Date: 04-09-2018

NEWS – INTESYS: How can we accomplish more together? - Part 6

Integrated systems is a complex term; don’t let the name put you off. Integrating early childhood systems helps reduce disparities in learning outcomes for vulnerable children and help professionals meet the diverse needs of children and families. They help practitioners, managers and policymakers accomplish more – together.

Though we know the benefits of integrating early childhood systems, it can be difficult to motivate systems to change. So, we asked the experts to explain the critical factors that motivate different early childhood organizations and services to work together. Mónica Mascarenhas of the Aga Khan Foundation in Portugal gives her take:

'I think one of the fundamental factors for the involvement of the different sectors in the INTESYS project is the way it triggers the interest of actors for deepening their work, but with an action perspective, therefore inspire participation. This is so important, as it will contribute to action policies for organizations and governments at national and European level.

It was very important the mobilization process we enacted: reaching out to organizations and the partners, meeting them, bringing them together. Our plan and implementation strategy led to high engagement from people, thus being able to follow a sustained journey of learning and deepen the work that we already do.

I believe that one of the factors that led to closer cooperation among various sectors in this project was its pertinence: it is a contemporary issue that challenges us all, as services are increasingly invited to cooperate with other services, and they feel the need to invest in their professionals. But this process requires reflection, training, and resources. Therefore, the pertinence and challenge of the journey of integration, together with the resources and the opportunity to carry on the process supported by training and the Local Partner Groups’ community of practice, were the key elements.' 

Still not sure what Integrated Systems for early childhood services are? Be sure to brush-up on what the term means through our series of INTESYS interviews.

 Download the INTESYS Toolkit here!