Early care and education (ECE) providers play a crucial role in increasing children’s well-being. By investing in our ECE providers, we can improve health now, as well as set children up for successful and healthy futures.
In 2012, Nemours Children’s Health partnered with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to form the National Early Child Care Collaboratives (NECCC). The NECCC includes groups of experts in ECE settings. The NECCC supports communities launching initiatives focused on child wellness and disease prevention.
To date, the NECCC has reached approximately 134,000 young children in 1,300 early care and education settings.
ECE leaders are in a unique position to prevent childhood obesity and promote healthy living. In its first year, the NECCC created a project to promote healthy eating and physical activity in early care and education settings.
Each collaborative held a series of five in-person workshops. These trainings helped ECE providers learn best practices to promote healthy eating and physical activity, as well as exchange ideas. This strategy brought ECE providers together to learn from each other and empowered them to make significant, sustainable change.
Proven results in decreasing childhood obesity
At year one, participating ECE programs saw a:
Research has shown that the foundation for literacy starts early. If children aren’t reading at grade level by the end of first grade, they only have about a 10% chance of catching up by fourth grade.
The Nemours Children’s BrightStart! (NBS!) program is an early literacy program that promotes foundational early literacy skills. The program includes:
Early literacy results
To-date, we have reached more than 175,000 children in 26 states. NBS! has proven results. Using the curriculum has led to:
We have also provided technical assistance to bring together Medicaid and ECE partners. Our initiatives have focused on sharing information and resources to support families served by both Medicaid and ECE agencies.
Strengthening this partnership leads to better use of resources, enhanced communication and better health outcomes for children. For example, we can improve early interventions for developmental delays or disabilities and address social determinants of health.
Some of our specific initiatives have included:
Early care educators are uniquely positioned to improve children’s health. When you help improve children’s health, you’re helping to create a better future. Find more tools for helping children have a healthy start.Learn More
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