When community works: Early learning playgroups in the North West

Svetlana DonevaBlog, Blogs, ECD News, Lessons from the Field0 Comments

#Camu

The  Early Learning Playgroup Programme is an innovative public-private partnership, which trains government-contracted community workers in rural areas to run early stimulation playgroups for children aged 3 -5.  The benefits for the children are access to a quality learning programme, where before there was none. For the community workers, the programme presents an opportunity to work with children and take … Read More

Bringing the Story Home: Early Literacy in the Free State

Svetlana DonevaBlog, Blogs, ECD News, Lessons from the Field0 Comments

During October 2016, we visited the Community Work Programme participants who are implementing the Nal’ibali Early Literacy programme in ECD centres around the Free State.  For the children enrolled in these centres, the programme means access to an early literacy programme for the first time. Nal’ibali is part of an innovative partnership, which trains Community Workers to fill gaps in … Read More

Philani Mentor Mothers: Screening for fetal alcohol spectrum disorders by non-medical community workers

Svetlana DonevaResearch and Policy Briefs0 Comments

South Africa has the highest prevalence of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) in the world yet many women have no access to clinic care or to physicians in their communities. The shortage of physicians trained in the diagnosis of FASD is even more severe. Thus there is a need to train community workers to assist in the delivery of health … Read More

Predictors of alcohol use prior to pregnancy recognition among township women in Cape Town, South Africa

Svetlana DonevaResearch and Policy Briefs0 Comments

South Africa has the highest prevalence of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASDs) in the world. The purpose of this study was to identify high risk factors associated with drinking alcohol prior to pregnancy recognition in 24 neighborhoods in the Cape Flats outside Cape Town, South Africa. An interviewer assessed risk among 619 pregnant Black/African women between the ages of 18 and 41 years. … Read More

Philani Mentor Mothers: outcomes of home visits for pregnant mothers and their infants

Svetlana DonevaResearch and Policy Briefs0 Comments

The Philani Mentor Mothers Project aims to improve the health and well-being of vulnerable pregnant mothers and infants from low-income households, through a strategy of home visits by specially trained para-professional community health workers or “mentor mothers”.  The objective of this research is to evaluate the effect of home visits by community health workers (CHWs) on maternal and infant well being from … Read More

Multiple Risk Factors During Pregnancy in South Africa: The Need for a Horizontal Approach to Perinatal Care

Svetlana DonevaResearch and Policy Briefs0 Comments

South African children’s long-term health and well-being is jeopardized during their mothers’ pregnancies by the intersecting epidemics of HIV, alcohol use, low birth weight (LBW; <2,500 g) related to poor nutrition, and depressed mood. This research examines these overlapping risk factors among 1,145 pregnant Xhosa women living in 24 township neighborhoods in Cape Town, South Africa. Results revealed that 66 % of pregnant women experienced at least … Read More

Intimate Partner Violence and Depression Symptom Severity among South African Women during Pregnancy and Postpartum

Svetlana DonevaResearch and Policy Briefs0 Comments

Violence against women by intimate partners remains unacceptably common worldwide. The evidence base for the assumed psychological impacts of intimate partner violence (IPV) is derived primarily from studies conducted in high-income countries. A recently published systematic review identified 13 studies linking IPV to incident depression, none of which were conducted in sub-Saharan Africa. To address this gap in the literature, we analysed longitudinal data collected … Read More

Food insufficiency, depression, and the modifying role of social support

Svetlana DonevaResearch and Policy Briefs0 Comments

Food insecurity has emerged as an important, and potentially modifiable, risk factor for depression. Few studies have brought longitudinal data to bear on investigating this association in sub-Saharan Africa. The objective of this research was to estimate the association between food insufficiency and depression symptom severity, and to determine the extent to which any observed associations were modified by social support. The research … Read More

Cluster Randomised Controlled Effectiveness Trial Evaluating Perinatal Home Visiting among South African Mothers/Infants

Svetlana DonevaResearch and Policy Briefs0 Comments

Interventions are needed to reduce poor perinatal health. We trained community health workers as home visitors to address maternal/infant risks. In a cluster randomised controlled trial in Cape Town townships, neighbourhoods were randomised within matched pairs to 1) the control, healthcare at clinics , or 2) a home visiting intervention by CBW trained in cognitive-behavioural strategies to address health risks (by the … Read More

Philani Mentor Mothers: Depressed mood in pregnancy: Prevalence and correlates in two Cape Town peri-urban settlements

Svetlana DonevaResearch and Policy Briefs0 Comments

The disability associated with depression and its impact on maternal and child health has important implications for public health policy. While the prevalence of postnatal depression is high, there are no prevalence data on antenatal depression in South Africa. The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence and correlates of depressed mood in pregnancy in Cape Town peri-urban settlements. This study … Read More

