South African children are disadvantaged by multiple, intersecting social, health, education and economic factors. This is compounded by fragmented services and a lack of co-operation between the health, welfare and education sectors serving children and families.
Integrated, multidisciplinary interventions enabled by intersectoral collaborations between these sectors may improve outcomes for children and families. To pilot such an intervention, the DST/NRF Chair in Welfare and Social Development at the CSDA, Prof Leila Patel established an intersectoral Community of Practice research project, bringing together experts and stakeholders from the education, welfare and healthcare sectors to support child health and wellbeing. Together the team developed a groundbreaking child wellbeing
tracking tool to assess the physical and psychosocial wellbeing of early grade learners and to inform an intervention that holistically supports
children and their families.
In the first webinar on this exciting project, we shared findings from the first wave of data gathered from 162 children. We looked at how children are faring in terms of health, economic, family, mental health and education domains and how the CoP plans to support high risk children. This research is supported by the National Research Foundation.