Press Release

New Partnership to Promote Innovation in Early Childhood Development

Mexico City, November 13th, 2017.- The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) launched the DIT Innovation Fund, an alliance to promote early childhood development in Latin America and the Caribbean. Coordinated and administered by the IDB, the new fund is an alliance between FEMSA Foundation, Open Society Foundations regionally and María Cecilia Souto Vidigal Foundation (FMCSV in Spanish) in Brazil.

Each partner will initially contribute with 1 million USD, hoping to reach more than 10 million USD to support projects in the region over the next three years.

Designed to benefit children from vulnerable communities, the new fund will finance initiatives to improve cognitive, linguistic, motor and social-emotional skills in the first five years of life. A critical element will be the exchange of knowledge, as partners will create and share new evidence on effective solutions for early childhood development.

We are looking for innovative, replicable and scalable initiatives to develop integral solutions to the challenges we face as a society. The DIT Innovation Fund is an opportunity to encourage new ideas and to contribute to early childhood development in the region”, said FEMSA Foundation Director, Mariano Montero.
“We believe that the development of our children is the development of our society. In this effort, we have strong alliances that promote the exchange of ideas and knowledge, as well as the design of new policies and practices in this matter. This fund will allow us to achieve our goal of testing and creating public policies that have an impact in Brazil and in the rest of Latin America and the Caribbean, added President of the María Cecilia Souto Vidigal Foundation, Eduardo de C. Queiroz.

The alliance was announced on November 9th during the Alas-BID Awards ceremony, an event that recognizes the people and organizations working in early childhood development in the region. The DIT Innovation Fund will start by financing projects in Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador and Peru.

The Open Society foundations welcome the opportunity to partner with IDB, FEMSA Foundation and Maria Cecilia Souto Vidigal Foundation in this critical initiative that we believe will give invaluable results and has the potential to transform the lives of some of the most vulnerable children in the region. We believe that many of the innovations taking place in the field of early childhood will be relevant not only regionally, but globally”, said Deputy Director of Open Society Foundations’ Early Childhood Program, Tina Hyder.
“We believe that early childhood development is such an important issue that it requires joint efforts. The future of the region depends on the experiences our children have during their first 5 years of life. We are confident that by working together, we’ll be able to innovate on this issue, scale up effective solutions and create knowledge that improves our future interventions”, BID’s Strategic Alliances Manager, Bernardo Guillamon.
More information about the DIT Innovation Fund at wwww.iadb.org/ECDfund
About FEMSA Foundation
FEMSA Foundation is an organization that aims to generate positive impacts on people and communities through social investment projects for sustainability. FEMSA Foundation focuses on two areas of action: 1) the conservation and sustainable use of water and 2) the improvement of health through nutritional education and the promotion of early childhood development. For more information, visit www.fundacionfemsa.org or follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FundacionFEMSA/
About IDB
The Inter-American Development Banks mission is to improve lives. Founded in 1959, IDB is one of the main sources of long-term financing for the economic, social and institutional development of Latin America and the Caribbean. IBD also conducts research projects and provides policy advice, technical assistance and training to public and private clients throughout the region.
About Open Society Foundations
The Open Society Foundations work to build vibrant and tolerant societies whose governments are accountable and open to the participation of all people. They work in more than 100 countries, with 26 foundations and national and regional offices.
About Maria Cecilia Souto Vidigal Foundation
Founded in 1965, Maria Cecilia Souto Vidigal Foundation works to promote the full development in early childhood (from birth to six years old) in Brazil. Our priorities are: 1. Qualified early childhood education services; 2. Qualified services of attention to the families and focused on parenting. We look for ways to generate, systematize and share knowledge about early childhood development. We mobilize leaders, inform and sensitize society to promote behavioral changes that reflect positively in the attention to the child during the first years of life.
About FEMSA
FEMSA is a leading company participating in the beverage industry with Coca-Cola FEMSA, the largest franchise bottler of Coca-Cola products in the world; and in the beer industry, through its ownership of the second largest equity stake of Heineken, one of the worlds leading brewers with operations in over 70 countries. FEMSA participates in the retail sector with FEMSA Comercio, which operates various small-format chain stores including OXXO; a Fuels Division operating the OXXO GAS service stations chain; and a Health Division that includes pharmacies and related operations. In addition, through FEMSA Strategic Businesses, the company offers logistic services, point-of-sales cooling solutions and plastic solutions for FEMSA’s companies and external customers.

“We believe that early childhood development is such an important issue that it requires joint efforts. The future of the region depends on the experiences our children have during their first 5 years of life. We are confident that by working together, we’ll be able to innovate on this issue, scale up effective solutions and create knowledge that improves our future interventions”, BID’s Strategic Alliances Manager, Bernardo Guillamon.

More information about the DIT Innovation Fund at wwww.iadb.org/ECDfund

About FEMSA Foundation

FEMSA Foundation is an organization that aims to generate positive impacts on people and communities through social investment projects for sustainability. FEMSA Foundation focuses on two areas of action: 1) the conservation and sustainable use of water and 2) the improvement of health through nutritional education and the promotion of early childhood development. For more information, visit www.fundacionfemsa.org or follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FundacionFEMSA/

About IDB

The Inter-American Development Banks mission is to improve lives. Founded in 1959, IDB is one of the main sources of long-term financing for the economic, social and institutional development of Latin America and the Caribbean. IBD also conducts research projects and provides policy advice, technical assistance and training to public and private clients throughout the region.

About Open Society Foundations

The Open Society Foundations work to build vibrant and tolerant societies whose governments are accountable and open to the participation of all people. They work in more than 100 countries, with 26 foundations and national and regional offices.

About Maria Cecilia Souto Vidigal Foundation

Founded in 1965, Maria Cecilia Souto Vidigal Foundation works to promote the full development in early childhood (from birth to six years old) in Brazil. Our priorities are: 1. Qualified early childhood education services; 2. Qualified services of attention to the families and focused on parenting. We look for ways to generate, systematize and share knowledge about early childhood development. We mobilize leaders, inform and sensitize society to promote behavioral changes that reflect positively in the attention to the child during the first years of life.

About FEMSA

FEMSA is a leading company participating in the beverage industry with Coca-Cola FEMSA, the largest franchise bottler of Coca-Cola products in the world; and in the beer industry, through its ownership of the second largest equity stake of Heineken, one of the worlds leading brewers with operations in over 70 countries. FEMSA participates in the retail sector with FEMSA Comercio, which operates various small-format chain stores including OXXO; a Fuels Division operating the OXXO GAS service stations chain; and a Health Division that includes pharmacies and related operations. In addition, through FEMSA Strategic Businesses, the company offers logistic services, point-of-sales cooling solutions and plastic solutions for FEMSA’s companies and external customers.

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