Global WACh

March 3, 2023

Researchers convene in Nairobi, Kenya on future childhood development research

Group photo of several investigators from Kenyatta National Hospital, University of Nairobi, and University of Washington.

A two-day convening in January in Nairobi, Kenya brought together over 30 investigators from a variety of Kenyatta National Hospital, University of Nairobi, and University of Washington studies that include components of assessing childhood neurodevelopment and mental health. This meeting provided a forum to understand how to leverage the recently awarded Impact of Microbiome, Immune Activation and Drug on Neurodevelopment (MIND) Program for ongoing and future childhood development research. Over the course of the meeting, attendees discussed and prioritized the activities for a new MIND Center of Excellence (CoE) that builds off the program. To briefly summarize, the activities include:

  • Focusing training efforts on incubating local expertise in policy, clinical care, and research
  • Developing or strengthening external collaborations with the Kenya Ministry of Health, Ministry of Gender, Ministry of Education, and National Council of Children’s Services
  • Addressing the uptake of research findings into policymaking
  • Creating resources to support dissemination of results
  • Identifying research areas to guide addressing research questions: neurodevelopment, mental health, role of caregiver, implementation science, and cross-MIND projects

We look forward to sharing future updates as the program progresses.