Focus on early childhood awards

WHILE a powerful nation-building partnership is winding up the provincial award ceremonies of the yearly Sowetan and Absa Early Childhood Development Awards, we need to reflect on the importance of this crucial programme.

WHILE a powerful nation-building partnership is winding up the provincial award ceremonies of the yearly Sowetan and Absa Early Childhood Development Awards, we need to reflect on the importance of this crucial programme.

Driving the partnership are SABC Education, the Department of the Education, South African Congress for Early Childhood Development, Unicef, Sowetan, Aggrey Klaaste Nation Building Foundation and the Absa Foundation.

Researchers assert that appropriate nurturing of children psychologically, emotionally, spiritually and socially are the crucial child-raising elements that ensure that children survive, grow and withstand disease and develop their full-thinking, language and emotional skills. The partnership ensures that the programme becomes:

l An important strategy in achieving the Millennium Development Goals;

l A foundational strategy in achieving the Education for All goals, and the ideals of the Second Decade of Education for Africa Goals in the African Union;

l A viable tool to address and combat the HIV-Aids pandemic;

Absa staff in the company's corporate social investment and responsibility department are hosting the provincial award ceremonies that have been held in Mpumalanga, Limpopo, North West and Free State.

The last five provincial awards will be held in Northern Cape today, Western Cape on November 16, Eastern Cape on November 18, KwaZulu-Natal on November 20 and in Gauteng on November 25.

lScientific information sourced from scientists Heckman and Masterov's research writings, the Lancet Medical Journal and State of the World's Children Survey.

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