This paper explores the experiences of neonatal health care providers caring for small and sick newborns during the COVID-19 pandemic. An online survey in three languages was used to collect data on COVID-19 preparedness, effects on health personnel and on newborn care services, including kangaroo mother care, as well as disruptors and solutions. There were 1120 responses from 62 countries, mainly low and middle-income countries.Read More →

This paper finds considerable inconsistency in guidance documents from 33 countries regarding breastfeeding and newborn care. None of the guidance documents reviewed recommended all aspects of WHO guidance. In this paper, health care providers from 62 countries share their experiences of caring for small and sick newborns during the COVID.-19 pandemic.Read More →

This document, along with a 9-page brief, describes the implementation experiences and emerging lessons of COVID-19 response strategies of seven programmes that prioritize nurturing care and early childhood development. The case studies include a wide range of geographic contexts and the programmes address at least one of three components of nurturing care: responsive caregiving, opportunities for early learning, and safety and security. The seven programmes are: Associazione 21 Luglio (Italy); Ummeed Child Development Center (India); Nobody’s Perfect Parenting Programme (Canada); Kangaroo Foundation (Colombia); International Rescue Committee & Sesame Workshop [Ahlan Simsim programme] (Jordan); Parenting for Lifelong Health [MaPa programme] (Philippines); and PATH Mozambique.Read More →

In an article published in 2016 by the World Economic Form, Linda M. Richter, Director of the DST-NRF Centre of Excellence in Human Development at the University of the Witwaterstrand, argues that low-cost interventions which facilitate and support nurturing care for infants in their first years of life contribute to lifelong health, wellbeing and productivity. The economic benefits of these interventions far outweigh the investment costs. “Simply put, we need to intervene earlier than we currently do.”Read More →

This interactive country profile, developed by the Early Childhood Development team, uses secondary sources to compile national data alongside information on national policies and programs to highlight both the needs and opportunities for promoting optimal child development in Kenya. This profile complements the Countdown to 2030 Country profiles for early childhood development. Read More →

This interactive country profile, developed by the Early Childhood Development team, uses secondary sources to compile national data alongside information on national policies and programs to highlight both the needs and opportunities for promoting optimal child development in Rwanda. This profile complements the Countdown to 2030 Country profiles for early childhood development. Read More →

This interactive country profile, developed by the Early Childhood Development team, uses secondary sources to compile national data alongside information on national policies and programs to highlight both the needs and opportunities for promoting optimal child development in Uganda. This profile complements the Countdown to 2030 Country profiles for early childhood development. Read More →

Within three years, Ethiopia’s Ministry of Health, alongside other sectors, developed a multisectoral approach to contextualize and operationalize the nurturing care agenda. This case study underscores the importance of consistent leadership and a harmonized vision to seed nurturing care at all levels and across sectors. The case study sets out the process followed in developing a vision shared by different sectors and stakeholders, assigning roles and responsibilities, developing strategic and operational plans, and building capacity to implement effective interventions at national and regional (i.e. subnational) levels. Read More →

This 2020 collection of “Country Profiles for Early Childhood Development” has been developed by UNICEF in collaboration with Countdown to 2030 Women’s, Children’s and Adolescent’s Health. The profiles are an attempt to compile, in one place, the available data for country and cross-country monitoring and to provide a baseline against which progress can be monitored.Read More →

As custodian agency of SDG indicator 4.2.1 on ECD, UNICEF was tasked to lead the development of a new measure to track progress against the related target. In response, in 2015 UNICEF initiated a process of methodological development that involved extensive consultations with experts, partner agencies and national statistical authorities. This led to the development of the ECDI2030. This captures the achievement of key developmental milestones by children between the ages of 24 and 59 months. Mothers or primary caregivers are asked 20 questions about the way their children behave in certain everyday situations, and the skills and knowledge they have acquired.Read More →

The 2020 Country Profiles for Early Childhood Development were launched on 23 November 2020. In this commentary in The Lancet, the authors share what can be found in the 2020 profiles. They also reflect on the progress and challenges with respect to understanding how children are faring worldwide.Read More →

This collection of country profiles has been developed by UNICEF in collaboration with Countdown to 2030 Women’s, Children’s and Adolescent’s Health. The profiles are an attempt to compile, in one place, the available data for country and cross-country monitoring and to provide a baseline against which progress can be monitored. The 2020 country profiles cover 42 ECD indicators and 197 countries, including 60 high-income countries (HICs), that encompass 99·8% of the world’s children younger than 5 years.Read More →

This 2020 collection of “Country Profiles for Early Childhood Development” has been developed by UNICEF in collaboration with Countdown to 2030 Women’s, Children’s and Adolescent’s Health. The profiles are an attempt to compile, in one place, the available data for country and cross-country monitoring and to provide a baseline against which progress can be monitored.Read More →

Note: You can access the most recent set of Early Childhood Development Country Profiles here. The “Country Profiles for Early Childhood Development” are developed by UNICEF in collaboration with Countdown to 2030 Women’s, Children’s and Adolescent’s Health. The profiles are an attempt to compile, in one place, the available data for countryRead More →

This series considers new scientific evidence for interventions, building on the findings and recommendations of two previous Lancet series on child development (2007, 2011), and proposes pathways for implementation of early childhood development at scale. The series emphasises ‘nurturing care’, especially for children below three years of age, and multi-sectoral interventions starting with health, which can have wide reach to families and young children through health and nutrition.Read More →

This review aimed to deepen understanding of the effects of COVID-19 on nurturing care on young children in the Kenyan context. The review draws on empirical evidence from previous pandemics and epidemics, and anecdotal and emerging evidence from the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. The review proposes program and policy strategies to guide the re-orientation of nurturing care, prevent the detrimental effects associated with deteriorating nurturing care environments, and support the optimal development of the youngest and most vulnerable children. Read More →

Dietary guidelines provide advice on what to eat but often do not take into account “how” to eat. Responsive feeding is a key dimension of responsive parenting, involving reciprocity between the child and caregiver during the feeding process and is characterized by caregiver guidance and recognition of the child’s cues of hunger and satiety. Evidence indicates that providing responsive feeding guidance to mothers on how to recognize and respond appropriately to children’s hunger and satiety cues can lead to improved feeding practices and weight status and developmental outcomes among infants and young children. Providing nurturing care to children has indeed been identified as a global priority but the feeding dimension remains untapped, in part, as a result of a lack of clear responsive feeding guidelines during the first 1,000 days of life.Read More →

Published in the Journal of Public Health (February 2019), “The effect of a community-based, integrated and nurturing care intervention on early childhood development in rural China” explores whether attention to nurturing care can promote developmental health and reduce developmental delays. The community-based program was implemented in four counties of China, serving parents and their children aged 3 and under. The intervention included attention to all five components of nurturing care. Findings suggest that attention to nurturing care can lead to a reduction in the prevalence of suspected neurodevelopmental delay in children.Read More →