A programme on parental awareness of investing in early childhood development and its influence in childhood and grown-up years was conducted online on 16 December 2022.
SARVAM, in association with Shanthi Ashram, conducted an awareness session for 25 mothers from the various project villages on investing in early childhood development and its influence in childhood and adult years.
In the brain-building process, neural connections are shaped by genes and life experiences – namely good nutrition, protection and stimulation from the talk, play and responsive attention from caregivers. This combination of nature and nurture establishes the foundation of a child’s future. However, too many children are still missing out on the ‘eat, play, and love’ factors.
A mix of factors determines why some children receive the nutrition, protection and stimulation they need while others are left behind. The process of health and human capital accumulation throughout childhood is complex. It is a combination of the capabilities that children are born with (so-called “endowments”); investments in children made by parents, caregivers, local communities, and government; and adverse and positive experiences that affect child development. Understanding how these elements interact throughout childhood to determine adult health and skill capabilities (and, in turn, economic outcome) is crucial to development.
As we phase beyond the COVID-19 pandemic, we immediately need to designate child protection services as ‘essential’. Communicating with and engaging parents, caregivers and children with evidence-based information and advice is essential. The study recommends building skills for frontline workers to engage better with caregivers.
To address these issues, SARVAM motivated our village mothers to participate in an awareness programme with Shanthi Ashram. Twenty-five young mothers from various villages participated in the program.
The programme focused on presenting in a community setting the importance of ‘early child development and practices that ensure good. It emphasised that by introducing good care practices for children within the family and community cantering around health & nutrition.
Dr Lakshmi, a Senior Paediatrician and an active member of the Indian Academy of Paediatrics (IAP), Coimbatore chapter, headed the session. She currently serves as a Medical Officer in the Coimbatore Municipal Corporation. She has been the President and Secretary of the Adolescent Health Academy also.
- The trainer focused on the following points:
- An insight into the early child development
- School Environment – the Mesosystem
- Community – Are our children Healthy?
- What do our children need in the challenge periods?
- Let us make the world a better place for children
- Positive and effective parenting
As a result of her easy way of conducting the session, all participants were greatly touched as they learned about the new points discussed. The women thanked the trainer, stating that even though they come from remote villages, SARVAM and Shanthi Ashram made these training easier for them to access. The participants assured that they would follow all the points and motivate others.