Value for money and return on investment
Investing in early years services improves outcomes for babies and children including:
- early cognitive and non-cognitive development
- social development
- children’s readiness for school
- later educational outcomes
- future health
HENRY’s focus on the earliest years of life and the holistic, broad-based nature of the HENRY approach and our family support services mean that commissioning HENRY offers value for money and a clear return on investment.
Commissioning HENRY not only helps prevent child obesity before it is too late (see below), but also supports the development of thriving, emotionally healthy children at age 5 who are ready to learn.
Nobel prize-winning economist Professor James Heckman calculated the economic benefits of social interventions provided at different ages – he found that investment in the early years gives a far greater return to society than later interventions, estimating that every $1 spent on early years repays $7 eight years later.
Other economists have compared the low costs of early years interventions to the very high costs to society of unemployment and looked-after children. HENRY often helps parents return to work or education, and has helped prevent children being taken into care.
- Poor diet is the behavioural risk factor with the single-highest impact on the NHS budget (Scarborough, 2011)
- The long term cost of child obesity is considerable – excess weight is estimated to cost the NHS £5bn per year. The Greater London Authority Intelligence Unit estimated an obese child in London is likely to cost around £31 a year in direct costs, rising to £611 a year if they continue to be obese in adulthood
- Other evidence suggests that for every £1 invested in parenting skills and support, £8 is saved over 25 years (Knapp, 2011)
- Just 1 in 20 children who are obese at age 5 will return to a healthy weight by age 11 (Public Health England) – preventing children from becoming obese by age 5 is the only realistic way of reducing the numbers of children who are obese in later life
- The All Party Parliamentary Group for Conception to Age Two recommends that tackling problems associated with early life should be a priority for politicians and health and social care professionals, stating that ‘a failure to act early comes at great cost, not only to individuals but to society as a whole’
- Parents who join a HENRY programme are equipped with the skills to help themselves find solutions to their problems – they are therefore less likely to need wider support, which reduces pressure and demand on other local services
HENRY practitioner training can be commissioned for £125 per participant per day. Our Healthy Families programme can be delivered locally for a total cost of £320 per family. Contact us to find out more.
Early childhood is a unique opportunity to get children off to a great start
Supporting parents to provide a healthy start in life for their children
Our innovative and flexible range of family support services