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Imagine a young child with a vibrant love of play and learning. A child who is curious and asks questions about the world around her. A child who loves listening to stories. Imagine a child who shows self-control and can wait her turn. A child who is kind and cares for others. Imagine an expressive, creative, confident child who has mastered some of the social, emotional, cognitive and physical skills that give her the power to succeed in life.This is the kind of child SmartStart aims to develop. We believe every child in South Africa deserves the opportunity to reach their potential in this way.We also understand the critical role played by quality early learning in the first 5 years of a child’s life. This is what helps to create a happy, well-adjusted child who will be ready for primary school. We are driven by the knowledge that, with even a small amount of good stimulation, children are building the foundation they need to thrive at school.There are currently one million children aged 3-5 years who do not have access to early learning programmes. This is the challenge that we are turning into an opportunity, so that children across South Africa – from an early age – have a better chance of success.SmartStart was founded in May 2015 to ensure that access to high quality early stimulation becomes a reality. We are starting with the poorest 40% of children aged 3 and 4 years old.We provide an effective and affordable solution that enables unemployed women and men to run their own SmartStart programmes, and that empowers parents and communities to seek out and support these quality programmes.We are also resourceful, collaborative and ambitious. This is what we seek from the women and men who we train and license, and from all the players in our network model.