Early Childhood Development


Parenting support programmes, a proven intervention for building constructive parental-child relationships and effective parenting practices, are critical to support parents who are raising children in a context of high levels of poverty, chronic illness and disability, violence and other social risk factors. There is practically no support provided to parents and families to fulfil this role – support which is urgently needed in the South African context.  (National ECD Policy 2014, p. 30)

ECD National Policy Strategy is to create an essential package that is delivered through four types of ECD programme one of which is  ‘parenting support‘ which aims to strengthen parental knowledge and practice regarding children’s holistic development and strengthen social support and connections (ECD Policy,  p. 40)

Soul Action’s Response


Soul Action’s Parent and Toddler programme intends to address  the issue of  no support by  working directly with parents and caregivers. The vision and aim of this programmeto empower and enable parents to provide a safe, loving, nurturing and fruitful environment where their children can grow into their fullest potential holistically  Our aim is achieved by working with a partner organisation to offer a parent and toddler group in a community where at present there is  very little support for parents/caregivers at home with young children.T

Programme Design

The programme will support parents and caregivers by providing weekly sessions. which will provide a;

  • well-resourced play space for children and parents/caregivers to use together
  • an opportunity for parents/caregivers and children to connect socially with others in their community
  • an opportunity for parents/caregivers to develop a knowledge of the skills under 6s should acquire and activities to promote this holistic development.

Each session will focus on a different area, i.e.:

  • gross motor skills
  • emotional development
  • spiritual development
  • keeping Children Safe
  • fine motor skills
  • problem solving skills [colour, number and memory]
  • social skills
  • communication skills (story and rhyme)

During 2017 we aim to  pilot  this program  in partnership with a non profit organisation in 1 community

Reference:  Martin, P. Berry, L. Biersteker, L.. Desmond, C. Harrison, D. Naicker, S. Richter, L.. Salojee, H. and Slemming , W.  (2014) National ECD Policy Draft Copy, Human Sciences Research Council.