Restavèk means “to stay with” in Creole

A restavek child working in Haiti


The term restavèk comes from the French and Creole meaning “to stay with.” Restavèks are generally children of poor rural families who are sent to stay with and work as unpaid domestic servants for less poor, urban families. Parents send a child away with the hope that in return for the child’s labor, the host family will provide the child with food and shelter and send the child to school.