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[Editorial] Ending institutionalisation of children

Childhood is a time when the seeds of a person’s future health and wellbeing are sown. Ideally, it happens within a family setting that provides individualised care in a loving, safe, enriching, and happy environment. Sadly, more than 8 million vulnerable children worldwide do not have access to such care and grow up in large institutions or orphanages. Such environments share conditions that can be detrimental to children, such as depersonalisation—through lack of personal possessions, care relationships, or symbols of individuality—strict routines, group treatment, and isolation from wider society.