Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu called for collective action with an excellent strategy to ensure children’s well-being so that India can take full advantage of the demographic dividend. Naidu released ‘The State of Young Child in India’ report at the event, a comprehensive account of the challenges of early child development in India. “Child development should be the foundation of our development architecture,” he stated.
Mobile Creches has prepared the report, a policy advocacy organization that works with the underprivileged children across India. Naidu appreciated the report, saying that such documents help in policy formulation by developing a greater understanding of the children’s shortcomings and urgent needs. He also praised the publisher Taylor & Francis Group for making the digital copy of the report freely available for everyone.
He underlined the importance of ensuring healthy, happy, caring, and playful early childhood years for their holistic development. He acknowledged that adequate nutrition and a positive, caring environment at home play an essential part in a child’s development. The years from birth till age of five were critical; he pointed out. “We need to understand the cruciality of this aspect of national development and take effective steps to ensure all children have a healthy start to their lives,” he added.
Naidu said that it was important for all stakeholders, including the government and policymakers, to intensify their efforts in ensuring children’s well-being through better policies and effective programs. He emphasized the need for the uplift of the last man in the true spirit of Antyodaya, as espoused by Mahatma Gandhi and Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay.
Chairperson of Mobile Creches Amrita Jain, Co-founder of Mobile Creches Devika Singh, Publishing Director of Taylor and Francis Group Dr. Shashank Sinha, were among the dignitaries who participated in the virtual release of the report.