Karma and her four-year-old son in Kajha Throm

Vendors in Ka-Ja Throm request for ECCD center for their kids

Parents who have vegetable stalls in Ka-Ja Throm, after being recently relocated from Centenary Farmer’s Market (CFM) in Thimphu are worried about their kids’ safety and engagement after the closure of the Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) center inside the CFM market.

More than 50 children, with age ranging from three to four years, were enrolled in the ECCD center since its opening four years ago. Also, many of the vegetable vendors are single mothers.

Tshering Yangzom, a mother of a four-year-old son, said her son was enrolled in the ECCD and was in safe hands. She did not have to worry about her son’s safety then. But now, with the closure of the ECCD center, she is always worried, and to make it worse, the stalls are near the river. So, therefore she fears that her four-year-old might go near the riverside while she attends to the customers.

Similarly, Karma also brings her four-year-old son with her in the stall every morning. She said having their kids in ECCD made them feel safe and they could also focus on their business.

She wishes to enroll her son in a private ECCD center, but being a single parent and selling cheese and butter is the only source of income, she said, and so she cannot afford to send her son to a private ECCD center. Even if she enrolls, the private ECCD centers are far from their workplace, and pick and drop will be difficult.

Now vendors’ kids are seen moving around and sometimes it is hard to find their kids too with so many people coming into Ka-Ja Throm. Some mothers have more than two kids and they are struggling. They said if the relevant agency can look into it or have any plans to open an ECCD center, it would help the parents and their kids, said Karma.

Tika, another vendor has the same worry that her four-year-old son might go to the riverside or on the roadside. She has to be very vigilant at all times, finding it hard to attend to the customers as well as her son.

Many parents await if there are any plans to reopen the ECCD center for their kids since all the parents are struggling and worried that if any unfortunate incident happens, said Tika.

Tshogpa Sangay who looks after the welfare of all the children in Ka-Ja Throm said most of the vendors in Ka-Ja Throm are single parents including herself, and selling vegetables and other items is the only source of income.

With the closure of the ECCD center in the CFM market, as it is under renovation, children are seen with smartphones throughout the day and as soon as the phone’s battery dies, children move around. Parents need to babysit and as well as attend to the customers which in the two months, all the parents have struggled with.

There has been no news so far on whether there will be a new ECCD center for kids. If the relevant agency could look into this issue or come up with a safer place or ECCD center, all the parents will be relieved, said Sangay.

She said parents even collected Nu 1000-2000 each for the maintenance of the ECCD center as they were unaware that the entire CFM was going to be renovated. They had no idea that even the ECCD center was to be closed.

Check Also

Disadvantaged youths excluded from College opportunities due to lack of marks and money

There are many questions about the future of youths who pass out from class 12 …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *