In most countries there is a lot of information about children: their age, their height, their weight, whether they are in school etc. But what do we know about their feelings? About their behaviour? Are they happy? Do they feel safe?
This week ICDI welcomed Amsale Mulugeta, Executive Director and Daniel Hailegebriel, Program Officer from Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) to kick off the start of the UPSI-5 project in Ethiopia.
This project – financial supported by Dioraphte – aims at improving the psychosocial well-being of young children, with an emphasis on those growing up in difficult circumstances.
ICDI has developed the UPSI-5 (Universal Psycho-Social Indicator for Five-Year-Old Boys and Girls), a simple, quick-to-administer-process, and thoroughly-tested tool to measure the psychosocial functioning of large groups of five-year-old children. It provides governments with vital data to track changes about children’s psychosocial well-being over time; to make comparisons among groups (e.g. rural versus urban populations); and to inform early childhood education and development (ECED) policies and services on a national and regional level.
This is a highly-needed and missing complement to the prevailing efforts that look exclusively at the physical aspects of children’s health, such as ‘Under-Five Mortality Rate (U5MR)’, ‘height-for-age’ and ‘height-for-weight’, or school enrollment.