In Ghana, and in most parts of Africa, nannies are not normally well trained people to shape the behavioural life of a child and pose security dangers in the homes they live in and to the children they are hired to cater for.
In November 2014, Jolly Tumuhiirwe, a 22- year- old Ugandan Nanny was caught on a hidden camera kicking and stomping on Aneela Kamazi, an 18-month old girl she was hired to take care of.
Similarly, in April 2015 a nanny by name Funmilayo Adeyemi in Nigeria through the assistance of her family including her husband, Rasheed Kareem, brother-in-law-Hakeem Kareem and mother in-law kidnapped the three children of a Banker and her husband in their home in Lagos for a ransom of N15 million that was later negotiated to N13 million out of which N2 million was paid to a bank account of the suspects.
However with the assistance of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, Lagos Police Command, the kidnappers were caught and brought to book.
There have also been reports across Africa of the in-human behaviours of nannies maltreating children in the absence their parents.
Despite these reports which went viral, the increase demand in hiring nannies is still large because of the fact that most women are highly engaged in business and corporate activities in order to raise capital to support their spouse and build a financially stable home.
One may ask who qualifies to be a nanny. A woman who has given birth before or a woman with a good attitude may qualify to be a nanny?
In my quest to find out how these nannies are recruited, I interviewed the Chief Executive Officer of Sefy’s Choice Ghana Limited whose organisation refer nannies into homes to determine the criteria for commending a nanny for a particular home.
Miss Mercy Sefakor Tsar, CEO of Sefy’s Choice Ghana Limited, said the criteria her company uses for recruitment is to employ nannies with working experience, who are matured and are of sound mind from 25 to 40 years.
She said the organisation pays the nannies as their staff, catering for their Social Security and National Health Insurance to psyche their minds to work hard because their future have been taken care of.
She said the organisation does interview and background checks before recruitment and provides the liberty for their client to also interview the person before employment.
Miss Tsar explained that a nanny is put on a week trial to determine if she is fit for the job before six months probation.
She said it is important for a background check so that in case of any incident, one could refer to the person’s family members.
She noted that the organisation does supervision once in every month on weekends to give out a questionnaire to their client and Nanny.
Miss Tsar said this helps to determine what they need to change and for them to express their displeasure about what they feel unhappy about before the situation grows to become something critical or escalate.
Asked whether Ghana needs a professional nanny training school? She said it is something very important, which is even on the bucket list of her organisation to start such a school in the country.
She said it is not important to plot CCTV camera’s in homes because if nannies get to know, they would not portray their true self and would also hide under pretence.
Miss Tsar advised that families need to do a regular check up on children by building a strong relationship with nannies by satisfying at least most of her needs.
She said this may go a long way to help know if their children are in safe hands.
She added that a good baby sitter is worth their weight in gold.
By Kwamina Tandoh