These are remarks by various stakeholders at the end of a two – week training for Early Childhood Development mentors in Zomba, courtesy of The Hunger Project
Speaking during the closing ceremony for the two-week long training for Early Childhood Development mentors, Vice-Board Chairperson for The Hunger Project, Rosemary Nhlema said Early Childhood Development is a critical stage for mental growth. She described such trainings to be a catalyst for academic excellence.
“Every child, were possible, must start his/her academic journey through ECD steps. It is disheartening to see a pupil failing to distinguish colours say purple from Maroon; this is clear evidence why ECD Services need to be accelerated in the country,” said Nhlema.
Her remarks were echoed by Head of Programs for The Hunger Project, Mackenzie Nkalapa who said the overarching mission of The Hunger Project is to end poverty and hunger as such education remains a key for achieving all set goals. He links quality education in formative years to academic excellence too.
“The only way to deal with poverty and hunger is to encourage every guardian and parent to send children to ECD circles. They will be well prepared for primary school and eventually most of such children end up graduating at the university all things being equal,” remarked Nkalapa.
One of the facilitators to the training was ECD Quality Control Officer in the Ministry of Gender, Disability and Social welfare Chikondi Mponda. She said the training exposed various gaps in the delivery of Early Childhood Development lessons. She then recommended conducting such trainings on a regular basis, to ensure delivery of quality ECD services in the country. “These mentors will go back home armed with knowledge and technical skills for delivery of quality ECD services. If we could be conducting these trainings regularly, there will be great change on ECD education in the country.”
The training drew 20 participants from 10 established epicenters of The Hunger Project, spread across the country