Dr. Dina Castro and Dr. Ruth Paris join Wheelock College Dean Dr. David Chard on trip to Lesotho

Earlier this year, Institute Director, Dina Castro, and Associate Director for Research, Ruth Paris, had the opportunity to join David Chard in visiting Lesotho to learn more about local early childhood well-being efforts. Dr. Margaret Lombe, associate professor at the BU School of Social Work also joined the team.They were welcomed by colleagues from the Lesotho-Boston Health Alliance (LeBoHA), a collaborative initiative between the Boston University and the Lesotho Ministry of Health and Social Welfare. LeBoHA aims to strengthen management, policy, planning and clinical capacity in Lesotho by bolstering education and development programs for health professionals.

The team also met with representatives from the Ministries of Education and Social Development to gain understanding about policies and programs impacting early childhood care and health and were able visit childcare centers for infants and preschoolers administered by the Network of Early Childhood Development of Lesotho (NECDOL) to see the early childhood initiatives in action. They also had the opportunity to meet with faculty at the National University of Lesotho and Lesotho College of Education to learn about their research and preparation of professionals in the fields of education, and sociology and social work.

The trip was very successful, and the team is excited about building new partnerships to increase Boston University’s global engagement. Discussions are underway about future collaboration between the Institute for Early Childhood Well-Being and LeBoHA to support interdisciplinary and community-engaged early childhood initiatives in Lesotho.