The University of Northampton has today signed up to the 1001 critical days manifesto to ensure all babies have the best possible start in life.
Nationally, the 1001 Critical Days manifesto is a cross party strategy importance of intervening early in the 1001 critical days, between conception to age two, to enhance the outcomes for children. Northamptonshire is the first local authority to create a local version of the manifesto.
The Northamptonshire 1001 Critical Days manifesto sets out the commitment of key partners in county to adopt a holistic approach to enhancing the life prospects of young children – uniting those working across the Health, Social, early years and Education service providers.
Dr Eunice Lumsden, Head of Early Years said: “What we know is that intervening early is important across the life course and the earlier we intervene the greater impact on life chances. Living in poverty or being in care impacts on health, wellbeing and educational attainment. In Northamptonshire there are around 24,000 children living in poverty and 750 children in care at a cost in the region of £36,500 a year. Supporting the Manifesto provides a unique opportunity to improve life chances for these children.”
Dr Lumsden said: “The University of Northampton has a unique role to play in supporting the success of this Northamptonshire manifesto; through our academic programmes, we are able to educate, inspire and align the professionals of the future across Health, Education, early years and Social Care disciplines to create a holistic approach to creating services which are better able to respond to the needs of a families in the county.”
Speaking at the signing of the manifesto, University of Northampton Vice Chancellor, Nick Petford said: “Investing in the early years is vital for the economic future of Northamptonshire and the first 1001 days is a crucial stage in a child’s development. The students, staff and graduates of the University of Northampton have a unique opportunity to enhance the life opportunities for Northamptonshire’s children as they study, undertake work placements with the partners here today and go on to become practitioners themselves.
“The University as a whole is committed to the betterment of the Education, Health and Wellbeing of the county, as well as making Northamptonshire a place where children and young people flourish and learn. We can’t make this happen alone, that’s why I’m so delighted that many key partners from the fields of Health, Social Care and Education are here today showing their support for this manifesto.”
The manifesto has today, Monday 25 January, been signed by 26 partner organisations including the University of Northampton, Northamptonshire County Council, Northamptonshire Healthcare Foundation Trust, Nene and Corby Clinical Commissioning Groups, alongside local hospitals and children’s centre providers.