The Association of Early Childhood Development in Malawi (AECM) has challenged journalists in the country to raise the importance of early childhood development in Malawi.
AECDMâ€™s executive director Charles Gwengwe made the remarks in Blantyre on Monday during a day-long media training for journalists in early childhood development (ECD).
â€œThe challenges of repetitionsâ€”which hover at 20 percent in our schools and dropouts in primary school, I have always argued, reflect a serious problem that roots from our countryâ€™s failure to prioritise early childhood development as a tool for development.Â
â€œEven when scientific research has proved beyond reasonable doubt that 80 percent of human brain development takes place between conception and when the baby turns three, as a country, we are yet to recognise how crucial this period is. ECD profile is still very low. There are so many who just do not understand it,â€ he said.Â
Gwengwe said with constant publications and airing of ECD-related stories, the publicâ€™s mindset will begin to change.
Speaking at the workshop, lecturer in education at Chancellor College Dr Foster Kholowa said without involvement of the media, ECD in Malawi will always remain a neglected area.
â€œWe need to inform the nation that the future of Malawi does not depend on the current generation. It is already spoilt. It depends on how we harness the best out of the children, and that is only possible if we begin to see ECD in a different way,â€ said Kholowa.
The training drew journalists from the print and electronic media houses in the country.