• “The children are more settled, happier, and in some cases less anxious.”

Early Childhood Programme

The KidsCan Early Childhood Programme is designed to help our most vulnerable kids get a great start to their education.


Why under 5s?  

University of Waikato research indicated that parents are less likely to send their child to an Early Childhood Centre if they have no food for their lunchbox, no raincoat if it’s wet, or if they have health issues. The aim of this programme is to remove those barriers which stop a child attending an Early Childhood Centre. 

The early years are a child’s most formative, where lifelong learning patterns are set. Research shows that children who regularly attend a quality early childhood centre do better at school. It’s where crucial social skills - play, friendship, sharing, routines - are developed. But if a child is hungry, their brain operates purely in survival mode, and if they miss out on this opportunity their school readiness is compromised. 


How it works

Last year, KidsCan launched a research programme in 25 early childhood centres in Northland, Auckland and Hawke’s Bay, supporting over 900 children with the basics to fuel their learning.  


What we're delivering

  • We’re providing them with five fresh meals a week.
  • The menu is designed by Chef Anthony Hoy Fong and endorsed by the Heart Foundation.
  • Fresh, nutritious food is delivered weekly by Countdown and Subway® and staples from KidsCan including EasiYo.
  • Children also receive a warm raincoat, a pair of shoes and two pairs of socks.
  • Head lice treatment to tackle the problem.


Our Progress So Far

We have partnered with the University of Waikato, who are evaluating the impact of our Programme on a child’s participation, wellbeing, health, education and school readiness. This research is running until September 2020.   


We need your help!

With your support, KidsCan is aiming to announce the expansion of this programme in late 2019. Join us in giving Kiwi kids an equal chance. Donate now.


For Early Childhood Centres

Does your centre need help? Register your interest in joining our Early Childhood Programme below.