On June 28th, 2021, a coalition of partners launched a Call to Action urging for increased investment and scale-up of evidence-based initiatives to support caregivers. These partners, which include UNICEF, the World Health Organization (WHO), Partnership for Lifelong Health (PLH), the Early Childhood Development Action Network (ECDAN), and the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children, are urging organizations of all types to take part in this call, including governments, global partnerships, multi- and bi-lateral agencies, political bodies, funders, international non-governmental organizations, faith-based organizations, the business sector, academia, civil society organizations, networks, and advocates.
With the spread of COVID-19, parents and caregivers are experiencing unprecedented challenges, with children at great risk of not reaching their full potential. Now, more than ever, parents and caregivers have a pivotal role to play at the front lines of protecting their children from stress and promoting their development, health, and well-being. The pandemic has brought to the forefront the critical role of parenting, as well as the tremendous influence the home environment has on children’s lives.
The evidence is clear: parents and the environment at home are central pillars in supporting children’s health and development. The quality of parenting practices is a key determinant of every child’s ability to develop their cognitive, emotional, and social potential and resilience against adversity.
What can we do?
Before COVID-19, at least 250 million young children were already at risk of not reaching their full potential. Now, UNICEF estimates that more than one billion children are facing that risk due to the increased isolation from school closures, the financial hardship of families, and the disruption of child protection, health, education, and other services because of the pandemic. The cost of inaction in support of parents will have long-term impacts on future human capital – and because of that, we must act now.
This unprecedented global crisis calls for an agile, coordinated, and unified global effort on behalf of ALL parents and caregivers, especially the most vulnerable. We must work collectively to innovate, scale-up, generate evidence, and advocate for initiatives that support parents and caregivers. Join us and grow the global movement in support of parents to secure a more resilient and promising future.
Collective Action Goals:
- Protect children and adolescents, and support families to cope with the multiple stressors, including those resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Enable parents to nurture their children’s development across the life course, in the context of reduced child-related services and increased parental responsibilities.
- Build the foundation for mainstreaming the uptake and implementation of evidence-based parent and caregiver support initiatives in all countries.
Senior Research Officer
Department of Global Health and Population
University of Oxford
The University of Tokyo
Yin Minn Latt
Terre des hommes Italia
Research and Technical Advisor
Impact and Innovations Development Centre
Angel Belle Dy
The Growing Brain PH
The University of the Witwatersrand
Country Engagement Officer
Nobody’s Perfect Manitoba- Youville Centre
Hong Huay Lim
Senior Technical Advisor
Vytautas Magnus University
Tom Ah Egch
Mirza Adil Beig
District Project Assistant Capacity Building
Aga Khan Foundation
Senior Program Manager, ECD
BRAC Enterprises Tanzania Limited
Early Childhood Program Coordinator
United Way Brasil
Early Years Specialist
Do More Foundation
Society for Women and AIDS in Africa, Lesotho
Senior Programme Manager
Antonio Felix Jeronimo
Regional Psychosocial Support Initiative- Angola
Psychologist, Research Associate
Kelvin Lubeya Ngoma
Acting Country Director
REPSSI South Africa
Byamukama Michael Ntanda
PhD Candidate & Researcher
Queens University Belfast
University of Cape Town, Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital
Early Start, University of Wollongong
PhD Student, Researcher
INSP & DERSP/FMOS
Veda Corriette George
Early Childhood Coordinator
Ministry of Education, Human Resource Planning, Vocational Training and National Excellence
Pediatrician in charge of ECD and ECE
Saran Ashram Hospital Dayalbagh Agra India
National Programme Development Director
SOS Children’s Villages Bosnia and Herzegovina
Child Development & Child Protection Expert
Founder & Director
OTR/L, PGDip, EI/SI, NBCT, SMS, Prof. Doc.
LifePrint- Terapia Ocupacional Pediatrica Especializada
BRIDGE Innovation in Learning
Community Development and Social Justice Secretary
The United Church of Zambia
Sabilah Eboo Alwani
University of Cambridge
Ministry of Childhood
University of Cardiff
Senior Academic Coordinator
Vikramshila Education Resource Society
Business Development Specialist
Associate Professor of Global Health
Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
Mohammad Shariful Alam
Professor & Head (Community Medicine)
Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences
University of Belgrade, Department of Philosophy
Cayetano Heredia University
Education University of Hong Kong
ECED Expert, Researcher, and SDGs Strategist
Arab Resource Collective