Alas works to ensure that governments and civil society in Latin America understand the importance of ECD.
Since its creation, ALAS Foundation has aimed to increase social awareness about the reality of vulnerable children under age 6 in the Region and to call upon the promotion of high quality early childhood programs (early learning, nutrition and health), supported by comprehensive public policies. In this sense, ALAS works to ensure that civil society and especially governments in Latin America understand the importance of Early Childhood Development (ECD) and its impact on the social, economic and political development and growth of any society.
Thus, we use our high media impact to convene strategic allies, promote the design of public policies and the implementation of comprehensive care programs, and to increase investment in ECD. Among the advocacy activities led by ALAS, the following stand out:
2008: ALAS’ great concert for children in Argentina and Mexico
This was the first massive initiative that introduced Early Childhood Development (ECD) to the Latin American society. As part of the strategy, two parallel concerts were held in Mexico and Argentina, seeking to spread ALAS Foundation’ message.
Several artists participated in the two concerts, bringing together more than 400,000 spectators. Among these artists were: Shakira, Aleks Syntek, Alejandro Lerner, Alejandro Sanz, Ana Torroja, Babasonicos, Calle 13, Chayanne, David Bisbal, Diego Torres, Emmanuel, Fito Páez, Gustavo Cerati, Jorge Drexler, Juan Luis Guerra, Lucero, La Portuaria, Miguel Bosé, Maná, Mercedes Sosa, Paulina Rubio, Pedro Aznar, Ricardo Montaner, Ricky Martin, Tania Libertad, Tigres del Norte and Timbiriche. Both events were broadcasted in 13 countries.
Find out more about the concerts!
2008: Forum: “Children of Latin America, a future without poverty” in New York
In Columbia University, ALAS summoned 5 Latin American presidents from Argentina, El Salvador, Mexico, Panama and Paraguay in order to promote the design of comprehensive ECD public policies.
2008, 2009, 2012: Participation and incidence of ALAS in 3 Ibero-American Summits.
The objective: to include commitments to early childhood on Presidents’ agendas.
2009: In partnership with the Earth Institute of Columbia University, ALAS established the ECD Secretariat for Latin America and the Caribbean.
The Secretariat was established thanks to the participation of more than 30 international experts and representatives from 7 different governments (Argentina, Chile, Colombia, El Salvador, Mexico, Panama and Paraguay).
As a result, two early childhood development and public policies guides were published, which include an analysis of the state of early childhood in the region and a diagnosis and characterization of ECD programs, along with recommendations.
- Executive Summary of ECD Report (Spanish-only content)
- Commitment to universal coverage of ECD programs
2012: ALAS participated in the Americas Summit and chaired an event with more than 30 activists and latin american leaders to encourage private investment in Early Childhood.
2014: METRO alliance
Thanks to the support of Cristina Stenbeck, Chairman of Kinnevik’ Board of Directors and majority shareholder of Millicom, ALAS established an alliance with METRO International on April 2014. This partnership allowed the production of different articles about early childhood development that were published by METRO in Latin America.
In total, six articles were published and replicated in 6 countries in the region: Chile, Colombia, Guatemala, Mexico, Nicaragua and Peru, reaching an estimated of 1.8 million readers and 10.4 million unique visits on the webpage. These articles included interviews with experts and testimonies of children and families that have benefited from different ECD programs, including those supported by ALAS.
In addition, METRO published a special edition focused on Early Childhood, in which Shakira participated as a special guest talking about the importance of early childhood development and ALAS’ activities in the Region. Shakira’s article was published in Colombia, Peru, Chile, Mexico, Nicaragua, Puerto Rico and Brazil, which is equivalent to 3.8 million readers and 12.9 million unique visits on the webpage.
2016: National Law for Early Childhood was approved in Colombia
On June 15th of 2016, the Colombian Congress approved the “Zero to Always” Law, by which financial and programmatic sustainability for comprehensive early childhood care in Colombia is secured. For this, Shakira and ALAS Foundation played a vital role joining the international community and civil society’s efforts in prompting the legislators to move forward on the required debates to pass this bill in a timely manner. In this respect, the status of the Government’s Strategy was upgraded to a National Law, reaching a new milestone in the legal framework for this segment of the population.
Learn more about Shakira’s and ALAS advocacy actions on this subject: press release, impact, and video. (Spanish-only content).