War and Children

War and Children

War and Children

War and Children

Excerpt

Work in War Nurseries is based on the idea that the care and education of young children should not take second place in wartime and should not be reduced to wartime level. Adults can live under emergency conditions and, if necessary, on emergency rations. But the situation in the decisive years of bodily and mental development is entirely different. It has already been generally recognised, and provision has been made accordingly, that the lack of essential foods, vitamins, etc., in early childhood will cause lasting bodily malformation in later years, even if harmful consequences are not immediately apparent. It is not generally recognised that the same is true for the mental development of the child. Whenever certain essential needs are not fulfilled, lasting psychological malformations will be the consequence. These essential elements are: the need for personal attachment, for emotional stability, and for permanency of educational influence.

War conditions, through the inevitable breaking-up of family life, deprive children of the natural background for their emotional and mental development. The present generation . . .

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