ECD the foundation for each child s future learning, well being and prosperity Access to high-quality ECD is the right of the child ECD interventions

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2 ECD the foundation for each child s future learning, well being and prosperity Access to high-quality ECD is the right of the child ECD interventions necessary For every US$1 spent, the return could be as much as $7.

3 Young children below 9 years old = 16% percent of the population Love for children enshrined in our culture and our religion Equal access to: Free education Shelter Clean water Free health Sanitation Protection from abuse

4 Free health care MDG Goals 4, 5 and 6 achieved Comprehensive Health Care policies and strategies based on universal health coverage High quality antenatal and post-natal care Improving child survival Decreasing infant morbidity High levels of immunisation -consistently above 95.0 percent for all vaccinations. 3 maternal mortalities in 2012 Infant and child mortality rate of 8.3 per thousand live births Under-5 Mortality rate at 8.3 per thousand live births

5 Free Education Universal preschool education for five-year-olds started 1979 High quality Early Childhood Care and Education - national top agenda ECD incorporated in the Strategic Plan of the Ministry of Education and Compulsory Education 9 years National Education Policy at least 12 years of schooling Compulsory Religious Education for Muslims

6 Education Order 2003 regulates the registration, supervision and inspection of educational institutions for children 3 years and above Childcare Centers Order 2006 regulates the registration, supervision and inspection of childcare centers for children below 3 years old Feasibility Study on the Provision of High Quality Care and Education to Children Aged 3 and 4, currently being conducted with assistance from UNICEF. Inclusive Education Policy for Children with disabilities since 1994

7 Stable and loving family surroundings - the best environment to bring up children National policies accentuates on the strengthening of family institutions National Family Day every May

8 Programmes to strengthen families include:- pre-marital courses for young couples post-marital courses courses on parenting skills communication skills financial management Counseling awareness campaigns on family values reproductive health domestic violence promoting family friendly centers at the workplace work life balance.

9 Children and Young Persons Order Islamic Family Law - deals with Domestic Violence also Births and Deaths Registration Act Adoption of Children Order Guardianship of Infants Act Legitimacy Order Unlawful Carnal Knowledge Act Women and Girls Protection Act A 3-digit child helpline is operated 24 hours

10 As children issues cut across many sectors, the national mechanism for children is a multi-agency national committee which focuses on the Family Institution, and incorporates children issues. This committee includes government agencies and NGOs It reports to the ministerial level National Council on Social Issues.

11 More specially-trained teachers working in private preschools and government-funded preschools Well-designed training and education programme for caregivers of young children below 3 years old Enhance play-based curriculum for young children below 3 years old Strengthen mentoring system to monitor the quality of teaching and learning in child care centres and preschools Better preventive measures to address obesity among children.

12 Need to enhance our early childhood care and development programmes not just in the field of education but also in health and nutritional needs Need for better intervention to prevent violence against children Need for a holistic approach Need for better integrated multi-agency approach guided by the principles of the best interests of the child

13 In our South-South collaboration, there is a need for ECD indicators per se which will assist our governments to formulate policies and strategies towards the enhancement of early childhood development of all the children in our region.

14 Thank you

Appeal to the Member States of the United Nations Early Childhood Development: The Foundation of Sustainable Human Development for 2015 and Beyond

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