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Securing healthy day care services in southern suburbs

10-9-2018

The Islamic Health Society (Al Hay’aa al Sihiya al Islamiya) announced the results of ‘Identifying the needs of daycares’ project based on classification of a number of kindergartens located within the area of its work in the Southern Suburbs in order to secure a healthy child-friendly environment. The results were issued one day after the health ministry decided to shut down four nurseries in several Lebanese regions due to their ill-treatment of children. (c.f:https://bit.ly/2wTjKN9). The classification, to note, covered 33 licensed daycares within the geographic area of Beirut’s Southern Suburbs. The results came as follows: 9 daycares were rated ‘Excellent’, 7 rated as ‘Advanced’, 9 as ‘Very Good’, and 5 as ‘Good’ and 1 as ‘Poor’, noting that the standards and specifications on which Al Hay’aa based its results are the same as those adopted by the health ministry. According to Al Hay’aa’s program director Alya Siblani, obtaining a license from the ministry should be the first condition to be taken into consideration by the child’s parents. The conditions to acquire a license, Siblani explained, are not difficult to get, like the nature of the building or construction, the necessary equipment and installations, like beds, etc, and provision of emergency measures for the prevention from dangers and accidents. Siblani pointed out that the permits are issued only once, and can be modified if the license owner wanted to add annexes, sections or other items that require adaptation, noting that the ministry has introduced a decree to renew licenses every two years. Similarly, the head of the Mother and Child Health Department at the ministry, Pamela Mansour, disclosed that currently there are 470 licensed nurseries in Lebanon, pointing to the lack of statistics on the number of unlicensed daycares which flourished over the past few years making it difficult to give a clear estimate on them. (Al Akhbar, September 8, 2018)

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