The Global Philanthropy Forum addresses child development issues

From right to left: Raj Panjabi, Joan Lombardi, Liana Ghent

ISSA’s Executive Director Liana Ghent spoke at the Global Philanthropy Forum Conference in Washington DC last week. For the first time, this yearly event featured a strand on the child. Ms. Ghent, spoke during the working group, A Healthy Start: The First Thousand Days, where she highlighted three main points:

  • The importance to link the health focus with a strong child development focus, making the shift from child survival to child development.
  • The importance of investing in those who work in early years services. Competent practitioners, supported by competent systems.
  • Ms. Ghent also shared insights on the ISSA and UNICEF resources on how to build capacity for home visiting services in the CEE/CIS region (here).

At the event, the President of the World Bank, Jim Yong Kim, stressed the importance of early childhood development. He drew attention to children’s stunting, which can be a result of any of these three factors: malnutrition, lack of stimulation or exposure to toxic stress. All these factors lead to fewer neuronal connections, “Human capital is literally the number of neuronal connections we have”, Mr. Kim said. Watch at about minute 40 in this keynote conversation here.

More about the Global Philanthropy Forum here.