ALAS is a group of Latin American leaders working to guarantee that all children in the region from age birth to six years old are able to grow and develop to their full potential. The group's objective is to inspire high-quality holistic educational programmes in the area of early childhood development (ECD) that will then generate change in the public policies of Latin American governments. Colombian singer Shakira founded the initiative.

Communication Strategies: 

The organisation makes alliances with other organisations in order to meet its objectives:

  • Early Childhood Centres, Education for Development. The project is part of a strategy comprised of agreements with the public sector. It operates in alliance with the government of the city of Buenos Aires, Argentina, to provide comprehensive attention to vulnerable children from birth to four years old. Through the programme, early childhood centres are promoted to help guarantee that children grow and develop in a healthy manner. ALAS collaborates with monitoring and supervising the work of the centres and also publishes centre openings, progress, and results in all the different forums and environments in which it participates.
  • Cooperation programme benefitting early childhood in Brazil: The initiative is run through an alliance with the Federal Government of Brazil and the Xuxa Meneghel Foundation. The primary objective of the programme is to strengthen early childhood education policy in Brazil. Children from birth to six years old are the priority. Among its actions, the programme consults with participating municipal governments in order to improve quality in daycare centres and preschools. Training focuses on four specific areas: pa{rimeroedagogic methodology quality, human resource selection (hiring), professional training for teachers, and working with the family and community to place children's rights on the public agenda. The alliance has set a goal of reaching 100 institutions by 2015.  
  • Primero lo Primero. (First Things First). This public-private alliance in Colombia is part of the De Cero a Siempre Strategy (Birth to Always), a programme that brings high-quality comprehensive education to children living in vulnerable conditions from birth to five years old. The programme is supported by the ALAS Foundation and other institutions such as the National Education Ministry and the Instituto Colombiano de Bienestar Familiar (ICBF), as well as a commitment from the Mario Santo Domingo Foundation (FMSD), the Pies Descalzos Foundation (BareFoot Foundation), aeioTU - Carulla Foundation, and 30 public and private institutions. 
  • Centros Integrales de Primera Infancia (CIPIs) (Comprehensive Early Childhood Centres - CIPIS) in Quintana Roo (México). The programme is led by the Sistema para el Desarrollo Integral de la Familia (Comprehensive Family Development System - DIF) run by the state government with the objective of increasing access to and the quality of DIF services for children from birth to six years old in the state by building 10 Comprehensive Early Childhood Centres (CIPIS) and  providing training for public school teachers and administrators.
Development Issues: 

Early childhood, education, rights.

Key Points: 

In 2012, the ALAS movement coordinated with the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) to promote the ALAS-IDB Prize, which is centred on Early Childhood Development and recognises innovation, excellence, investigation, and quality in programmes that benefit children under six in vulnerable Latin American and Caribbean communities. Over 700 people and institutions from all over the region responded to the invitation.


This video in Spanish describes the work that ALAS does.

Partner Text: 

City of Buenos Aires, Federal Government of Brazil, the Xuxa Meneghel Foundation, Primero lo Primero, CIPIs


The ALAS Foundation website, January 29 2013.