Healthy Development of Children

When disaster—natural or manmade—strikes, the most affecting images are those of children. So much of our collective future depends on the wellbeing of these children around the world. While children born of healthy mothers who get a good start and maintain good health throughout their lives will very likely live into the 22nd century, the Mailman School believes that children must do more than just survive: they must thrive.

Children who do not receive nurturing care, a safe environment, or sufficient nutrition will fail to reach their developmental potential. Unhealthy behaviors and exposures to toxins initiate future chronic diseases, hindering their ability to earn a living and become productive members of society. 

But these outcomes are preventable. The School proposes to unify a wealth of scientific and solution related resources into the Child Health Initiative for Learning and Development, or CHILD, which will design and implement a host of effective methods for comprehensive healthy development for all children. 

CHILD will serve as an interdisciplinary hub for the Mailman School and the National Center for Children in Poverty, Teachers College, and Columbia’s department of Pediatrics and School of Social Work. Using the latest brain science, the center will develop, evaluate, and bring to scale interventions that improve the delivery of health to populations of children in New York City and around the world. Through community-based projects, CHILD will train health professionals at all levels and help persuade decision-makers that investing in early childhood development is a cornerstone of economic prosperity and the health of nations.

Learn More

For more information about supporting CHILD, including opportunities to endow the initiative and its associated professorships, fellowships, and scholarships, please contact:

Debbie Rosenberg Bush

Interim Senior Director of Institutional Advancement

Director of Institutional Partnerships


drb2163 [at]