‘Not enough’ done to help early development – Kateon November 26, 2022 at 1:48 am

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The Princess of Wales says the years from pregnancy to age five fundamentally impact people’s lives.

The Princess of Wales talks to two children on a visit to a nursery in January 2020Image source, Getty Images

“Not enough is being done” to support the early development of children and nurture their potential, the Princess of Wales has said.

Catherine wrote in the Daily Telegraph that she wants to use her position to “shine a light on this issue”.

By focusing on the first five years, a “healthier and happier society for future generations” could be created.

The mother-of-three has long been a champion of early years development and the importance these years play.

“It is the way we develop through our experiences, relationships and interactions at that very young age that shapes everything from our ability to form relationships and succeed at work, to our mental and physical health as adults,” she wrote.

“There are fantastic examples of what can be achieved when we recognise the unique potential of early childhood and build a safe and loving world around a child.”

She said that the years from pregnancy to the age of five fundamentally impact people’s lives, building the core foundations which allow them to thrive as adults.

Catherine added that it is now understood that the human brain develops faster in the first five years than at any other time, meaning those years are “hugely significant”.

“But not enough is being done. If we are going to tackle the sorts of complex challenges we face today like homelessness, violence and addiction, which are so often underpinned by poverty and poor mental health, we have to fully appreciate those most preventative years and do everything we can to nurture our children and those who care for them,” she added.

“We have an incredible opportunity, armed with all we now know as a result of the work of dedicated scientists, researchers and practitioners, to make a huge difference to the mental and physical health of generations to come.

“That is why I am determined to continue to shine a light on this issue and to do everything I can to secure much greater focus on those first crucial few years for the youngest members of our society – they are, after all, our future.”

Last year, Catherine launched her own Centre for Early Childhood to raise awareness of the importance of early years.

At the time, a royal aide said Catherine felt early childhood was the “social equivalent to climate change” but that it was not discussed with the same seriousness.

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