first_imgUnited Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) on January 10 launched #EarlyMomentsMatter, a new campaign supported by the LEGO Foundation to drive increased awareness about the importance of the first 1,000 days of a child’s life and the impact of early experiences on the developing brain. During this critical window of opportunity, brain cells can make up to 1,000 new connections every second –a once-in-a-lifetime speed. According UNICEF release, these connections contribute to children’s brain function and learning, and lay the foundation for their future health and happiness. A lack of nurturing care – which includes adequate nutrition, stimulation, love and protection from stress and violence – can impede the development of these critical connections. The campaign kicks off with #EatPlayLove – a digital and print initiative aimed at parents and caregivers that shares the neuroscience on how babies’ brains develop. #EatPlayLove assets explain the science in a straightforward, visually interesting way to encourage parents and caregivers to continue to make the most of this unrivaled opportunity to provide their children with the best possible start in life. By engaging with families, the initiative also aims to drive demand for quality, affordable early childhood development services and to urge governments to invest in programs targeting the most vulnerable children. According to a recent series in The Lancet nearly 250 million children in developing countries are at risk of poor development due to stunting and poverty. But the need for greater investment and action in early childhood development is not limited to low-income countries. Disadvantaged children living in middle- and high-income countries are also at risk. UNICEF estimates that millions more children are spending their formative years growing up in unstimulating and unsafe environments, putting their cognitive, social and emotional development at risk. Investment in early childhood is one of the most cost effective ways of increasing the ability of all children to reach their full potential – increasing their ability to learn in school and, later, their earning capacity as adults. This is especially significant for children growing up in poverty. One 20-year study showed that disadvantaged children who participated in quality early childhood development programs as toddlers went on to earn up to 25 percent more as adults than their peers who did not receive the same support.Early childhood development interventions, such as the Care for Child Development package that includes training community health workers to teach families about the importance of playing with their children in a way that stimulates healthy development can cost as little as 50 cents (USD) per capita per year, when combined with existing health services.UNICEF is therefore, calling for governments to increase investments in early childhood, expand health and social services offered to young children, and strengthen support services for parents and caregivers. This campaign is part of UNICEF’s broader program on early childhood development, supported by H&M Foundation, The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, ALEX AND ANI, and IKEA Foundation.About UNICEFUNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more


first_img0Shares0000AFC Leopards defender Robinson Kamura flies in on a tackle on Kariobangi Sharks striker Duke Abuya during their Kenyan Premier League match on April 24, 2019. PHOTO/Timothy OlobuluNAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 24 – George Abege headed home in added time as 10-man Kariobangi Sharks came from a goal down to hold AFC Leopards to a 1-1 draw in a Kenyan Premier League match at the Kasarani Stadium on Wednesday evening.Whyvonne Isuza had scored perhaps the quickest goal in Kenyan Premier League history, tapping home after just 20 seconds to give AFC Leopards the lead. However, Abege stepped off the bench to head home a freekick in the last minute of the match to see the sides share spoils.Sharks were reduced to 10 men in the 63rd minute after youthful defender Ian Taifa was sent off for a second yellow card. But, the never say die attitude of William Muluya’s men saw them go off with at least a point.Isuza broke the deadlock with the easiest of tasks guiding home the ball into a gaping goalmouth after being put through by the sensational Paul Were who was making his second appearance for Ingwe since returning to the den.Were did the donkey work on the left skipping past his markers before drawing keeper John Oyemba to his near post and cutting back for Isuza to tap home simply into an empty net.This was the second consecutive assist for Were in as many matches and this was a replica of the third goal they scored against Posta Rangers last week. From kick off, David Ochieng picked the ball in midfield, sprayed it to Were who did the rest.AFC were buoyed by the early goal and had another chance off a set piece in the eighth minute but skipper Robinson Kamura’s curling effort from 30 yards out flew straight into keeper Oyemba’s arms.AFC Leopards defender David ‘Cheche’ Ochieng rises to clear a cross from Kariobangi Sharks striker Sidney Lokale during their Kenyan Premier League tie on April 24, 2019 at the Kasarani Stadium. PHOTO/Timothy OlobuluAll this time, Sharks were yet to settle into the game but had momentum sway their way in the 25th minute when a move from the right saw Taifa break into the box but went down under a challenge from Isaac Kipyegon, but the shouts for a penalty were downed by the referee.Two minutes later, they were almost gifted a chance when Ochieng lost the ball in midfield and in an effort to recover floored Sidney Lokale at the edge of the box.However, Nixon Omondi lifted the ball over from the resultant set-piece which was placed in good scoring range.With Harambee Stars head coach Sebastien Migne and his assistant up in the stands scouting for a team for the African Cup of Nations in June, onus was on the players down on the pitch to put up a performance worth remembering.Pressure was on two; Ochieng and Were, who returned back home from stints in Europe with the sole purpose of earning valuable playing time to audition for a place in the AFCON team.And if there was a day to prove their worth, then on a smooth playing surface at the Kasarani Stadium was the right auditorium to play the orchestra. Ochieng put in a defensive midfield role put in a shift while Were was pulling the strings on the wing.But even as the contest on the ball grew, so did the emotions of the game. In more than one occasion the referee had to come in between flying fists and at one time Isuza and Sharks skipper Patillah Omotto almost came into blows after the former flew in poorly into a tackle on the latter.AFC Leopards defender Robinson Kamura tracks down Kariobangi Sharks striker Eric Kapaito during their Kenyan Premier League tie on April 24, 2019 at the Kasarani Stadium. PHOTO/Timothy OlobuluIn the second half, the tempo increased, AFC looking for a second goal to seal some comfort while Sharks who were chasing the game needed a catalyst for a comeback.Six minutes after the restart, AFC had a chance when right back Yusuf Mainge took a confident chance from the wing, cutting into a good shooting position but his grass cutter went inches off target.Sharks were reduced to 10 men in the 63rd minute when Taifa was sent off for a second bookable offense after a kung-fu like tackle on Kipyegon.But even with their numerical advantage, AFC still chased the game with Sharks doubling their effort. Ingwe however had a chance in the 70th minute when a well diced cross from Brian Marita found an onrushing Isuza, but this time keeper Oyemba raced off his line to make a superb block.AFC had another chance when some beautiful display from Paul Were on the left once again saw him skip over three markers before cutting back a cross but substitute Ivan Sekazza could not connect into an empty net.As the clock ticked, so did Sharks’ industry as they sought to get a goal back in the match. They came close when Abuya cut into some good shooting space from the left but his curling effort went inches wide.They got the reward they needed much at the stroke of full time when Abege towered above the defense to nod home a freekick from another substitute James Mazembe to break Ingwe hearts.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more