Our Evidence

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The Alliance members are motivated by the growing scientific evidence and research showing a clear relationship between early childhood development, appropriate family care, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation and abuse–and the development and well-being of nations. These areas complement our current major investments in child survival, health and basic education. We converge on the importance of establishing outcome-oriented and evidence based approaches that recognize the significance of early interventions in the life-cycle. These approaches view a child’s development as holistic and affected, inter alia, by a range of inter-related variables including nutrition, early stimulation, the duration and severity of exposure to one or more protective risks, access to and quality of social services including health and education, and the nature of the child’s family environment (or lack thereof). For example, providing a child with access to quality education will provide limited returns if that child’s cognitive and neural development has already been severely compromised by poor caregiving, extended exposure to violence and abuse, and severe malnutrition.

Why It Matters

Science tells us that our outcome areas (strong beginnings, family care and protection) are key investments or pathways out of adversity for children growing up in conditions of severe deprivation or danger. When linked to core health and education programs, this new approach will lead to significant long term benefits for millions of children and participating nations.

The results of investment in early childhood and preschools over a period of 40 years: individuals and societies reap the benefits
Findings Programs vs No Programs Percentage of sample group
Arrested 5+ Times by 40 Program Group
36%  
No-Program Group
55%  
Earned $20k+ at 40 Program Group
60%  
No-Program Group
40%  
Graduated High School Program Group
77%  
No-Program Group
60%  
Basic Achievement at 14 Program Group
49%  
No-Program Group
15%  
Homework at 15 Program Group
61%  
No-Program Group
38%  
IQ 90+ at 5 Program Group
67%  
No-Program Group
28%  
  • Program Group
  • No Program Group
Return on investment in early childhood
Savings
Cost
  • Education Savings ($7,303)
  • Taxes Earnings ($14,078)
  • Welfare Savings ($2,768)
  • Crime Savings ($195,621)
  • Cost ($15,116)

Nutritional Poverty in early childhood and its impact on a child's development (1000 days - Brain scans of two 3-year-old children)

Normal Brain

Normal

Malnourished Brain

Malnourished

© 2007 Dr. Fernando Monckeberg Barros, Universitade Diego Portales
This (malnourished) child is reported to have suffered from extreme neglect (abandono cronico) and the degree to which other factors such as social stimulation may have impacted this child are unknown.

Relational Poverty in early childhood and its impact on a child's development (EEG Activity at baseline )

Normal Brain

Never Institutionalized Children

Malnourished Brain

Institutionalized Children

Marshall, Fox, et al (2004) Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience

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