Supported By: Conrad N. Hilton Foundation Grant
Location: Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique, Malawi and Zambia
Duration: 2017 – 2019
Child Development in Marginalized Communities (CDMC) is a cluster randomized trial of an integrated intervention programme for native and embedded refugee populations, aimed at improving their developmental conditions and resilience in early years (birth to 24 months). The project site is in Kawangware, a rapidly growing informal settlement in Nairobi, Kenya. The three-year project (2017 March to 2020 March), is funded by International Development Research Centre (IDRC) and Aga Khan Foundation Canada. (AKF-C)
The first part of this project is a formative study, intended to gather detailed information on the study site including services provision and utilization, community structures, state and non-state actors, developmental needs and opportunities to improve development and wellbeing of children and their families. The second part, will entail delivery of an integrated intervention involving an experimental and control group of 1200 families. Progress for each of the families will be evaluated at different data points throughout the project period, to determine child developmental outcomes. To ensure instrument validity and sensitivity to context, child development assessment tools will be tested, validated and adopted at the formative study phase.
The project aims at addressing nutrition, health and early learning, protective and responsive care to attain holistic and comprehensive developmental outcomes for children. The strategy for this project is to work with Community Health Volunteers (CHVs) and through their structures, to reach targeted families. The CHVs will be trained on delivery of the intervention package, coached and monitored through support supervision to ensure fidelity in implementation. The AKU- Institute for Human Development (IHD) and the Alliance for Human Development at the Lunenfeld Tanenbaum Research Institute in Toronto have partnered with the Aga Khan Foundation East Africa (AKF-EA) and Daraja Civic organization to execute the project on the ground.
The overall aim is to generate reliable evidence to support effective and scalable early childhood and family intervention for the most disadvantaged populations in low and middle income countries. This goal is especially important because families living in such marginalized environments face daunting risk factors, risks that are even greater for displaced/refugee families in informal settlements such as Kawangware.