through ministry of agriculture. NCWC provided educational materials worth Nu 500,000 to the centre.

Lhap Dorji said that the centre was to provide better care for children of the staff and the community in line with promoting women and child friendly work place.

Phurpa Lhamo