© UNICEF UN038316 / McConnico

The WHO South-East Asia Regional Office in collaboration with UNICEF organized a 3-day virtual meeting from 27 to 29 April, 2021. The meeting brought together over 100 participants from WHO-SEAR countries (Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Indonesia, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka , Thailand and Timor-Leste) and two countries from UNICEF-ROSA (Afghanistan, Pakistan). Participants included government delegates from relevant ministries (health, nutrition, education, child protection, women and child affairs), WHO and UNICEF staff and partners. 

On Day 1, participants reflected on progress to date with promoting nurturing care for ECD in the region. They were oriented to Strategic action 1 of the Nurturing Care Framework, Lead and invest, specifically actions, challenges and opportunities with respect to undertaking this strategic action. 

On Day 2, participants explored Strategic actions 2 and 3 of the Nurturing Care Framework, Focus on families and communities and Strengthen services. Global and country presentations provided a framework to explore these areas for further action across the region. Spotlight was on perinatal mental health and wellbeing as an important determinant for child development and on scalability pathway for service delivery for nurturing care. 

On Day 3, participants were taken through the Country profiles for ECD, the Early Childhood Development Index (ECDI) 2030 and the forthcoming Global Scale for Early Childhood Development (GSED) to illustrate mechanisms for monitoring provision of nurturing care. Representatives of Partner organisations shared their ideas for collaboration and contribution to promoting nurturing care in the region. Finally, country teams prepared action plans to strengthen programmes for nurturing care and identified priority actions for the next 12 to 18 months at national levels. 

For more information contact: Dr. Rajesh Mehta mehtara@who.int

Background materials
Concept note
List of participants
Resource list

Workshop proceedings
Day 1 recap
Day 2 recap
Meeting report

Country presentations:

• Lead and invest

Nepal: National multisectoral policy for ECD
Bangladesh: National multisectoral nutrition plan
Bhutan: Learning from evaluation of ECCE
ARNEC: Experiences in the Asia-Pacific region (examples from Philippines, Cambodia and Indonesia)

• Strengthen services & focus on families and communities
Indonesia: Integrating health, nutrition and responsive care at Posyandu
Pakistan: Updated IMCI – including responsive care
India: Integrating health, nutrition, early learning and responsive care in home visiting
Sri Lanka: Early detection of development delays and early intervention
India: Adaptation of services during the pandemic (UMMEED)
India: Integration and delivery of interventions at community level: From pilot to scale

Other presentations
Rapid assessment of implementation preparedness for nurturing care in South-East Asia region: Key findings (WHO-SEARO)
Maternal mental health (Jane Fisher)
Monitor progress: Country profiles for ECD (University of Wittwatersrand), ECDI2030 (UNICEF) and the GSED (WHO)

Pre-recorded video presentations
Nurturing care for early childhood development: an overview (WHO and UNICEF) slides, video
Strategic action 1. Lead and invest (WHO and UNICEF) slides, video
Strategic actions 2 and 3. Focus on families and communities & Strengthen services (WHO and UNICEF) slides, video
Caring for the caregiver (UNICEF) slides, video
Using mass media and community engagement to support provision of nurturing care at home (UNICEF) slides, video
A case for male engagement in nurturing care: Learnings from SHOW Bangladesh project (Plan International) video