KidSTART evaluation: Giving children from vulnerable families a stronger start in life

Asian toddler taking small steps and holding on to mother's hand for support

Launched in April 2016, KidSTART is a pilot initiative that seeks to improve vulnerable children's futures by empowering their families in building nurturing relationships, in caring for their health and social wellbeing in the early years. 

CEI was commissioned to carry out a robust and comprehensive outcome evaluation for KidSTART, focusing on families’ outcomes, the initiative’s implementation and improving the design and delivery of its three support programs. CEI and our partners work to measure the initiative's benefits for children and families and consider the financial viability of expanding the initiative to benefit more children nationwide. This mixed methods evaluation includes a randomised controlled trial and a cost benefit analysis. It is being conducted in collaboration with Monash University and is the first evaluation of its kind in Singapore. 

While Singapore has a universal framework for basic early childhood services, a more coordinated approach is needed for young children from vulnerable and low-income families to access these services.

KidSTART equips parents with health, education, and child development resources. A strong body of evidence tells us that when parents have the right information and tools, their children are more likely to be healthier, meet development milestones, and be better prepared for school transitions. KidSTART builds a support network for children in their homes, schools and communities. It does this through three support programs: home visitation, KidSTART playgroups and child enabling support within preschools.