We have been active in Brazil since the 1980s, testing new models for delivering childcare, preschool and parent support services and building relationships with public authorities, business leaders and influential philanthropists to advocate for more attention to early childhood. In recent years our partners have seen growing success in influencing policy and budget decisions up to national level.

With more than five in six Brazilians now living in cities, our Urban95 programme is a natural evolution of our longstanding work with city leaders to minimise the effects on young children of the country’s widespread problems with urban public security. We are also building on this experience by exploring how best to bundle support for parenting with programmes to find work for the urban unemployed.

Children painting bright, child-friendly designs on the walls along the footpath, Criança Fala project. Glicério, Liberdade district, São Paulo, Brazil | Photo: Juliana Rosa/Prosa e Fotografia

In rural areas of Brazil, our years of experience with supporting parents through health-oriented home visiting programmes have positioned us to work with others who have the capacity to take these approaches to scale. We will also continue to support the National Network for Early Childhood, an advocacy coalition we initiated in 2006, to keep early childhood high on the country’s political agenda.


A few examples of partnerships in Brazil:

Instituto Alana produced a movie and TV series on the importance of a child’s first 1,000 days, presenting the technical, scientific evidence in a persuasive, emotionally impactful way.

Fundação Maria Cecilia Souto Vidigal is piloting and collecting evidence on the effectiveness of three new models of supporting parents. Focusing on home visiting, SMS, and premature babies, these models emerged from an earlier competition to generate ideas.

United Way held a summit for Latin American business leaders prior to the June 2016 World Economic Forum meeting in Colombia, to encourage them to support and advocate for early childhood programmes and policies with proven impact.