Play-based early childhood development programs


Development Initiative

Education theme

Delivery systems; Education and society; Inclusion; Policy and research

Focus by region

Africa, Asia

Yidan Prize funds grows play-based early childhood development programs

Addressing the need for play-based early childhood development programs in resource constrained communities

The Yidan Prize funds will be used to expand upon BRAC’s work of implementing play-based early childhood development (ECD) programs and to create and refine high impact, scalable ECD solutions which will ultimately improve the physical, cognitive, psychosocial and language development of children aged 0 to 6. This includes exploring the possibilities of integrating technology in low resource settings, offering support to parents, and training play leaders.

Through a series of initiatives, the prize funds will also be used to address the needs of children and families in resource constrained communities and humanitarian contexts. Initiatives in the series include: 

  • Piloting the Home-Based Play Lab Childcare model in Bangladesh that solves the need for childcare services and in turn empowers women to pursue a career. Establish 20 Childcare centers and share the knowledge and expertise of BRAC’s play labs model with childcare providers through curriculum and training. The program aims to recruit young women from the local community, offer them the technical assistance and support to run their own childcare enterprise or franchise, as well as provide monitoring for quality assurance. During this pandemic, the Yidan prize fund has contributed in the development of the telecommunication model known as “Pashe Achhi” (Beside you) to provide psychosocial support integrated with play-based learning through weekly telephone calls to caregivers and children within communities.
  • Piloting the Humanitarian Play Lab (HPL) model in Uganda. Set up 10 child-friendly spaces to contextualize the model for future implementation and scalability in other humanitarian settings. In addition, the program aims to explore the minimal technical support needed to sustain the existing 25 play labs in Uganda.
  • ECD in Government Primary schools of Tanzania. Set up 30 play labs, co-located with the Tanzanian government and expand the capacities of local government teachers.
  • Studying the effectiveness of BRAC’s existing programs in different contexts, which can be used to advocate the scale-up of play-based interventions. The assessments will focus on the Humanitarian Play Labs in Rohingya setting, as well as child development outcomes of 3 to 5-year-old students in Bangladesh, Uganda, and Tanzania.
  • Continuing the development of the Play Lab model through partnerships. BRAC’s existing partners, who have widely contributed in the development of the play lab and telecommunication models, include Sesame Workshop, International Rescue Committee, LEGO Foundation, Columbia University, the University of Cambridge, and New York University.