Shortage of nannies from deluge of Dragon babies
The Year of the Dragon has inspired a parents all over to produce a deluge of newborns. This has resulted in confinement nannies becoming ‘precious commodities’. Read on to find out more.
A rise in demand
Aspiring parents in Malaysia have taken advantage of the auspicious Year of the Dragon to raise the annual birthrate by a significant amount. It is believed that babies born in 2012 would be driven, charismatic and have brave qualities that are could make them more successful in life.
However this boom has raised the demand for confinement nannies creating a shortage in the market. Especially in densely-populated cities like Kuala Lumpur and Johor Bahru are finding it tough to hire experienced confinement nannies even three to four months ahead of their delivery date. In fact, Alice Ong, who runs the SN Confinement Ladies Service, said that her centre had received bookings up to December this year. Confinement nanny Zen Ah Ching also confirmed that her schedule is fully booked for the whole of this year, since January.
Parents have expressed concern over the huge shortage of confinement nannies. Elaine, whose sister-in-law in Johor Bahru had been searching frantically for a nanny since March, said that she had so far only found one available in July. Meanwhile, the charges for confinement services had increased from about RM100 on average to RM3,800 and mothers may have to pay even more for nannies from other states, if they are unable to find local ones.
When there are no nannies
The situation in Johor Bahru is worse as many confinement nannies have chosen to work in Singapore. The pay across the causeway is believed to be more lucrative than that in Malaysia. Alice Ong also said that those who could not secure a nanny could hire domestic help or even ask their relatives for help in taking care of their babies. She added that some confinement centres had training classes for husbands and relatives to teach them how to take care of a newborn baby.