1884: First ever nursery opens in Prague

Illustrative photo: Czech Television

The very first Prague nursery was established in 1884 by the Czech philanthropist Marie Riegrová-Palacká, daughter of the famous historian František Palacký. A few years earlier, in 1869, she had established the first Czech kindergarten.

Riegrová herself visited poor families to select children who should be admitted to the nursery or kindergarten and decide whether they should be entitled to free meals. When the children arrived at the nursery, they were bathed, given clean clothes and food.

However, once they left the nursery and kindergarten, they often ended up on the streets or had to start working. Only a fraction of them started school.

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