Working Paper 20. Child Labour, Gender Inequality and Rural/Urban Disparities: how can Ethiopia's national development strategies be revised to address negative spill-over impacts on child education and well-being?

Abstract

Drawing on a sample of 1999 households with at least one child aged 6 to 17 months in 2002, and from additional household data collected from 3115 children aged 7 to 17 years from twenty sentinel sites, the Young Lives Project sought to understand the impact on child labour and child schooling of public policy interventions formulated within the PRSP, and how changes are mediated through gender and rural‑urban differences.

These were the key findings: children were commonly involved in fetching water, firewood and dung both for household use and sale, although they were more likely to attend school when there was adequate household labour. School attendance was significantly lower in rural than in urban sites, while dropout rates were dramatically higher in rural areas. Maternal education levels significantly decreased the likelihood of children combining work and school. Increased land and livestock ownership led to a greater demand for child labour and reduced school enrolment. The involvement of households in more diversified activities increased the demand for labour which is frequently met by children, particularly boys, with girls commonly substituting for their mothers.

A number of measrures to help reduce child labour and increase schooling are recommended. A separate 8-page Executive Summary is attached.

Citation

Tassew Woldehanna, Bekele Tefera, Jones, N., Alebel Bayrau, Working Paper 20. Child Labour, Gender Inequality and Rural/Urban Disparities: how can Ethiopia’s national development strategies be revised to address negative spill-over impacts on child education and well-being? 2005, London, UK; Save the Children UK, 70 pp.

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