Promoting Respect for Ethnic Diversity in Preschool Children

Impact: Cultural Impact, Societial Impact


The impact of this case study is that most preschool children in Northern Ireland have followed an educational programme promoting respect for ethnic diversity, developed by Early Years in conjunction with the US-based Peace Initiatives Institute and based on research at Queen’s University Belfast (QUB) from 2003 onwards. The Media Initiative for Children (MIFC) has been adopted and embedded within practice by more than 1,200 preschool settings with more than 40,000 children in Northern Ireland and The Republic of Ireland. In Northern Ireland children as young as three years old have been shown to hold sectarian and racist attitudes. As a result of MIFC there have been measurable changes in the attitudes of preschool children in terms of respect for ethnic diversity in Northern Ireland. Nearly every preschool child in Northern Ireland has been exposed to the media messages associated with the programme and broadcast on television. There are early childhood programmes, directly inspired by this work, to promote respect for ethnic diversity being developed in Indonesia, Kenya and Colombia.
Impact statusOngoing
Category of impactCultural Impact, Societial Impact