All of Preparing for Life programmes are based on an understanding of Infant Mental Health. Infant mental health refers to how well a child develops socially and emotionally from birth to age three years. It is an inter-disciplinary field focusing on the capacity of infants to express and regulate their emotions, begin to form relationships, and explore their environment. There is considerable research that tells us that the first three years of life provide the foundation for a child’s social and emotional health and wellbeing. Positive social and emotional development in infancy lays the foundation for children’s social and emotional health and wellbeing, and also impacts children’s cognitive development. Providing infants with predictable and nurturing caregiving environments affords them the opportunity for optimal development across the life course.
Infant Mental Health Network
Preparing for Life facilitates a monthly Infant Mental Health Network. This brings together practitioners from a range of disciplines who are committed to supporting parents and children during the first three years of life. The network provides peer learning and support in order to promote and Infant Mental Health approach