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Childcare Practices among Construction Workers in Chira Chas, Jharkhand

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This study aims at examining the childcare practices and issues experienced by the low-income construction workers in India. It is concerned with understanding varied aspects relating to problems that construction workers, as parents, face while bringing up their children in one of the small construction companies of eastern India, in the state of Jharkhand. Qualitative methods have been used in order to collect the data based upon phenomenological principles. Ethnography and photo-elicitation were used as a primary method of data collection. Apart from this, in-depth interviews were also conducted with the workers of the construction company. Discussion with the participants led to the emergence of four themes: children left alone; playing at risky site areas; poor health of children; and children working along with parents. The research findings indicate that infants are taken by their parents to their place of work whereas children between five and 10 years had to be left alone at home. It was also found that acute poverty was a major cause leading to the consumption of inadequate and low nutritional food, leading to poor health of the children. Based on the study findings, there is an imperative that societal forerunners and philanthropists continue to use research findings to understand the childcare practices amongst the low-income workers and draft strategies accordingly, to improve the situation.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2012

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