A joint initiative of Next generation and the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation, Too Small to Fail aims to help parents, caregivers, educators, communities and businesses take specific, meaningful and evidence-based actions to improve the health and well-being of america's youngest children, ages zero to five, and prepare them to succeed in the 21st century.
Improving the health and well-being of america's youngest children isn't just the right thing to do -- it's the economically smart thing to do. Our nation's future, and our ability to compete in an increasingly globalized economy, depends on it. Research conducted over the past few decades and across multiple disciplines has shown that early health and learning directly impacts an individual's long-term productivity and success, and our country's economic well-being. Other countries, including emerging economies like India and China, are making substantial investments in the learning, health and care of their youngest children. Yet, in the United States, many children don't receive the basic nutrition they need in the earliest years of life. Many start kindergarten unprepared, lagging in critical skills from vocabulary acquisition and early numeracy to attention span and self-control. more and more grow up with chronic health conditions ranging from obesity to asthma to autism.
This is no way to train the leaders, entrepreneurs and workers of tomorrow. What's worse, many parents don't realize that they can take specific actions in the first months and years of their child's life to insure their child's long-term success.That's the bad news. But there is good news, too. right now, more than at any moment in our history, we have the knowledge and tools to meet these challenges head-on. First, we know more than ever before about how early interactions and nutrition shape lifelong brain development, and we have proof that investments in health and well-being during a child's earliest years yield high social and economic returns. Second, new technologies and expanded access to existing tools make it easier to connect with parents and caregivers, provide them with useful information, and motivate them to act. Finally, there is a growing commitment and interest from government, business leaders, communities and parents to prioritize and support early childhood development.
Too Small to Fail is founded on the principle that it will take all of us together to prepare our youngest Americans for success in the 21st century. government investment and policy changes are part of that equation, but not the whole solution. We believe that small acts can have a big impact on our kids.this moment in time presents a tremendous opportunity to communicate to all americans what child development experts have known for a long time: what we do for our kids matters -- not just to them, but to all of us.