Strengthening support to ECD in home visiting

Home visiting for
Early Childhood Development

In Europe and Central Asia, home visiting services are present in most countries and reach almost all families. Thus, they have the potential to support a large number of parents and young children. Home visiting services are unique because they take place in a family home, allowing professionals to observe parents/caregivers and children in their natural environment. Home visitors can assess social and environmental factors affecting child development and parental wellbeing and tailor the support to the family's individual needs. Home visiting is an excellent strategy for reaching the most vulnerable families, who might come less frequently into contact with health facilities. Home visitors also connect families with other services.

Therefore, to unlock the potential of home visits to improve pregnant women and young children’s health and development, it is desired that home visitors support responsive and nurturing care, prevention of child maltreatment, how to create a stimulating and safe home environment, and early detection of risk and vulnerability. Home visitors have to be empowered to deliver this kind of service and supported by a system that recognizes the untapped potential of this provision.