This study investigates the burnout and coping in the work experience of educators-caregivers (ECs) employed in early childhood day-care centers in Israel, given that the interaction between ECs and children is a decisive factor in the quality of care for children. The study included 40 participants and used qualitative-phenomenological and arts-based approaches in both individual and group interviews. Informed by the literature on burnout, feminist theory, and a coping model, we found that while the ECs’ strength lay in experiencing childcare as meaningful and rewarding, they lacked enabling working conditions. Specifically, the high number of children per EC, lack of institutional support, and parents’ negative attitudes added to their daily stress and eroded their sense of self. In giving voice to the ECs as experts navigating complex realities, this study contributes to the understanding of their burnout and coping from interpersonal and social perspectives.
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- educators-caregivers (ECs)