Early Childhood Development - Eurochild’s achievements in 2021
First Years, First Priority Campaign - A fair start for every child
Since the launch of the campaign in 2020, Eurochild and the International Step by Step Association, in partnership with the European Public Health Alliance and Roma Education Fund, have built a strong community of advocates for early childhood and the need for more public investment to support young children and their families.
Working with national partners in nine European countries, the campaign focuses on children who are most vulnerable, including children with disabilities, Roma and Traveller children, migrant and refugee children, children at risk of entering, or in, alternative care, and those in extreme poverty. It prioritises children from birth to 6 years, with a special attention to the first 1,000 days. Country partners have developed strong national coalitions, engaging policy-makers to address poverty, inequality and social exclusion in children’s earliest years.
To create lasting change, the campaign works at national and European levels to harness EU initiatives and create a virtuous circle between grassroots activism & NGO services with national policy, legislative & public spending reforms, so that all children can have the best start in life.
What we have achieved
- In 2021, the campaign engaged with the European Commission and Member States to increase awareness of the importance of a comprehensive and integrated approach to early childhood development policies and services. The campaign highlighted the need for the European Child Guarantee to ensure access to essential services for very young children and their families, especially those facing exclusion and discrimination.
- The French EU Presidency was an opportunity to catalyse further attention to early childhood development and engage the French government in the campaign.
- A framing document was published in April 2021, providing an overview of the policy context, the campaign objectives and the issues it addresses (child poverty, maternal & child health, early learning, etc.).
- Nine country profiles and a cross-country analysis were launched in July 2021.
- We collected and shared regular updates from the campaign National Coordinators.
Visit the First Years First Priority Campaign Website