Dr. Almina Pardhan, Yasmeen Mehboob and Seema Lassi are among the faculty at AKU-IED that have received a number of grants to conduct studies in the field of early childhood development.
The first project titled Harnessing ECD potential in COVID-19 in remote areas of northern Pakistan (Gilgit-Baltistan and Chitral) was funded through a Global Affairs Canada Grant and Aga Khan Foundation Canada routed through Aga Khan Foundation Pakistan. Under this grant the researchers completed the following tasks:
Adapted, wrote, translated and disseminated through SMS, Newsletter and Newspaper ECD parental tips and safety and health tips in alignment with Pakistan's National Early Childhood Care and Education Curriculum (2020).
Developed the Reading for Children Birth to Three Years Old Facilitator's Manual
Created the AKU-IED ECED Teacher Guide (2nd Edition) (for post-COVID preschool re-opening.
The Bezos Family Foundation is funding the project titled Adapt and contextualize Vroom materials for parents of children from birth to 5 years old. The principal team comprises Dr. Almina Pardhan and Seema Lassi.
Aga Khan University, through the Institute of Educational Development and Human Development Programme, and Aga Khan Rural Support Programme, Pakistan are contextualizing and adapting the Vroom-parenting education resource (birth to 5 years old) to integrate into early childhood programmes in Ghizer District, Gilgit-Baltistan. The goal is to advance ECD outcomes in underserved areas Pakistan by reaching caregivers with evidence based, locally relevant, user-friendly educational resources (Vroom messages) to improve the capacity of caregivers to support the development of children under five.
Vroom is a global program of the Bezos Family Foundation. The goal of Vroom is to provide science-based tips and tools to inspire families in their everyday caregiving practices to give their children a great start in life and create a bright future for them.
And finally, Dr. Pardhan is leading a team to deliver an intervention for midwives. Titled Transforming healthcare delivery of midwives in Pakistan through professional development which integrates early child development to support parents' nurturing care for children's early development, this study is being funded through an AKU Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Grant. This intervention is being conducted in collaboration with AKU-IED and the Aga Khan University School of Nursing and Midwifery.
Midwives are participating in an innovative professional development intervention designed by the research team. The professional development aims to enhance the midwives' healthcare delivery by integrating early child development into their clinical practice, and to understand the influence of the training on this.