Monday, December 10, 2007

Impact of cash transfer programmes on child nutritional status and some implications

Source: Eldis (

Article: A review of the impact of cash transfer programmes on child nutritional status and some implications for Save the Children UK programmes

*The following are excerpts from the aforementioned article:

Regular and large cash transfers help improve children’s nutrition in Latin America and Africa

Authors: D. Sridharm; A. Duffield
Publisher: Save the Children Fund , 2006
Full text of document

This paper, produced by Save the Children reviews eight cash transfer programmes in Latin America and Africa, and discusses the effectiveness of each in improving the nutritional status of children. It finds that cash transfers to targeted households have the potential to improve children’s diet and nutritional status. The positive impacts exceed those reported from other typical community-based nutrition programmes.

The cash transfer programme in Mexico called PROGRESA was found to be particularly successful. There are several factors contributing towards this success including: a large cash transfer constituting approximately one-third of households income; regular transfers made to women; transparent and objective targeting; and the provision of free healthcare. Cash transfer programmes are less successful if they make up a smaller proportion of household income and beneficiaries are paid less regularly.

The paper concludes that there should be no rules about how cash transfer programmes are designed since everything depends on the context. It sets out several questions that might be useful for programme staff and policy makers to consider when they design such a scheme. These relate to the size of the transfer scheme required and the costs of adequate diet and healthcare, the proportion of households needing the transfer, and ways of making targeting systems transparent and accurate.

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*Note the abovementioned excerpts are direct quotes from the article and thus all credit and references should be afforded to the authors/sources.

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