The strategy for improving early years and maternity services in west Wales has been launched.

Initiated by Ceredigion, Pembrokeshire and Carmarthenshire county councils and Hywel Dda University Health Board, the Maternity and Early Years Strategy 2022-26 emphasises the pressing need for integrated child services.

The Strategy's key objectives focus on the significance of early years and maternity services for every child, obtained through partnerships between local authorities, non-profit partners, and health organisations.

The launch gathered inspirational speakers who shared insights on maternity and early years services as well as how West Wales families can benefit from them.

Dr Iram Siraj OBE, a representative from the University of Oxford, stressed the importance of early childhood development.

She recognised the financial challenges many families face in securing affordable childcare.

She also spoke about how significant stakeholder involvement, multi-agency collaboration, and early identification of at-risk children are important to the cause.

Claire Law, director at the Centre for Early Child Development, pointed out the merit of a locally based approach to improve family outcomes.

Additionally, Amy McNaughton, public health consultant for the First 1000 Days programme in Wales, drew attention to the vital role of public health strategies in assisting parents and families.

The launch event showcased numerous professionals and families who have reaped rewards from the integrated model of providing maternity and early years services.

Aligned with the research presented by the guest speakers, such as the effects of poverty on early childhood development and the production of inclusive policy, the Maternity and Early Years Strategy upholds similar priorities.

This preliminary journey of the Strategy predicts a favourable influence on future generations.

For more information, the Maternity and Early Years Strategy for West Wales is accessible online.