This is the fourth of a four-part blog series outlining the philosophy behind our work, and the roadmap going forward. (See also pt. 1, pt. 2, and pt. 3.)

Our program may be growing to support whole countries in their nationwide programs, but the most important measure of our success remains the impact on children in the childcare system and in the childcare settings we work with. Third-party evaluation of our results has shown that it improves* developmental outcomes for vulnerable children, as shown across multiple developmental domains:

Intellectual Development

At baseline, 82% of children scored as though intellectually disabled on the Battelle Development Inventory. In less than two years, only 14% of children scored as though intellectually disabled, which reflects a 62% decrease in children presenting as if they had intellectual disability.

Physical Development

Children experienced a 46% increase in height and 34% increase in weight with no changes to nutrition.

Relationship Development

The social-emotional relationship between caregiver and children improved by 150% as noted by the the Caregiver-Child Social/Emotional and Relationship Rating Scale (CCSERRS).

Behavioral Development

Negative behaviors such as aggression, withdrawal, and self-stimulation were reduced by 43% in children.

The Importance of Measurement

In partnership with Duke University, Whole Child developed WCI-QCUALS (Quality of Care in Limited-Resource Settings), a measurement tool that allows agencies to assess the quality of care in childcare facilities. Third-party evaluation by Duke University confirmed that WCI-QCUALS works better than other standardized tools used in limited-resource childcare settings, and that the outcomes from this tool correlate to children’s well-being.

* As measured in five residential care centers in Managua, Nicaragua. (2012 Groark, C. J., McCall, R. B., McCarthy, S. K., Eichner, J. C., Warner, H. A., Salaway, J. and Palmer, K. (2012) The Effects of a Social-Emotional Intervention on Caregivers and Children in Five Central American Institutions University of Pittsburgh Office of Child Development, Prepared for: Whole Child International and the Inter-American Development Bank under Technical Cooperation ATN/KP-12327-NI; 2013 Groark, CJ; McCall, RB, McCarthy, SK, Eichner, JC,Warner, HA, Salaway, J, Palmer, K, Lopez, ME. (2013). “The Effects of a Social–Emotional Intervention on Caregivers and Children With Disabilities in Two Central American Institutions.” Infants & Young Children. Vol. 26, No. 4, pp. 286–305)