Early childhood development (ECD) and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are highly interlinked. ECD has a strong multiplier effect which can transform individuals, communities and societies. It is reflected across the SDG framework and contributes to achieving all of the goals.
A focus on ECD will help countries achieve sustainable development outcomes, given that addressing inequities in ECD creates positive change in whole-of-society, particularly in reducing poverty, improving health and well-being, and raising learning outcomes. Developing effective multi-sectoral ECD programmes will help meet SDG targets.
The impact of COVID-19 on young children is significant in terms of child protection, exposure to domestic violence, challenges to health and nutrition, as well as access to early learning opportunities, all of which affect their social-emotional development. There is a need to address short- to long-term impacts on early childhood development.
The social impacts are not even-with pain points more pronounced among the most vulnerable young children and their families and communities. The pandemic has widened social divides and young children and their families have been worse off with job losses and economic contraction, which have exposed them to processes and conditions of human poverty, deprivation and exclusion.
ARNEC’s advocacy for recovery from the pandemic is in support of continuing holistic and inclusive ECD and protecting the gains of the SDGs, including reversing losses as a result of COVID 19.
The Asia-Pacific Regional Network for Early Childhood (ARNEC) expresses deep concern over the devastating impact of the flooding and unfolding humanitarian crisis in Pakistan, particularly on young children who are among the most adversely affected. We stand in solidarity with m