Raising Vibrant Children
By almost any statistical measure, children in North America today are losing ground compared to the recent past. Their educational performance is lower and does not compare well with many other developed nations. Health status, as shown in the incidence and prevalence of such things as obesity, juvenile diabetes, and other disorders and diseases are on the rise. More children, due to economic and social context have less hope of upward social mobility than in the last 30 years. Public support and investment in programs that will provide support and assistance to children in need are at risk as states slash budgets.
Yet, the evidence for the benefit of investment in children is clear. We are learning more than ever before about the development of children’s brains, bodies, and emotional resilience, and how important it is that even from the earliest ages, children have appropriate social, emotional, and physical care. We know that relational development and health through the child life cycle into and beyond adolescence plays a pivotal role in long term health and functioning. Further, we know there are strategies for prevention and intervention in the early years that work. They produce positive, beneficial long term effects in physical and relational health, and in increasing the possibility of becoming productive , healthy, and generative contributors in society.