Children's Spiritual Development
Affirming the human dignity of young children, and fostering their spiritual development and right to grow up in safe, respectful, and violence-free environments
The Consortium, convened by Arigatou International, brings together civil society and faith-based organizations, religious and spiritual communities, multilateral organizations, academia and individual experts.
With a membership of 18 organizations and 4 individual experts, the Consortium aims to foster collaboration, share good practices and develop evidence-based and innovative approaches to integrate values-based education and spirituality in early childhood for the prevention of violence and the holistic development of children.
Nurturing the Spiritual Development of Children in the Early Years - A Contribution to the Protection of Children from Violence and the Promotion of Their Holistic Well-Being
Develop jointly by the members of the Consortium, this Toolkit aims to enhance the engagement of religious and spiritual leaders and faith actors in taking an active role in influencing parents, caregivers and educators to foster children’s holistic well-being by nurturing their spiritual development in the early years and contributing to the protection of children from violence.
The Toolkit presents a model for fostering the spiritual development of children that involves building positive relationships with the child, creating a safe, respectful and violence-free environment, and providing empowering experiences for children to safely pursue and nourish their own spiritual development.
This Toolkit is developed primarily for religious and spiritual communities and the variety of faith actors who work with families and children at the community level. It can also be used by others who wish to incorporate a spiritual component into programming with children and families, and it can serve civil society organizations interested in working with religious and spiritual communities.
INSPIREd Faith Communities: Nurturing Values and Spirituality in Early Childhood for the Prevention of Violence
In 2019, the Consortium developed a set of five country-specific advocacy booklets to raise awareness about the importance of children’s wellbeing during the early years under the title INSPIREd Faith Communities: Nurturing Values and Spirituality in Early Childhood for the Prevention of Violence.
The booklets connect theological reflections with neuroscience to support parents, caregivers, educators, and their communities to provide nurturing care and safe environments for children, aiming to prevent all forms of violence. The set of booklets was built based on the reflections collected during five roundtable discussions organized in Brazil, India, Kenya, Lebanon and Sri Lanka.
More than 600 religious leaders, representatives from governments as well as faith-based and civil society organizations, experts on children’s issues, academics, pediatricians and educators took part in these roundtable discussions.
The advocacy booklets are part of the Consortium’s commitment to developing materials to support holistic approaches to early childhood that contribute to the prevention of violence against children. They provide reflections, local examples, and concrete ideas on how to bring about change at all levels of society. Through these resources, the members of the Consortium seek to inspire individual and collective action.