Bangladesh has been recognized for its great success in improving educational and health outcomes during the past few decades. With its Early Years Preschool Program, Save the Children has been providing an additional year of preschool to four-year-old children, who then progress to the one-year government preprimary class at age five and to first grade at age six. AIR is investigating the impacts of offering this additional year of preschool education in Bangladesh on child development outcomes (cognitive and social emotional), and will examine the benefits relative to the costs of the program.
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Malnutrition is one of the most serious global health problems. Advancing the knowledge base about the effects of nutrition and early childhood development programs on nutrition outcomes is particularly important in Bangladesh. AIR is evaluating a large-scale nutrition program and a pilot program to combat malnutrition in the country.
In resource-limited settings such as Southern Africa, malnutrition and infectious diseases need to be an integral part of thinking about early childhood interventions. AIR conducted a cluster-randomized trial to test the feasibility and preliminary impact of a package of community-based early childhood services in a rural area of Zambia.