Rainer Blank, MD
Rainer Blank, MD
It is a great honour and pleasure to announce the 4th Triennial Meeting of the International Allied Academies of Childhood (IAACD) and the 37th Annual Meeting of the European Academy Of Childhood Disability (EACD) in the beautiful city of Heidelberg, Germany, from June 24th to 28th, 2025.
Following three world congresses in Stockholm/Sweden 2016, Anaheim/USA 2019 and Melbourne/Australia 2022, the 4th IAACD triennial meeting is coming back to Europe, and will be held together with the EACD annual meeting under the motto “Developing networks – networks for development”. Leading researchers and clinicians will discuss the many aspects of childhood disability and developmental disorders, presenting their cutting-edge research. Parent representatives and persons with lived experiences will get a voice, and will engage in a lively exchange with scientists, therapists, and stakeholders at large. The 2025 meeting will be the first hybrid IAACD meeting, allowing participants from across the world to meet and to communicate both on-site and virtually. This conference will provide a wonderful opportunity to obtain an international perspective of childhood disability and developmental disorders. The planning and scientific committees are more diverse than ever before, representing researchers and clinicians from 21 countries and 17 specialties. Together, they will organize a comprehensive program, showcasing the most recent research, evidence-based practice recommendations, and multiple networking opportunities.
The meeting will also provide an international platform for parent representatives and persons with lived experiences. The year 2025 marks the 80th anniversary of the end of World War II and the Nazi regime, which systematically discriminated against and murdered innumerable individuals because of their disabilities. Therefore, 2025 also stands for 80 years of respect, inclusion and integration of children with lived experiences and their families, as reflected in the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Today, in Germany, comprehensive multidisciplinary services are provided for children with disabilities and developmental disorders incl. their parents in approx. 160 Social Paediatric Centres as well as several specialized hospitals, numerous institutions of early intervention and special education. An example, the Child Centre Maulbronn, will be open to visit within the pre-congress “Science, Practice and Culture” in combination with a cultural highlight, a visit to the UNESCO Heritage site, the Maulbronn Monastery Complex.
Heidelberg is an international city of research and science, famous for its old university, founded in 1386, home of many world-famous scientists and Nobel laureates. It is also a popular travel destination, well-known for its romantic old town and castle, unparalleled choice of culture and entertainment, and wonderful cuisine. People from all over the world meet in Heidelberg, contributing to a melting pot of different cultures and ideas, enjoying the vibrant city, its cultural highlights, and the historical background of a region with 5 UNESCO Heritage sites.
Come and see yourself!
We look forward to welcoming you in Heidelberg in 2025!
Christian Schaaf, MD
Every child deserves to grow and develop with the support of family and a network that provides them with opportunity to express their unique contribution to their community. For the child with a disability the network that supports them and their family may be critical to support their path of development. Globally, many children with disabilities have limited or no access to the expertise required to support their development; despite a global focus on the importance of early child development, children with disabilities often continues to be left behind.
Recognizing the importance of professional societies, and appreciating the global gap in access to this expertise, the three Founding Academies agreed to establish an alliance of developmental disability associations.
The European Academy of Childhood Disability (EACD) is founded in 1989, and is an international not-for-profit association for anyone with a clinical and/or scientific interest in childhood-onset disabilities in Europe. The mission of the EACD is to promote research and education for the benefit of people with childhood-onset disabilities throughout Europe and beyond.
Commitment to the mission of the EACD can be done as individual by becoming a member, as has been done already by many individuals from across Europe, working in areas including but not limited to (neuro)pediatrics, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, physical medicine and rehabilitation, speech and language therapy, orthopedic surgery, psychiatry, nursing, social-work, and special education.