New York — UNITED States-based Zambian Mbumwae Suba-Smith has earned recognition from the renowned Columbia University of New York City for providing quality day care services through her Columbia Group Family Daycare.
Mbumwae, who is based in New York City, has been running Columbia Group Family Daycare since 1987 and also owns Subayo Foundation, an advocate for women and children that help underprivileged communities in Zambia and other parts of Africa.
As part of the recognition, 59-year-old Mbumwae was recently invited by Columbia University to participate in the Columbia University Daycare Fair which included only the best day care centres that operate in New York City.
According to parents whose children are at Columbia Family Group Day care, the centre provides warm, loving care to infants and toddlers in a comfortable home setting convenient for Columbia's beautiful Morningside Heights Campus.
Mbumwae has thanked Columbia University, an American private Ivy League research university, for the recognition saying it is an honour to be rated among the top 100 day care centres in a city that has more than a million day care centres.
"Since 1987 I have owned my day care here in greater New York and I have worked with more than 200 families and 900 children.
"Not even one of them has been in the emergencey room and I have never had problems with the parents.
"In this city it is common for most children to end up in the emergency room for treatment from injuries in day care centres. It is almost unheard of to learn of a situation where not even once in a year or two but I have done it for over 25 years," she says.
"I have a lot of recommendation letters. I always have a waiting list because my day care is so popular. Right now I have children from Israel, France, Germany, South America and Japan under my care," she adds.
Mbumwae, who is the younger sister of Permanent Secretary for Special Duties at Cabinet Office In'utu Suba, states that: "I am also the first Zambian and African to buy property in this neighbourhood of Columbia University and a first female African to own property in this same neighbourhood."
Sheelagh McNeill, an Irish Canadian working for New York Times and her husband David Vassar, who is a senior librarian at Fordam University in New York City, say they are thankful to Ms Suba-Smith's day care for nurturing their son Benjamin.
"Ms Suba has the warmth, patience and sheer energy required in a top-notch day care provider. We have never regretted placing Benjamin in her very competent care, and he received an ample measure of both nurturing and early education during his two years at the centre," says Sheelagh and David.