Funding model in development for ECD Sector and Safety Nets

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Cute little boy playing with a railroad train toy

 

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten — A funding model for the Early Childhood Development Sector (children 4 weeks to 4 years) and Safety Nets (afterschool programs) is being investigated and developed with key stakeholders and professionals. The Department of Youth, MECYS, in its efforts to strengthen both the ECD sector and Safety Nets, requested technical assistance from UNICEF the Netherlands to develop a sustainable and equitable funding model that would promote inclusion and equity to these services for more children.

As part of this activity, Public Finance Expert Mr. Elinor Bajraktari will be on Sint Maarten from November 29th to December 10th, to conduct a series of interviews and field visits with stakeholders from the ECD Sector, Safety Nets, funding agencies and relevant government departments in the ministries of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport (ECYS), Public Health, Social Development and Labour (VSA), and Finance.

The funding model will propose options to increase public sector support for ECD centers and afterschool programs through subsidies to the private sector. The funding model could also include a tuition waiver system for vulnerable students and targeting mechanisms such as paying specific attention to gender disparities and disabilities. The models proposed must meet the requirement of being evidence-based, cost-effective, sustainable and predictable.

Additionally, Mr. Bajraktari will work on the development and operationalization of a data collection strategy for the systematic collection, analysis, and dissemination of data on ECD and Safety Nets on Sint Maarten.

The development of the proposal for this funding model is part of the ‘Child Resilience and Protection Project’ (CRPP). The Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport (MECYS), with technical support from UNICEF the Netherlands, is executing the CRPP, a multi-faceted approach to building child resilience and strengthening the systems and institutions for child protection. The project is funded by the Sint Maarten Recovery, Reconstruction and Resilience Trust-fund, managed by the World Bank.

Persons working in the ECD Sector and/or an Afterschool Program who would like to contribute to this data-gathering mission can contact Ms. Shanica Romney, sromney@unicef.nl to participate in interviews and request more information.

Persons can also share their feedback directly via online surveys until Wednesday, December 15th 2021:
– Sint Maarten Day Care Survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/HLF7J5H
– Sint Maarten After-school Survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/5725Q8T

The information collected will be used to formulate the proposal for potential funding model options.