Early Life

Early Life - it's up to all of us

The period known as the “First Thousand Days” is a once-in-a-lifetime window of brain development.  From conception to two years, every little life is developing at a rate that will never be repeated.  This presents a great opportunity for positive investment: the right things done in the right way will yield profound impact in the child’s life.  It is also a time of vulnerability: risk factors can be at play, hindering a child’s development.

The church community is ideally positioned to support families to provide the kind of care that babies need to thrive. To this end, Common Good launched Sikunye, an initiative to inspire and equip churches to be supportive communities to families. Explore Sikunye’s work and consider supporting them to strengthen churches across the country to see children reach their God-given potential.

But what can you do?  What is your part to play in growing greatness in young lives?  We believe the resources below will guide and shape what you can do, in the context you are in, to be investing in young lives and establishing new pathways of flourishing.

South Africa's great potential

An invitation to invest in South Africa’s greatest opportunity: children in the first thousand days of life

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Parents first

If you want to see baby flourish, think first about the parent.

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Dads don't babysit

The crucial part fathers have in baby’s life

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First Thousand Day friendly workspaces

10 things for employers to consider to make their workplace more FTD friendly

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New Life

How you can journey with those who are expecting

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0-3 months

The fourth trimester

Ways you can love and support families with newborns (aka the fourth trimester)

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3 - 12 months

On the move

The first year has so many milestones. How can you bless caregivers in this wonderful season?

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12 - 24 months

Toddler years

One year left in the first thousand days. This is how you can support caregivers to see their children flourish.

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Jesus and his first thousand days

Yes, there were shepherds, and Magi, and traveling to Bethlehem. But the central event of this story is often lacking in details: Jesus, an infant, was born. What does this mean for us?

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Devotional Content: Why young children matter

Join Sikunye on this 20 day devotional journey.  We hope you are challenged and inspired to see families and children in new ways and that you, along with others in your church, form communities of care around them.

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Explore this topic further...

The beginning of life

When you pay attention to the beginning of story, you can change the whole story

Baby talk for Dads

By Unicef

In the absence of the village, mothers struggle most

“Village life fostered a sense of safety, inclusivity, purpose, acceptance and importance. These essential elements of thriving were built in. Now? We’re being forced to create all of that for ourselves within a society that has physically and energetically restructured itself around a whole new set of priorities.”

A compelling article from Mother.ly

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First 1000 Days

“Children thrive on the interaction they have with their primary caregivers. The more a mother talks and laughs and sings with her child, the more the child feels safe and secure and is able to explore her world – learning and developing as she goes. But a mother who is depressed, or young, or on her own, or without a job, may find herself struggling with the demands that a newborn child suddenly places on her…”

From DGMT changesa.dgmt.co.za/first-1000-days