Posts written by “Sadaf Shallwani


Children forming a circle and joining hands outside in Zambia

Our next phase in early childhood development: diving deeper into quality and expanding to birth-to-3

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Studies show early childhood development (ECD) is critical to a child’s ability to succeed in school and has implications on achievement later in life.  This is especially true for children who have been affected by poverty, violence, and HIV and AIDS.  However, few children have access to quality early childhood services in Africa, especially in rural areas.  Today, less than 12% of African children have access to Early Childhood Care and Education Services.  Over the last few years, Firelight has [...]

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21st century blog

Reflections on recent site visits to education partners in Tanzania

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Our partners in our Grassroots Innovations in Early Learning initiative are implementing a range of innovative approaches to improve children’s early development and learning in Tanzania. Recently, I had the honor of visiting three of these partners, and getting a first-hand look at some of the wonderful work that they are doing. In Dar-es-Salaam, I spent some time with Organization for Community Development (OCODE). OCODE works with communities and local government to improve the learning environment in early primary, focusing particularly on [...]

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SAWA - Learning through Play

Community-driven innovations in early learning in Tanzania: Opportunities, lessons, and thoughts for the future

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Photo: Children learn through play at an ECD center started by Safina Women’s Association near Morogoro, Tanzania Firelight has long believed that community organizations are incredibly well placed to understand the needs of their community and what interventions will work best. That is why, in 2011, Firelight Foundation was thrilled to be chosen as the recipient of $1,225,000 from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation’s Early Learning Innovation Fund to support community-based innovative approaches that improve early learning in Tanzania. As a result [...]

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Initiative Update: Early Childhood Development

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Firelight is working with 18 grassroots organizations in Malawi, Tanzania, and Zambia to strengthen their programs in early childhood development and their organizational management. Over the last few months, our early childhood development (ECD) initiative partners from Tanzania, Zambia, and Malawi have been sending us their reports on their 2014 activities and proposals for activities in 2015. While we communicate with our partners throughout the year, the report and proposal process really give us a broader understanding of the activities they [...]

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