Today we have visited two community-based early childhood development (ECD) centres in Xiangtan County. The first one was in Xianfeng community, located in the middle of Xiangtan County, and it serves three other communities nearby. The other one was in San Fu village, located south-west of Qing Shanqiao township of Xiangtan County. Both ECD centres provide many services including volunteer-led games for parents and children, storybook borrowing, parent-child free play, parent classes and focus group discussions.
Located at She Bu township, Xiangtan County, Xianfeng village has 458 households and a total population of 1,886. There are 82 children aged 0-3. Among those children there are 30 who have been ‘left behind’ and are cared for by their grandparents, as their parents have migrated to other areas to find work.
There are five volunteers in this ECD centre including schoolteachers and ordinary villagers. They are with high enthusiasm all the time.
We prepared a lot soft toys for the children at the ECD centre before starting off. The ECD centre is open from Monday to Friday, and organises activities every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, including reading, games and class training, which more than 3,832 people benefit from.
San Fu village is located south-west of Qing Shanqiao township of Xiangtan County. There are 258 households and 1,180 residents in total. There are 42 children under the age of three, and 23 among those children have been left behind. We visited some children whose parents are migrant workers. There is a two-year-old girl and a five-year-old boy in the family. They are left behind children, living with their grandparents. The purpose to have home visit is to build connections with families and provide one-to-one services to the families who need special support. The ECD centre has not such big space, but it contains much love, care and effort.