Nonadult Supervision of Children in Low-and Middle-Income Countries: Results from 61 National Population-Based Surveys

Ruiz-Casares, M.; Nazif-Muñoz, J.; Iwo, R.; Oulhote, Y. (2018)

International journal of environmental research and public health

15(8) | 1564

Despite scarce empirical research in most countries, evidence has shown that young children are unsupervised or under the supervision of another young child while their adult caregivers attend work or engage in other activities outside the home. Lack of quality supervision has been linked to unintentional childhood injuries and other negative outcomes. Nationally representative, population-based data from rounds four and five of the Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys (MICS) and four to eight of the Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS) from 61 low- and middle-income countries were used to estimate prevalence and socio-economic factors associated with leaving children under five years old home alone or under the care of another child younger than 10 years of age. Socio-economic factors included age and sex of the child, rurality, wealth, maternal education, and household composition. Large variations in the prevalence rates (0.1–35.3% for children home alone and 0.2–50.6% for children supervised by another child) and associated factors have been recorded within and across regions and countries. Understanding why and under what conditions children are home alone or under the supervision of another child is crucial to the development of suitable policies and interventions to protect young children, promote healthy growth, and support caregivers. View Full-Text