Building the capacity for early childhood parenting programmes
We developed the Reach Up Early Childhood Parenting Programme and accompanying training package to provide an effective, adaptable programme, feasible for low resource settings. Our aim is to facilitate building the capacity needed to implement these programmes. The Reach Up Early Childhood Parenting Programme is based on the Jamaica Home Visit (JHV) intervention designed by Sally Grantham-McGregor. The intervention has been successfully adapted and evaluated in Bangladesh and Colombia with benefits to children’s development, and was adapted and implemented at a large scale by the Peruvian government.
Evidence to impact over 30 years - our journey!
**Developmental Quotient. For further details on the intervention studies see paper by Smith et al. 2016.
The intervention is guided by core principles and was developed so that it could be delivered by para-professionals with a minimum of completed primary education. These principles include:
Works through caregivers by building a positive relationship to support them in strengthening skills to promote child development.
Uses a structured curriculum of developmentally appropriate activities.
Aims to build caregivers’ skills, self-esteem and enjoyment in helping her child play and learn.
Uses an interactive approach of demonstration and modelling and practice of activities to build skills.
Home visitors are trained to listen to the caregivers, seek their opinions and ask about things they already do with their child and to acknowledge these and give encouragement and praise.
Emphasises praise for caregiver and child.
The Reach Up Early Childhood Parenting Programme has been designed to provide the materials and training needed to implement effective parenting interventions. It is based on the proven Jamaica Home Visit Programme and was designed by a team that has successfully implemented the approach in several countries. This programme is unique due to its extensive evidence base. Reach Up has been formulated with the benefit of over 30 years’ worth of research on effective early childhood intervention programmes. It provides agencies with a comprehensive set of materials to support parents in providing a more stimulating environment for their children, improving quality interaction and facilitating learning.
There was an increasing desire internationally, to scale up programmes to reach the many families in need. We recognised the need for a more comprehensive training package that would make it easier to train trainers, and for these trainers to be able to train home visitors.
PROF. SUSAN WALKER