There is nothing quite like Halloween for young children. There are of course the costumes and the candy, the jack-o-lanterns and trick and treating. But it’s one of the celebrations that shape attitudes – either positive or negative – toward family, neighbors, and environment which are crucial in the cognitive and social development of our youngest children.

In "Data Book 2013: The State of Children in Memphis & Shelby County," The Urban Child Institute explores social and economic conditions affecting optimal brain development for babies ages zero to three, and subsequently outlines critical areas that need improvement. Research findings show that the environment and community in which a child is born and raised contributes greatly to her future well being, while the health and well-being of its children determines a community's future.

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