A successful strategy to reduce poverty in developing nations has been the use of conditional cash transfer (CCT) programs.
CCTs attempt to reduce poverty while also changing behavior and building human capital by providing families with cash in exchange for certain requirements, such as enrolling their children in school.
These incentives have been employed effectively to boost school enrollment and attendance, decrease child labor, and encourage the use of preventive health services.
In Honduras, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has been the main financial and technical partner of a CCT known as Bono Vida Mejor (formerly Bono 10,000).
Since its inception in 2010, Bono Vida Mejor has benefited 350,000 households. It has contributed to reducing the poverty rate in Honduras and moderately improved school attendance and the rate of health clinic visits for children under 3. Read more…
Have you ever tried to learn to speak a foreign language? Did it make you nervous the first time you had to speak it? Imagine having to teach it.
English is the language of commerce, diplomacy, computers, and half of the internet. Unfortunately in Latin America, few students graduate from school with a command of the English language, limiting their opportunities to participate in a globalized economy.
Some of these countries are making changes to improve English education. Mexico recently reformed public schools, introducing English in preschool and primary education and increasing study time in English by an additional 50% in secondary education. Read more…
Greater self-esteem and opportunities can reduce the risk of teenage pregnancy. That is a lesson of a job training program advanced by the Youth and Employment Program in the Dominican Republic. The country has the highest rate of teenage pregnancy in Latin America and the Caribbean, with 104 births per 1,000 people between the ages of 15 and 19, almost equal to that of the Sub-Saharan Africa (110 per 1000 inhabitants).
The women who participated in the job training program reduced their chances of becoming pregnant by 20 percent. That is a significant reduction, bringing the rate more in line with the median for the region (74 per 1000 inhabitants). Read more…
by Erin Bautista and Tracy Betts.
Each year, international development institutions channel billions of dollars into development projects around the world. Is the money well spent? Does it produce the desired results?
While many development providers publish project details through their own websites and reports, finding consolidated information on which projects are active in a given country, what they are achieving, and where the gaps are can be a daunting task.
That’s why transparency in development cooperation has come to mean a lot more than simply making information public, but also making it easily accessible and usable. Read more…
The risk of falling into poverty increases substantially with age, not only because the ability to perform a job and ensure an income falls, but also because expenses mount as health deteriorates and disabilities increase.
Pension policies don’t just alleviate poverty; they also provide security for the elderly who are in danger of falling into poverty. However, pension systems in developing countries have a limited potential, as their coverage level is low. Such is the case of El Salvador, where only 20 percent of the elderly population is covered by the pension system. Read more…