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SMART is our first program aimed at toddlers. It is licensed by the Mothers Matter Centre and open for all Canadian organizations.


Supporting Mothers and Raising Toddlers (SMART) is a play-based learning program for mothers of children aged 18 to 36 months. It focuses on deepening parent-child bonds, fostering healthy early childhood development, increasing connections to community resources, and strengthening social networks.

It is a home visitation program that, in the context of the ‘new normal,’ can be delivered virtually. SMART is a 30-week program administered over a year and includes 78 structured, engaging and easy to follow activities (click here to watch our SMART video). The program activities stimulate toddlers’ imaginations, encouraging them to learn and bond with their family.


Who is SMART For?

Everyone. The program is open for all Canadian organizations. It is licensed in Canada by the Mothers Matter Centre (MMC).

The SMART pilot had great success with refugee, newcomer, and Indigenous communities. We have been working to support vulnerable, marginalized and isolated mothers for 20 years in Canada and we believe that empowering mothers is one of the best ways to achieve long term sustainable results for children’s learning and development.

It includes:

  • An easy-to-follow manual to guide project staff in running the program effectively

  • 78 activity cards (in English and French) accompanied by high-quality toys and books supporting the activities

  • Training and technical support for rolling out SMART to interested partners

SMART is an adaptation of Opstapje, a play-based learning initiative created in Germany by IMPULS, for which the MMC has acquired the license and adapted for use in Canada.

Expected outcomes of SMART

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  • Facilitating and strengthening the bond between mother and child through engagement in playbased learning activities.

  • Improving confidence of mother and child through expressing themselves and interacting with each other following the SMART curriculum.

  • Supporting holistic child development for improved school-readiness of children

  • Encouraging mothers to engage and network with other mothers, supported by a peer-to-peer approach and joint discussions in group meetings.

Outcomes for Families

  • The mother-child bond is strengthened, helping both mother and child feel more at home in Canada.

  • Mothers and children have increased confidence in expressing themselves, interacting with each other and with other household and community members.

  • Children are better prepared for school and for life.

  • Mothers feel more connected as a result of networking, formation of support groups, and interaction within communities and with other mothers in the program.

What does SMART Cost?

Site License Fee
$3,000 year

Training for facilitators
Site support
Site monitoring & performance management

Parent-Child Material
$250 family

6 books
20 toys
78 activity cards

To learn more about the program and how you can help, please contact

Yusra Qadir
Vice-President Innovations, Advocacy and Multicultural HIPPY


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