It's a Baby House! Daycare centers now in local communities
"Baby House," a community-based daycare model, is being promoted in Shanghai to benefit families with children under 3 years old.
The trial program was first launched last year in Jiangning Road Subdistrict of downtown Jing'an District with a "Baby House" set up in an existing community building. It features clean rooms specially decorated for children, where they are accompanied with professional babysitters and can play with plenty of toys and other entertaining facilities.
Parents or grandparents can drop children there temporarily when they need to leave for some errands or work and pick them up on their way back. It can take care of 45 children at a time.
It also offers guidance on parenting skills for families via lectures and parent-child activities.
With the daycare center gaining popularity, the district has opened six more "Baby Houses."
According to Sun Hong, director of the Shanghai Education Commission's childcare division, the city will build more "Baby Houses" to host at least 15 percent of the total population aged 1-3 by 2025.
Shanghai is also increasing daycare services in kindergartens to ease the burden on parents and grandparents.
By the end of 2022, Shanghai had 1,708 kindergartens with 534,000 children, including 1,052 public ones that host 61.59 percent of the children. About 1,000 of the kindergartens also provide daycare services for children under 3 years old.
In total, the city now has 1,309 childcare facilities offering 58,000 seats.
This year, Shanghai plans to add at least 3,200 daycare spots in communities and 2,000 in kindergartens.
It aims to increase the supply of childcare spots from 2.12 per 1,000 residents to 4.5 per 1,000 by 2025.