The Effect of Raising Children in an Urban Environment versus Agrarian Environment
With the global urban population increasing at a faster rate compared to the general population, they have relentless debates on the media concerning the impact of urbanization on children (Torrey). Studies show that a child’s early environment can have profound effects on their brain development and well-being. It is recommended that children have access to ample space, green and pollution free environments to enhance their early developments since their early life is marked by a lot of play (European Environment Agency, 91). This type of environment is sometimes lacking, especially in the urban-poor environments, but should not form the basis of disqualifying discrediting urban environments to effectively raise children.
The urban environment has a lot to offer children when compared to the agrarian environment. An urban life attracts advantages such as greater prospects to access education, health care and recreation facilities. While agrarian environments may provide a pollution free environment laced with green and adequate spaces, access to education and health facilities can always be a struggle. Schools and health centers are often not in close vicinity and access to them is usually not without stress unlike urban environments where these resources are at one’s doorstep. Important to note is that the quality of these resources in urban areas is much greater compared to their agrarian counterparts and thus children can be guaranteed quality environment and health care.
Urban environments can pose challenges such as insufficient water and sanitation, deficient rubbish disposal, and industrial effluents which can be detrimental to early child development. It should however not be forgotten that the same environment is characterized by superior consumption of food, energy, and robust goods than rural populations (Bartlett, 63), these are important for child development. Therefore, urban environments should be viewed in terms of what they offer rather than what they fail to offer the child and on this basis, raising a child in an urban environment is a better option the agrarian environment.
Bartlett, Sheridan. “Children’s experience of the physical environment in poor urban settlements and the implications for policy, planning and practice.” Environment and Urbanization (1999): 63-74. Online.
European Environment Agency. “State and Outlook 2010: Synthesis/ Chapter 5: environment, health and quality of life.” 2010. European Environment Agency. http://www.eea.europa.eu/soer/synthesis/synthesis/chapter5.xhtml. 07 October 2014.
Torrey, Barbara Boyle. “Urbanization: An Environmental Force to Be Reckoned With.” 2014. Population Reference Bureau. http://www.prb.org/Publications/Articles/2004/UrbanizationAnEnvironmentalForcetoBeReckonedWith.aspx. 07 October 2014.