Enhancing Women’s Market Participation and Child Development through the Crèche Programme in Tharaka Nithi County: A Randomised Controlled Trial

Childcare is often cited as one of the reasons that limit female labour force participation. (Morrissey, 2017 and Ansel, 2016). Childcare, which is mostly under the jurisprudence of women often leaves women with limited time for viable economic activities (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Beta Labs. 2021). To address this challenge Tharaka Nithi County Government established the crèche Programme in Chuka Market to relieve mothers of child care burden and give them time and space to participate in viable and productive economic activities. This study will evaluate the impact of the crèche programme on women’s labour force participation and on child development using an RCT approach.

The key partners and stakeholders for this study are: Economic Growth Center, Yale University, the Ministries of Public Service and Gender, Health, Labour and Social Services, and Devolution and Planning. Other stakeholders include the Council of Governors, Chuka University, Plan International, Caritas Kenya, and the Inter-Faith Network Group. The RCT design and the landscaping report will be completed over the next six months and RCT implementation will start in October 2021. The policy outcome of the study is to scale up the crèche intervention to at least two counties by 2025.