Early-Childhood Brain Builders Initiative Receives US$70,000 Boost

Jamaica News: The Ministry of Education, Youth and Information’s (MOEYI) Brain Builders Centres (BBC) initiative has been bolstered with the acquisition of a US$70,000 Japan-funded Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) technical cooperation grant.

This was disclosed by Programmes Manager for the Education System Transformation Programme (ESTP). Daynea Facey, during a Jamaica Information Service (JIS) Think Tank at the agency’s head office in Kingston on Tuesday (October 29).

She said the grant is being used to provide stimulation resources for BBCs in a wide range of early-childhood institutions. These include infant and basic schools, day-care centres, and crèches.

Mrs. Facey indicated that 10 early-childhood institutions across the Ministry’s Regions are already benefiting to this end, adding that caregivers are being trained in, among other things, how best to utilise the resources.

These institutions are Small Fry Nursery and Learning Centre, and Vouch Nursery and Pre-School (Region 1); Tranquility Primary and Infant School (Region 2); Chester Infant School (Region 3); Bright Minds Nursery (Region 4); Mandeville Infant School (Region 5); and Elim Early Childhood Development Centre, Genesis Daycare Centre, Bournes Little Angel Nursery and Pre-school, and Prime Time Early Childhood Institution (Region 6).

In May, the Early Childhood Commission (ECC), which collaborates with the Ministry in the BBCs’ implementation, hosted a professional development programme, which targeted 1,000 caregivers working in centres, and those who work generally in early-childhood institutions (ECIs).

According to Mrs. Facey, the participants got the opportunity to engage in sessions exploring ways in which children can be stimulated and appropriate activities that can be incorporated.

“Research has shown that [for the first 1,000 days of a child’s life] from conception to age two, there are specific interventions that children need to have the best start in life,” she pointed out.

Meanwhile, Sector Planner at the ECC, Paula Shaw, who also addressed the Think Tank, said the BBCs concept is a pivotal component of the Early Stimulation Strategy.

The strategy aims to increase the quality of the early-stimulation educational experiences in ECI-based programmes serving children up to age three; implement a standardised parenting programme model for families accessing primary healthcare and early-childhood development services; and establish opportunities for educational stimulation and parenting experiences.


Source: JIS News

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