Veva (left) has worked as a childminder for 16 years, and since 2009 has been receiving training and …

AKDN / Lucas Cuervo Moura

Through a public-private partnership with the Ministry of Labour and Social Solidarity, and in partnership …

AKDN / Lucas Cuervo Moura

The Olivais Centre in Greater Lisbon is a reference point for quality early childhood development services …

AKDN / Lucas Cuervo Moura

The Olivais Centre in Greater Lisbon is a reference point for quality Early Childhood Development services …

AKDN / Lucas Cuervo Moura

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Portugal | Early Childhood Development


AKF’s ECD and education programmes have reached 95,000 people

Offering a more family-like environment, the childminders in Portugal participate in training provided by AKF’s Early Childhood Development staff allowing them to improve their skills in caring for young children. 

AKDN / Lucas Cuervo Moura

Parental Support and Caregivers

The Training Programme for Childminders and other Caregivers of Young Children provides a holistic view of education and care in childhood development. It involves a training and research programme on participatory pedagogies in family daycare, through supervision / follow-up and training.

Gerar.Te is a unique initiative in Portugal. It targets pregnant women and couples awaiting the birth of a baby, and parents of newborns. It helps with the transition to parenthood, ensuring a good start in life and development opportunities based on family relationships.

Literacy Programmes

The Literacy Promotion Integrated Program (PIPL) is the first Social Impact Bond on education in Portugal. The programme promotes professional development of early childhood and primary school teachers, informing their practice with research on literacy teaching.

It is an action-research programme aiming to improve preschool and first grade children’s reading and writing competencies to contribute to school success. The Ministry of Education is embedding the results and learning into public policy. PIPL has reached 92 teachers and 1,569 students and displayed a 58 percent increase in reading competencies of sample children (in 2020), against a 30 percent target.

The informal family literacy programme Conto Contigo is short and playful. It is designed for public and school libraries, CSOs or other organisations working with families. Its objective is to foster parental skills to support the development of literacy in preschool children (five to six years). It predominantly targets families with migratory or ethnic backgrounds, or those at risk of economic, social, or cultural exclusion. It is based on scientifically grounded evidence showing that children who benefit from family environments rich in literacy practices and habits develop literacy skills and motivation to learn, read and write. The programme has reached 386 professionals from school and municipal libraries and 45 public and school libraries.

Strengthening Professionals, Institutions and Services

AKF has contributed to the continuous training and education of ECD professionals through a Masters course at the Portuguese Catholic University in Lisbon from 2013 to 2016, which reached 27 professionals; as well as specialised training courses in Oporto from 2016 to 2019, which reached 51 professionals. A second edition of the postgraduate course in Integrated Management of Learning in Pre-school and Primary School Education was launched in Oporto in 2021. The AKF office in Lisbon has also undertaken interventions in the early years to improve the quality of life for immigrant communities in Norway and Germany.