We have been part of the PAR Project since 2018, an initiative that is part of the National Plan to Prevent and Eradicate Child Labor 2018-2022, which confirms the commitment of different stakeholders to act proactively and prevent this problem by strengthening economic growth through sustainable production projects.
The final product of the Project is our exclusive Social Compliance System for the blueberry sector, designed by producers themselves which has already been in force for two years in the three production areas, including evaluations and pilot tests.
One of our major achievements is the Child Care Centers for children ages 1 to 4 years, who attend during harvest season, in the towns of Sargento Moya and Santa Lucía, province of Tucumán. Currently, more than 40 children, whose families work in the blueberry sector, attend these centers. The project was possible thanks to the joint work with the Secretary of State of MIPyME (micro, small and medium sized- enterprises) and Employment in the province of Tucumán and RENATRE (National Registry of Rural Workers and Employers).
We are working to replicate this service and assistance model to rural workers in different towns and provinces and extend it to other crops so that it can operate all year round.
In 2021, despite the pandemic, we also launched the first Punto Joven (Youth Spot) in Tucumán: a space for educational assistance and internet connection for young people ages 12 to 17 years who need support in their educational journey. There, they have school tutors and computers with internet connection.
Together with the National Ministry of Production and Labor, CONAETI, the Network of Enterprises against Child Labor, and Dya Foundation, we have implemented a communication and awareness campaign made up of different media pieces in order to strengthen the prevention of child labor, the protection of adolescent workers, and contribute to the promotion of education for children and adolescents.
Communication pieces included: signs on farm gates, posters in rural schools, care centers and common areas within the farms (packing houses, cold storage rooms, canteens, etc.), multipurpose stickers and training brochures. In 2020, we also added communication plotting on buses that transport personnel and clothing such as work clothes (caps, aprons, masks, etc.).
Finally, the Series of Training Events, implemented together with RENATRE, has had a successful participation for two years. In 2021, there were 17 free virtual meetings. They were oriented to blueberry field and packinghouse managers countrywide. The aim of the trainings is to provide workers and employers with technical tools and rights.