Early childhood: Promoting the family as a lever for development

A day of reflection was organized this Wednesday, May 25, around the theme “Early childhood: what reception methods in family policies? at the initiative of the Ministry of Solidarity, Social Integration and Family and in partnership with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

Held on the occasion of National Children’s Day, the meeting aimed to examine the state of play of structures and childcare services and identify gaps with a view to strengthening the offer and adapt to the specific needs of children (0 to 4 years old) and families, in accordance with international standards and the new ministry strategy in this area.

In this sense, the ministry, led by Aawatif Hayar, is committed to working, in close collaboration with the actors concerned, for the establishment of free or low-cost social crèches for the benefit of low-income families, and the development of childminder professions (legal framework, training and recognition of acquired knowledge).

The objective, said the Minister, is to put in place a global vision for the promotion of the family as a lever for social, inclusive and sustainable development.

This vision is a contribution to strengthen convergence with all social programs and plans and improve targeting according to social protection mechanisms, in particular the Unified Social Registry (RSU) program, she argued, noting that “the development of the offer of services in terms of childcare is one of the main pillars for coping with the evolution of Moroccan society, ensuring the care of children, contributing to the economic empowerment of women and their integration into the job market and reconciling parents’ professional and private lives”.

Aawatif Hayar, in this regard, highlighted the multiple strategies and actions implemented by his department for the promotion of early childhood, in particular the 2021-2026 strategy of the social pole and the GISR (Green innovative social regeneration) concept living to harmonize the action of the Social Development Agency, National Mutual Aid and the National Institute for Social Action with civil society and the various players concerned.

The UNICEF representative in Rabat, Speciose Hakizimana, for her part, insisted on the need to promote early childhood in order to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The UN official, who praised Morocco for recently extending the period of paternity leave to 15 days, reviewed the problems faced by small children, including malnutrition, violence and different forms of abuse .

In this regard, she pleaded for the development of an integrated and intersectoral policy for the promotion of early childhood, the establishment of an effective coordination and monitoring mechanism, the development of an information system offering data on the main early childhood monitoring indicators, and the establishment of a joint support program for parents to assist them in the care of the child.

Representatives of the ministerial departments and national institutions concerned, associations, the private sector, universities, research centers and international partners, as well as researchers and experts, took part in this study day.

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