A new year brings predictions. Here is mine: in 2018 the momentum around early childhood development will continue to build. No surprise, given the growing evidence about the importance of the early years to long-term health, behaviour and learning.
The concept of ‘nurturing care’ will be central to every aspect of early childhood in the upcoming year. Defined in the landmark Lancet Series on Early Childhood Development (Black et al., 2017), nurturing care includes five integrated components: health, nutrition, safety and security, responsive parenting and early learning. The concepts behind nurturing care reinforce the fact that the domains of development are interrelated and interact with each other and can be mutually reinforcing.
In May 2018, a framework for nurturing care will be launched at the World Health Assembly highlighting the importance of multisector coordination. This is a major step forward for young children to survive and thrive.