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Partnering with a vast network of local daycares that care for preschool children in slums to identify and fill vaccination delivery gaps

To leverage partnerships with local daycares using our tailor-made phone reporting app to identify and fill vaccine delivery gaps in slums

Photo of Emma Caddy
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Describe what you intend to do and how you'll do it in one to two sentences (required 350 Characters)

Through a growing network of informal daycare partners whose child attendance, payment, health and development data are all recorded on a custom-made phone based app, Tiny Totos can identify children vaccine gaps and health problems before they become critical, advise working mothers of the need to act, and organise vaccination drives at daycares.

Explain the innovation (2,500 characters)

The paradox of slums is that though mothers and children live closer to quality health services than in rural areas, their health indicators tend to be far worse. Proximity does not necessarily mean convenience. Most health centres open when mothers are out at work, forcing them to skip 'non-essential' vaccine and routine check ups, only taking time off when absolute health emergency arise – at which point children are usually too ill to be vaccinated. While the health booklets mothers are given at birth outline schedules of visits and vaccines, and child growth and development milestones, new mothers in fragmented urban slums, overwhelmed by daily survival challenges, often fail to internalise these messages or keep up with health centre guidelines. What Tiny Totos does is empower mothers through the slum daycares they attend every day or week to bridge these understanding and access gaps. Our daycare partners typically serve mothers in low skilled jobs, earning an average salary of $100-250 USD a month, who visit daycares 1-5 times a week. Unlike health centres, mothers build up a trusted rapport with daycares and managers, and listen to their childcare tips. Case in point – 66% of our upgraded daycares have kitchens, having persuaded parents to eschew low quality home food to spend money on nutritious meals in daycares instead, generating 25% of average income. Case in point, 100% of our daycares conduct regular health and development screening of children, with no objections from parents. They care to know; they just don’t have time to go. Case in point, 100% of our daycares hold parent meetings on weekends to discuss health needs of children, with 85% typical turnouts. Our innovation is to optimize and align fragmented but already present local businesses with the collective potential to identify health gaps and deliver knowledge and services to fill them. We already do this with ECD services; we now intend to expand our remit to vaccines. Our reporting app which captures baseline and ongoing health data of children in daycares can be expanded to capture baseline data on existing vaccine coverage and gaps, to support improved immunization efficiencies. With gaps defined, we will educate parents through managers, meetings, text tips and a parent portal on the app, to encourage buy-in of need to address gaps. We can then organise vaccinations in daycares during working hours so clusters of children can be conveniently inoculated.

Which part(s) of the world does this innovation target?

  • Eastern Africa

Geographic Focus

Our intervention is focused on Nairobi, Kenya, a typical exploding, congested East African metropolis where dense, fragmented urban settlements create - somewhat paradoxically - huge access challenges for delivery of health information and services. Once proven here, our work can readily replicate.

Who will work alongside your organization in the project idea? (1,000 characters)

We engage several tiers of local partners in our work: -Informal daycare managers. In Nairobi alone, there are at least 3,500 informal daycare providers, mostly women, representing 83% of all child facing institutions in this slums. Yet despite their huge social networking and influencing potential, and though they effectively look after a vast swathe of the next generation of Nairobi's adult population, and unlock lower income mothers' ability to go to work they lack any technical or investment or even moral support to do the work they do - parents of children in our daycares. without their buy-in to the philosophy, practice and potential of upgraded ECD services including vaccination, and without making these services affordable and convenient to them, they will not prove sustainable - community health volunteers who support outreach, engagement and education of our parent community - the Nairobi City County Government whose support is essential - Skyline Design in app design

How is your idea unique? (750 characters)

Our non-traditional approach in the field of child health and vaccine delivery is to truly build solutions from the bottom up. We accept and empower rather than ignore overlooked local market-based players and institutions already delivering childcare support services to hardworking, lower income mothers, recognising the value of trust they have built as primary caregivers for primary givers makes them social influencers with far greater sway over communities than imposed people or institutions could ever have. We give business and technology tools to earn them more money and become easier, so they have personal motivation and means to commit to improving and expanding services provided. We align we don't distort local markets and actors

What is the name of your organization

Tiny Totos Kenya

Explain your organization (250 characters)

We are a Kenyan company who believes no mother or child should suffer social or economic disadvantage due to lack of access to affordable, early childcare, and who sees informal daycares owners as critical local actors in solving this delivery gap.

Type of Submitter

  • We are a For-Profit Startup or Startup Social Enterprise

Organizational Characteristics

  • Female-led organization
  • Women’s health/rights focused organization

Gender and Diversity (500 characters)

With our work in the community largely interfacing with women, we have found our team most effective when it is similarly staffed by women able to best empathize with and communicate to both the daycare managers and parents we work with. Our full-time staff team is 75% female; our part-time are 95% female. Our board is 60% female; our CEO and founder is also a woman. Our gender policy is informed by SDG5 - women's rights to equality and entrepreneurship are all enhanced by decent childcare.

Organization Location (less than 250 Characters)

We are company limited by guarantee registered in Kenya. We are consolidating our model in Nairobi, with a view to replicating in 2019 and beyond elsewhere in the country and region.

Size of organization (number of employees):

  • 21-100 people

Website URL

Scale of organizational work

  • National (expansive reach within one country)

Tell us more about you

Emma Caddy, CEO and Founder. 20 years global experience in social enterprise creation and investment. MBA with Distinction from Said Business School Oxford where she was a Skoll Scholar. Focuses on business strategy, fundraising, management. Joseph Walumbe, CFO. Background in banking, Standard Chartered Bank and K-Rep Development Agency. MBA. Manages the business team, oversees business training and financial products. John Makau, Knowledge & Systems. 10 years’ experience in Consulting, Banking, Management, Technology, Telecommunications, e.g. in EY Australia. BA in Business Information Systems, MA Business Analytics. Moleen Ute, COO. 7 years' experience in Operations and Marketing for Bridges International; led Ugandan rollout.

Applying to Gavi INFUSE

  • Received an Email

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Join the conversation:

Photo of Ashley Tillman

Hi Emma Caddy seems like you have some great traction in the early childhood space, can you share a little more about how you are/or are thinking about integration with immunisation and health space? Who would you need to partner with in Kenya? How would you need to change your service model, etc? Looking forward to learning more!