2.8 Creating the necessary physical environments for children to thrive
Children are entitled to grow up to reach their optimum development. Adults, therefore, have a responsibility to create the necessary environments to enable this to happen. This involves not only parents, but also professionals such as teachers and health workers, local communities, and governments. But what does this look like?
Without access to basic standards of physical care and provision – such as food, shelter, clothing, health care, and clean environments – children’s development will suffer. Many physical and intellectual disabilities are linked with material factors such as poor diet, environmental pollution, and exposure to risk of accidents, and are made worse by inadequate access to health care. For example, iodine deficiency in pregnant women can lead to severe intellectual disabilities in children. Pre-natal and post-natal health care as well as health care for children in general is important for their development.