Church of Uganda, UNICEF partner to increase integrated Early Childhood Development in Uganda

The Church of Uganda and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) have partnered to increase access to quality integrated Early Childhood Development (ECD) services by boys and girls through community based early childhood education (ECE) centers in 12 districts.

The 12 districts include; Koboko, Lamwo, Madi-Okollo, Terego, Isingiro, Kamwenge, Kasese, Mubende, Abim, Kaabong, Karenga and Wakiso District.

This partnership will also help to increase knowledge, skills and practices in caring, raising and stimulating children by targeted adolescents, caregivers and leaders at targeted ECD centers, communities and households.

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Speaking at the implementation entry meeting today at the Provincial Secretariat of Church of Uganda in Namirembe, Peter Ssenkumba the National Program Coordinator for this Partnership noted that 121 ECD centres will be established and 363 caregivers will undergo thorough training to deliver excellent results.

“We will establish 121 community based ECD centres targeting 9,075 children aged 3 – 5 years (50% girls), 2%(182) children with disabilities and 10% (907) refugee children. Noting that ECD centres remain closed as a countrywide strategy to combat the spread of Covid-19, beneficiary children will be sought from homes and villages based on the mapped 121 ECD centres.” Ssenkumba said.

He added, “Church of Uganda community-based groups will include two parents’ groups and youths at each of the 121 ECD centers. Each group will reach a minimum of 9,075 adolescents and 9,075 parents a year.”

Rev Canon William Ongeng, the Provincial Secretary of the Church of Uganda applauded UNICEF for the longtime partnership which has helped to transform communities.
“We have a historic partnership with UNICEF which we are very proud of. We may seem to be targeting children but in actual sense, we are building a strong foundation for the future. The way we look after the children and equip them today will determine the future parents and leaders we have.” Canon William.