Across Eastern and Southern Africa, efforts are underway to collect and use data that are relevant to ECD to inform decision-making at national and subnational levels. New measures have become available to strengthen this process. These include the UNICEF Early Childhood Development Index 2030, the WHO Global Scales for Early Development (GSED), and the World Bank Anchor Items for the Measurement of Early Childhood Development (AIM-ECD). These measures were developed to facilitate a better understanding of children’s development at the population level. The Countdown to 2030 – Country Profiles for Early Childhood Development are aligned with the Nurturing Care Framework and several countries have introduced country dashboards. Finally, work is underway to fill data gaps and develop new indicators, such as for assessing responsive caregiving.

Realizing the need to take stock of the available measurement tools and indicators that are important for ECD; to exchange experiences and streamline efforts; and to agree on how to ensure relevant data is captured and utilized to strengthen policies and services a Regional Meeting on Measurement of Early Childhood Development in Eastern and Southern Africa was organized in Kigali, Rwanda from October 24-27, 2023.

The meeting was co-organized by the United Nations Children’s Fund Eastern and Southern Africa Regional Office (UNICEF ESARO), the World Health Organization Regional Office for Africa (WHO AFRO), the World Bank, the Africa Early Childhood Network (AfECN), and the Early Childhood Development Action Network (ECDAN), in collaboration with the Government of Rwanda.

The meeting brought together over 140 participants from 18 Eastern and Southern Africa countries: Angola, Botswana, Burundi, Comoros, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, South Africa, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. Participants included government delegates from relevant ministries (health, nutrition, education, child protection, community development), national statistical offices, academia, WHO and UNICEF staff and partners.

The meeting concluded with the development of country-specific action plans to strengthen monitoring and evaluation of ECD policies and programmes in each of the participating countries.

Background materials
Concept note
List of participants (forthcoming)

Workshop proceedings
Day 1 recap
Day 2 recap
Day 3 recap
Meeting report (forthcoming)


Day 1

Day 2

Day 3
Using data to strengthen systems

Key considerations for routine information systems

Overview: Monitoring programme implementation

Overview: Monitoring children’s development

Additional reference materials