Jamaican Mommies by Shanoy Coombs: From Jamaica; for the world
For a long time, Jamaica’s outstanding feats have been linked to successes on the track and musical accomplishments. It is therefore super refreshing when my fellow country men and women excel at academics, politics, international competitions, fashionable showcases, culinary delights and more recently start up companies and ICT inventions. With the recent heart swelling Man Booker win by Jamaican Marlon James it prompted me to blog about yet another outstanding Jamaican based grouping that has been receiving international acclaim in the field of Early Childhood Parenting programmes.
On Tuesday, September 29, 2015, a University of the West Indies based group (Bonus points for my alumni) made their way to the Inter American Development Bank’s (IDB) offices in Washington, D.C to launch an established and highly successful parenting model, aptly called Reach Up: An early childhood parenting programme.
|Some members of the Reach Up Team: Joanne Smith, Kristy Fernandez, Amika Wright Christine Powell, Susan Chang and Susan Walker|
But what made this programme so different, so meaningful and successful was the fact that it did not begin today but has been steadily and sometimes even quietly reaping successes over the past 30 years. Beginning as the Jamaica Home Visit Programme of the 1980’s to where it stands today helping parents and their children to “Reach Up” and achieve their full potential.
To date, this programme #FromJamaicaToTheWorld has already been implemented in Jamaica, Bangladesh, India, Brazil, Madagascar and Peru and best of all provides a globally scalable, easy to replicate early childhood development solution.
What this means is that Reach Up has been designed in such a way that it can be implemented in varied countries and across several different cultural contexts.
So imagine the excitement as I watched the team from the University of the Mona based Topical Medicine Research Institute (TMRI) present its findings, the model on which this early childhood programme is based and how they had now decided to make this programme available in digital formats globally. The excitement was also shared others in attendance at the Washington, DC based launch with one standout comment being
“We are a bit less lost because of this Jamaican tool” Peter Singer, CEO @gchallenges #ReachUp LIVE fr Washntn D.C. http://t.co/MGIyc7zvH6
— Jamaican Mommies (@JamaicanMommies) September 29, 2015
Since the launch, Reach Up through its website allows prospective users of the early childhood parenting programme to submit their applications for review. Once approved, institutions, groups and other parenting/early childhood related organizations will be able to access a wealth of information and a ‘parenting kit’ to better assist children in their critical early childhood development years.
|A child participates in a Reach Up Home visit session in Kingston, Jamaica|
The materials include:
For more context on the Reach Up programme, check out the video below:
For more information on Reach Up: An Early Childhood Parenting Programme read on and be sure to connect with them via: