How well do we fledge our young?

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Sat, 05/17/2008 - 23:16.

Robin fledgeling

Ten days ago I noticed a robin's next with three new-born chicks, and protective parents, living early Spring to the fullest. Already, the chicks are fledglings, having jumped yesterday from the safety of the nest to thrive or die on the ground, until their wings are strong enough to fly. I watched this fledgling hop and flap around for a while, as mom and dad protested from above. Certainly a critical time in the life of the robin, and I wonder how our three chicks did - are they still alive the next day - are they now part of the chorus of nature making NEO a great theater. Do we humans fledge our children as well, and make the theater of life better or worse for all living?.

 

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Not well at all

For all the hype that surrounded the Early Childhood Initiative in NEO awhile back, I see very little actual investment in our children and it makes me very sad.

I studied ornithology and I recently revisited Frank Chapman's Bird Life (1934).  I will give you my copy for your kids :)

Invest in NEO

With the births of Claes and Max in particular I've seen the benefits of Invest In Children in action. There are people and programs that make contact with pregnant women and provide prenatal care and early child support at the hospital and after birth - much of the GCLAC Lead Poisoning prevention program is being put under the umbrella of Invest In Children, so it is really a portfolio of actions addressing many issues of early childhood, under one brand and management structure, which looks solid. But it doesn't extend to providing childcare and other poverty and social services, so the scope is very focused on the youngest stages of development, from my experience (perhaps I just haven't accessed any such services?!?).

I believe this is funded at the County level and works pretty well. As far as lead poisoning prevention is concerned, I can say it is a collaboration of 100 partners at every level of government, healthcare and community development imaginable, so there is no one point of responsibility and failure - a true team effort!

If you are able to create healthy babies, and teach parents to do at least a few smart things to raise and protect them, like from lead, then there are real challenges for parents to find high quality daycare, preschool, and K-12 education, and keep children safe, and provide them with stimulating activities after school, when so many homes are broken and parents work long hours and children have very like parental support, and in many cases the parents are the children's biggest problems. To address all that, we need an "Invest in Adults" initiative.

Interestingly, at our last GCLAC Steering Committee meeting, when we discussed making childhood lead poisoning prevention part of Invest In Children responsibility (e.g. prenatal screening for lead in mothers, and during well child visits they inspect for lead hazards in the home), I suggested we need a similar campaign called "Invest In Home", to focus more broadly on healthy homes, to address lead poisoning beyond the scope of Invest In Children.

So we need Invest In Children + Adults + Home = Invest in NEO

Disrupt IT

Cost of child poverty in the US

 

The 3 Hs

  The United States or Third World country?

Hardship, Humiliation and Hunger are not solved by Hand-outs.  When will we learn?