Financial Inclusion Challenge
By digitizing and monetizing transactions in the informal childcare economy, Tiny Totos has built a robust credit worthiness tool for unbanked women to borrow against.
Tiny Totos is addressing women's lack of financial inclusion, which affects women worldwide. The gender earning gap also directly impacts the child care penalty. For women in Africa, becoming a mother disrupts their ability to work, save, build credit history, and take risks. Poor child care prevents women from enjoying economic empowerment or financial inclusion.
Tiny Totos is a Kenyan social enterprise working to transform the informal child care market, and turn the child care crisis into opportunity. Our incubation model helps ad hoc babysitters become profitable child care entrepreneurs with coaching, network, technology and capital. Each daycare Tiny Totos works with unlocks 50 other women’s ability to work, creating a community of economic opportunity for marginalized women. Most of its partners need capital to improve their rudimentary care spaces. However, with community babysitters lacking conventional assets like property, fixed jobs or savings, Tiny Totos could not find any banks or MFIs willing to take a risk on them. It therefore set up a loan facility of its own using earnings from child care (owners) or payments for child care (parents) as alternative ways to define credit for our members, drawing from digitized records of payments.
- 500 loans issued through Tiny Totos loan facility
- Almost 5,000 parents and managers in Tiny Toto’s network are eligible for loans
Tiny Totos works with informal carers filling the vacuum of care in Africa's low income communities. With low care standards, children below age five fail to meet their developmental milestones. Daycare owners earn little and service can be poor, mothers' work is constantly disrupted. The market size is over $1 billion.
- Tiny Totos works with local government authorities and health workers in Nairobi to refer children needing their care and support. It has referred 512 children as of September 2023; 942 in the whole of 2022.
- Tint Totos runs periodic joint booster and vaccine drives with the local health authorities, so children can receive Vitamin A/deworming and discrete boosters directly in the daycare.
- Soy Afric: The corn soya blend–a nutritious porridge for young children– is unavailable on the local market (mostly sold in bulk to aid agencies), so Tiny Totos buys it directly from the factory and sells it through the daycares so the children can enjoy low cost nutritious meals. Tiny Totos has sold 13,498kg of corn soya blend translating to almost 500,000 bowls of porridge. It has also partnered with Naturelock to sell dried lentils (13,000 meals so far), and Beansy to sell a dried beans product (just launched in June 2023).
- Tiny Totos’ toolkit to guide companies in adopting best child care practices has been endorsed by NCDA
Tiny Totos partners with the following organizations as it relates to research and/or deployment of its solution:
- AfCEN the African
- Early Childhood Networt
- Mercy Corps
- ESRI (Ethiopian School Readiness Institute)
- EFOY (Nanny Training Center)
- National Child Development Agency (NCDA)
Tiny Totos seeks:
Expertise in developing a range of strategies for engaging users.