Jite Titiloye and Tokunbo Dosunmu
Jite Titiloye and Tokunbo Dosunmu were advancing very well in their respective careers of interior decoration and marketing until the fire of a new dream consumed them. Dosunmu was indeed, a top marketing executive in the Dangote Group. But for two women who have from close quarters seen how women have been distracted in their career goals by their motherly devotions, the idea of providing a solution to the daily challenges that such women face was an inspiration.
A major challenge for women has been how to provide care for their new born babies while at the same time continuing with their careers. The immediate response for some women has been to either get out of school children from their villages or from somewhere else to look after their children.
Some of these women living in urban areas have also recruited house helps from within the cities. However, with more news of such strange house-helps being used to kidnap the babies they are supposed to look after, the difficulties for career women become more apparent.
It was in that light that Mrs. Titiloye and Ms. Dosunmu in an interview said that they conceived the idea of a training institute for care givers. Their aim according to Mrs. Titiloye â€œis to train early years teachers, child carers, parents and anyone who will work unsupervised with children.â€
Their vehicle is Certa Support Training Institute, an offshoot of Certa Support Nigeria Limited; a company focused on people development, empowerment, and social change.
The training institute is registered by the National Business and Technical Education Board (NBTE) and Lagos State Ministry of Education for the purpose of training child care givers.
Miss Dosunmu said that â€œCerta Support Training Institute is focused on developing and implementing vocational training courses on roles currently filled by untrained/unskilled workers in Nigeria.â€
The advantage they claim to be bringing to the yet undeveloped sector is the expertise of graduates of the training institute who would be compared to their contemporaries in Europe.
Asked on what kind of training is offered to students of the institute, Titiloye said:
â€œour students are well equipped on safeguarding children and to identify any form of abuse and what to do when they suspect any such incident of child abuse.â€
They are also trained in first aid, behaviour management and special needs awareness, a development that prepares graduates from the school to progress on to further careers in such field as caring for children with special needs such as autism. Students also have the option of picking up electives such as cooking, driving, swimming and girls hair-grooming.
â€œThe implication is that one graduate can offer herself as a driver to take the children to school, accompany them to swimming lessons and even help out as a cook or groom the hair of the female children under their care,â€ Ms. Dosunmu said.
Graduates of the school Mrs. Titiloye said would also benefit from the Placement Agency that is a spin-off of the main company, Certa Nigeria Limited. The graduates from the training institute she assures could be assured of salaries of N85,000 and above depending on the scope of services they offer when they are placed in private homes, hospitals or schools. They can even take the bull by the horn and start their own in-home child care centres.
The two women have in the course of their preparations for the takeoff of the institute had to themselves undertake trainings locally and abroad on child care.
â€œYou know you cannot give what you donâ€™t have, so we have also had to make sure that as the motivating persons behind this project that we are well trained,â€ Mrs. Titiloye said.
On how Certa Support would be different from other child care trainers, Dosunmu said:
â€œOur courses are developed by experts and the Childcare Professional 1 course is based on Early Childcare Education (ECCE) and UK best standards and practices in the industry.
â€œThe school is fully equipped with up-to-date facilities and resources ensuring a functional and conducive learning environment.â€