EASPD invites you to join us for our International Conference: ‘Family-centred Early Childhood Intervention: How to make it work’. Hosted in Tirana, Albania on 8th-9th June 2023, the conference will focus on how to build policies and practices in the field of support for children with disabilities, or with developmental difficulties, and their families. The conference will address the key elements of family-centred Early Childhood Intervention (ECI) practices and the creation of national ECI systems. It will also share the result of the EASPD and UNICEF joint action on emergency early childhood development for those who have been impacted by the war.
In addition to the conference, EASPD members can also attend the Board meeting (for board members only on 7th June), Member Fora meetings (on the 8th-9th June) and the General Assembly (7th June).
Working language of the conference: English.
Real-time captioning: provided during all plenary sessions and selected workshops.
Other accessibility needs can be also accommodated upon request, including interpretation into Albanian Sign Language, Albanian, Serbo-Croatian and Russian.
Conference Venue: Tirana International Hotel & Conference Center, Sheshi Skënderbej 8, Tirana 1001, Albania.
Registrations are open. The deadline for registrations is 8th May 2023.
The conference is co-hosted by the European Association of Service providers for Persons with Disabilities, Down Syndrome Albania Foundation, Help the Life and UNICEF.
The European Association of Service providers for Persons with Disabilities (EASPD) represents the interests of over 20,000 social care and support service providers for persons with disabilities across 41 countries.
Down Syndrome Albania Foundation (DSA) is an NGO established in 2013, aiming to improve the lives of children and youth with intellectual disabilities, by providing services to them and to their families. DSA advocates for the rights of people with disabilities in Albania and also contributes to the capacity building of the professionals that work and care for children with disabilities. Awareness, inclusion, advocacy, and support are fundamental to DSA’s mission.
Help the Life Association is an NGO established in 1998 by parents of children and youth with intellectual and physical disabilities. It contributes to the improvement of life and inclusion of people with intellectual and physical disabilities (PWD) in social-economic life, through the provision of psycho-socio-educational services. Help the Life contributes to the capacity building of the professionals that work for children with disabilities and strengthen the well-being of their families. The organization is also focused on raising awareness, advocating for the rights of PwD, and lobbying to improve policies for people with disability in Albania.
UNICEF is an agency of the United Nations responsible for providing humanitarian and developmental aid to children worldwide. With a presence in 192 countries and territories, UNICEF's activities include providing immunizations and disease prevention, administering treatment for children and mothers with HIV, enhancing childhood and maternal nutrition, improving sanitation, promoting education, and providing emergency relief in response to disasters. The Emergency Early Childhood Development Support for Ukrainian Refugees project (ECDUR) and consequently this conference is being implemented in partnership with UNICEF and with support from the U. S. Government.
Rationale of the conference
Hosted in Tirana, Albania on 8th - 9th June, the conference will focus on how to build policies and practices in the field of support for children with disabilities, or with developmental difficulties, and their families. The conference will address the key elementsof family-centred Early Childhood Intervention (ECI) practices and the creation of national ECI systems. It will also share the result of the EASPD and UNICEF joint action on emergency early childhood development for those who have been impacted by the war.
In July 2022, as a response to the Ukraine war, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and EASPD launched a project that will increase the availability of trained Family Consultants who will provide Early Childhood Development parental counselling and support to children at risk of or with developmental difficulties and disabilities. The project will also support system strengthening for the provision of ECI services in host countries as well as raise awareness of the importance of early support for developing the potential for every child.
The conference objectives will include:
- Raising public awareness around family-centred ECI benefits and functioning
- Highlighting good practices and methodologies in the field of ECI
- Sharing the experience of service provision to Ukraine refugees in neighbouring countries
- Zooming in on the Balkans, highlighting specific challenges and opportunities for the region
- Discussing the creation of national ECI systems and the role of the EU in facilitating it
- Encouraging greater commitment of policy makers in prioritising ECI and Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) policies across Europe.