Community health workers can improve child growth of antenatally-depressed SA mothers

Svetlana DonevaResearch and Policy Briefs0 Comments

The Philani Mentor Mothers Project aims to improve the health and well-being of vulnerable pregnant mothers and infants from low-income households, through a strategy of home visits by specially trained para-professional “mentor mothers”. Maternal antenatal depression has long-term consequences for children’s health. This research assesses whether home visits by community health workers can improve growth outcomes for children of mothers who … Read More

Philani Mentor Mothers: Alcohol Use, Partner Violence, and Depression

Svetlana DonevaResearch and Policy Briefs0 Comments

The Philani Mentor Mothers Project aims to improve the health and well-being of vulnerable pregnant mothers and infants from low-income households, through a strategy of home visits by specially trained para-professional “mentor mothers”. Pregnant South African women with histories of drinking alcohol, abuse by violent partners, depression, and living with HIV are likely to have their post-birth trajectories over 36 months significantly … Read More

South African Early Childhood Review 2016

Svetlana DonevaFlagship Products, Publications3 Comments

The South African Early Childhood Review 2016 presents information on essential components of the comprehensive package of Early Childhood Development (ECD) services. The review includes data and commentary on over 40 carefully selected indicators on the status of children under six, and service delivery progress across 5 domains: maternal and child health, nutritional support, support for primary caregivers, social services and … Read More

An evaluation of the Sobambisana Initiative

Svetlana DonevaPublications, Research and Policy Briefs0 Comments

Sobambisana, initiated in 2008, is the first attempt in South Africa to develop a local evidence base for interventions aimed at improving ECD, particularly those relevant to rollouts under the National Integrated Plan. Five non-profit resource and training organisations (RTOs) active in Early Childhood Development (ECD) were contracted to implement high quality models of ECD provision that would improve the access of children younger than six to … Read More

Ilifa Labantwana Annual Report July 2014 – June 2015

Svetlana DonevaFlagship Products0 Comments

Ilifa Labantwana’s Annual Report for the period 1 July 2014 to 30 June 2015 outlines the work done by the programme during this period. Areas of focus which are discussed include: Information access and use Early childhood care and education delivery models Early childhood development regulatory, funding and human resource systems Engagement with government Engaging the public The Innovation Edge … Read More

Funding of learnerships for ECD practitioners

Svetlana DonevaPublications, Research and Policy Briefs11 Comments

Data from the General Household Survey (2014) shows an increase in access to ECCE (early childhood care and education) services since 2012. However, it also points to increasing inequality in access between children occupying different income quintiles, with children in quintile 5 being 2.5 times more likely to have access to early learning opportunities than children in quintile 1. Key … Read More

Lessons from the Field: TVET Colleges: Contributions towards HR Development in the Early Childhood Development Sector

Svetlana DonevaLessons from the Field, Publications

Lessons-from-the-field

This brief provides an overview of the key findings and recommendations of a national survey of ECD training provided by selected public Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) colleges conducted by Ilifa in 2013. It makes recommendations for developing and improving training opportunities through TVET colleges for a scaled up ECD sector. [ For the full article, click HERE … Read More

Lessons from the Field: Private Funding of ECD in SA: A Snapshot!

Svetlana DonevaLessons from the Field, Publications

Lessons-from-the-field

A review of private funding of early childhood development (ECD) was conducted in 2013 to better understand current funding sources, drivers and areas of focus. The survey targeted the largest corporates listed on the JSE, local and international foundations and non-profit organisations (NPOs) operating in the ECD sector. [ Download the full document HERE ]

Lessons from the Field: The Sinovuyo Caring Families Project

Svetlana DonevaLessons from the Field, Publications

Lessons-from-the-field

This Lessons from the Field brief provides an overview of the Sinovuyo Caring Families Project which is being tested by Ilifa’s partners. The programme aims to contribute to the reduction of abuse and child maltreatment in South Africa through a mixed-methods approach that combines questionnaires, observational assessments, qualitative interviews and focus groups. [ To download the full report, click HERE … Read More

Developing appropriate financing models to enable the scale-up of ECD services

Svetlana DonevaECD News, Technical Reports

This report looks at how national and provincial budget processes impact on the funding of ECD services, and at the mechanics of preparing credible plans and budgets that will enable government to effectively finance and deliver them. What financing models would be appropriate to enable the scaling up of early childhood development (ECD) services to achieve population coverage on a … Read More

