FORCES Network

The Forum for Crèche and Child Care Services came into being on 17 January 1989 following the recommendations of the Shram Shakti report brought out by the National Commission on Self Employed Women and Women in the Informal Sector. Though founded to act as a pressure group, the network is committed to the survival and development of the young child (0-6 years) and women working in the informal sector.

The core vision of FORCES is that every child has the right to early childhood care and development including crèches and childcare services. And also that it is the state’s responsibility to ensure such services for all children, especially those of women working in the unorganized and informal sector.

FORCES ’ Vision has translated into the following Goals :

  • To build a strong Network of organizations, comprising child care organizations, women’s groups, academic institutions, trade unions and NGOs.
  • To create awareness through a sustained campaign on the needs of children of the poor and under-privileged.
  • To focus on the right of every child to care and protection, a happy childhood and education.
  • To work towards the promotion of day-care services in India, not merely for providing custodial care to children but for all-round development – physical, psychological and social.
  • To work with the government of India for the inclusion of child care services in the Minimum Needs Programme and improved resource allocation, programmes and policies.
  • To carry out advocacy work on issues relating to children and work on legislation pertaining to children.
  • Work towards the setting up of Special Fund (a fixed share of the GNP) for creches and child care services.


FORCES is an informal network and not a registered body and therefore have no membership fee. The voluntary nature of the network gives no tangible benefits to members but a sense of belonging and working together on certain issues.

There are two main decision-making bodies - the Policy Committee and the National Steering Committee both of which provide direction to the National Secretariat. The Convenor organisation plays a supportive role by providing space for the Secretariat and routing the monies for it.

The National Secretariat rotates every three to five years among the headquarters-based member organizations to ensure ownership. Since April 2007 it is housed at CWDS, the present Convenor of FORCES. The Centre is also a founder member of FORCES. The earlier Convenors have been ICCW (Indian Council for Child Welfare), Mobile Creches and YWCA of India.

FORCES actively initiate and foster networks at State level. It has flexible, decentralized structure based on participatory processes, led by a Convenor organization on the principle of rotation.

Funding is received and managed by Convenor organization on behalf of the network. The policy stand, agenda and action plans are evolved through an interactive process by the policy – making groups.

Regional Networks :

The regional networks are engaged in advocating the rights of the young child through the convening organization and its members.

S. No. Regional Network Convenor organization
1. Delhi Mobile Crèches
2. Orissa Committee for Legal Aid to Poor (CLAP)
3. Gujarat Centre for  Health Education Training and Nutrition Awareness (CHETNA)
4. Tamil Nadu Foundation for Rights of Young Child
5. Rajasthan Seva Mandir
6. Bihar Nidan
7. Uttar Pradesh Vigyan Foundation
8. Jharkhand Chota Nagpur Sanskritik Sangh
9. Uttarakhand Himad

State partners (since 2008-09):

Sl. No. State Organisation
1. Haryana Adi Gram Samiti
2. Himachal Pradesh Jan Abhiyan Sanstha
3. Madhya Pradesh Mahila Chetna Manch
4. Forces North East( Assam & Manipur) United Forum for Justice, Assam/ New life Foundation, Manipur

Critical Issues Identified by FORCES

  • Commitment to address the four basic rights (survival, protection, development and participation) through ECCD services.
  • Declining sex ratio in the context of survival of the girl child, high infant mortality of the girl child and discrimination against her.
  • Provision of services like crèches and ICDS/day care centres, Maternity Benefits, etc.
  • Reach and accessibility of ECCD services by the ‘Last child’ (Children of unorganized labourers; of marginalized communities, in remote locations, of nomadic tribes and migratory populations etc).
  • Policies affecting nutritional status and leading to high infant/child mortality rates.
  • Universalisation of ICDS with quality.
  • Education for the under sixes.
  • Empowering PRIs to participate effectively in decision making processes.

Capacity building of regional networks for research and monitoring.