When someone says Children’s Week, do you think of babies?

When someone says Children’s Week, do you think of babies?


Children’s Week (19th – 27th October) is a time when Tweddle celebrate the rights of babies and toddlers to enjoy childhood regardless of race, colour, sex, ability, religion, nationality or social origin. It is also a time to celebrate how amazing babies are, especially as they are the future of Victoria.

Children’s Week is also a time when Tweddle highlights the need for services, funding bodies, policy makers and practitioners to differentiate the needs of babies and toddlers, specifically in the first 1000 days (conception to a child’s 2nd birthday) when 80% of a child’s brain is developed and the foundations for lifelong social, emotional and physical health are formed.

When someone says Children’s Week -do you think of babies and toddlers? The World Association for Infant Mental Health (WAIMH) thinks you should. They released a position paper on the rights of infants to highlight the unique needs of babies and toddlers compared to those of older children.

So why is this window so critical? According to the Harvard University, Centre on The Developing Child, during the first 1000 days, the interactions of genes and experience shape a baby’s developing brain. It has been calculated that from birth to age 18 months, connections in the brain are created at a rate of a million per second, shaped by very early experiences. Although genes provide the blueprint for the formation of brain circuits, these circuits are reinforced by repeated use. A major ingredient in this developmental process is the serve and return interaction between children and their parents and other caregivers in the family or community.

The first two years is a time in human development that is unmatched by any other point in life. Tweddle encourage parents, carers, health professionals and employers to band together to increase policy-makers’ awareness of the unique needs of infants toddlers, their families and crucial support services like Tweddle, that strengthen families and relationships for life.

by Kerrie Gottliebsen

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