Whole Child International

Our goal is to ensure that all people who care for young children understand their need for attachment, know that they can effectively provide it in their existing settings, and are able and empowered to make it happen.


On behalf of institutionalized children throughout the world, Whole Child International is committed to the application of the most advanced knowledge and sophisticated research to childcare in orphanages and other institutions — on a global scale.

We know that orphanages and other institutions can be dramatically improved at relatively small cost. We focus our work on caregivers, teaching and implementing three basic childcare principles — primary caregiving, continuity of care, and small groups.

• Primary caregiving ensures that each child has the opportunity to create a meaningful attachment with one particular adult caregiver.
• Continuity of care means that this primary relationship is maintained for as long as possible, ideally until a permanent solution of adoption or family reunification is reached.
• Small groups are essential for children to develop and sustain relationships with their caregivers, peers, and environment.

The absence of these principles is in large part responsible for the poor outcomes typical for children raised in institutions. Even with limited resources and within existing facilities, they can be meaningfully implemented by working closely with childcare workers and administrators, connecting institutions' basic resources, and ensuring the long-term sustainability of these activities. By implementing these principles, Whole Child is working to realize its vision of helping ensure that every child has the chance to become a whole person.

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