Key Findings from a Review of ECD Centre Registration and Funding Systems in KZN

Svetlana DonevaECD News, Lessons from the Field

This report provides an overview of the key findings of a 2013 systems and scoping exercise conducted by Ilifa in the Ugu district of KwaZulu-Natal. On the basis of this exercise, Ilifa puts forward a set of recommendations which will lead to the improvement of centre and programme registration and funding processes. Summary of Challenges/Key Findings: There is little evidence … Read More

Biological risks and toxic stress in the first 1000 days

Svetlana DonevaECD News, Publications, Research and Policy Briefs

Adverse experiences during the first 1000 days of a child’s life can have enormous and long-lasting effects which impair the child’s adult potential and ultimately contribute to ongoing inequality in South Africa, according to neurobiological research into the impact of socio-emotional experiences on the developing brain. This important area of research is introduced in two new Ilifa Research Briefs. Biological … Read More

A Quantum Leap – Ilifa Labantwana Phase I 2009–2013

Svetlana DonevaFlagship Products

From the inception of the Sobambisana Initiative, a
project of the DG Murray Trust, in 2007, to the end of Phase I of its programme in 2013, the Ilifa Labantwana story is one of rapid growth, testament to the urgency with which all stakeholders view the development of effective ECD services in South Africa.  The Sobambisana Initiative was a necessary intervention … Read More

Philani: Paraprofessional Home Visiting to improve Pregnant Mother and Infant Outcomes in South Africa

Svetlana DonevaResearch and Policy Briefs

The Philani Project aims to improve the health and wellbeing of vulnerable pregnant mothers and infants from low-income households, through a strategy of home visits by specially trained paraprofessional “mentor mothers”. Collaborators: Professor Mark Tomlinson (Stellenbosch University, South Africa); Dr Ingrid le Roux (Philani, South Africa); Professor Mary Jane Rotheram-Borus (University of California, Los Angeles, USA); Ms Nokwanele Mbewu (Philani, … Read More

The Essential Package of ECD Services and Support to vulnerable children in South Africa

Svetlana DonevaFlagship Products

Working with key government departments, Ilifa Labantwana has developed the Essential Package of ECD Services and Support – a “foundation document” that will underlie a dramatic shift in the way that early childhood services and support are delivered to vulnerable children in South Africa. Since its entry into the ECD arena in 2007, Ilifa Labantwana has pursued the goal of … Read More

Into the Future – Ilifa Labantwana Phase II 2013-2016

Svetlana DonevaFlagship Products

The importance of ECD for human and social development and productivity is now recognised as a national priority at the highest levels of government. In Phase I of its programme (2009-13), Ilifa demonstrated a variety of modes of ECD service and delivery. This publication details the six strategic objectives of Phase II (2013-2016). The importance of ECD for human and … Read More

Overcoming barriers in the provision of key nutrition interventions for young children in the public health system in South Africa

Svetlana DonevaResearch and Policy Briefs

Adequate nutrition during the first 1,000 days of a child’s life are crucial to his or her survival, optimal growth, development, and cognitive and social-emotional functioning. Investing in effective infant nutrition also has long-term benefits in school outcomes and economic productivity. This publication, authored by Michael K. Hendricks (School of Child and Adolescent Health, UCT) and Sipho Dlamin (UCT, formerly DGMT), … Read More

Survey of Non-Profit Organisations Providing Training for ECD Programmes and Services (birth to 4 years)

Svetlana DonevaTechnical Reports

The ECD Non-Profit (NPO) training sector has played a prominent role over a period of decades in the design and implementation of ECD projects. This study provides important insights into the size, scope, capacity and geographic distribution of NPOs involved in training for ECD projects and programmes for children aged 0–4.  Early childhood development (ECD) is receiving significant official attention, … Read More

The Ilifa Labantwana Story

Svetlana DonevaECD News, Flagship Products

The year 2013 brought the first Phase of the Ilifa Labantwana programme to an end, and ushered in the second phase. Two new publications record this moment. The first of these, entitled “A Quantum Leap: The Ilifa labantwana story 2009-2013” gives a brief overview of the history of the programme and details the major achievements of the first Phase. Click … Read More

The Essential Package – a model for Early Childhood Development

Svetlana DonevaECD News, Flagship Products

[topswf swf=’http://www.ilifalabantwana.co.za/wp-View Postcontent/themes/ilifalabantwana/images/essentials_animation.swf’ width=’600′ height=’420′ quality=’best’ wmode=’transparent’ scale=’default’ flashvars=” allowfullscreen=’false’]   CLICK THE BOX TO SEE THE COMPONENTS (wait for icons to load) Sixty percent of all South African children (more than 18 million) are born poor and vulnerable. Ilifa Labantwana is committed to establishing a model for the enhanced delivery of early childhood development (ECD) services and support to … Read More