World Bank Approves US$10M for ‘Social Safety’

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The World Bank Board of Executive Directors has approved a new financing agreement of US$10 million International Development Association (IDA) credit agreement to provide income support to Liberians, particularly extremely poor and food insecure households in the country.

The agreement, which was approved last Tuesday, May 3, will establish key building blocks of a basic national safety net delivery system of Liberia and Liberia Social Safety Nets Project (LSSNP).

It will directly benefit 10,000 extremely poor and insecure households in four of Liberia’s most food insecure counties including Bomi, Maryland, Grand Kru and River Gee.

Also, the LSSNP will indirectly benefit all households that will be captured in the Social Registry, who would be potential beneficiaries of other safety net programs.

World Bank Liberia Country Manager Inguna Dobraja said, “The Social Safety Nets project focuses on delivering cash transfers to the poorest households in the country by providing accompanying measures to support their food security.”

Madam Dobraja said the project places emphasis on addressing vulnerability and reducing poverty in the targeted project areas and will carry out cash transfer, implement measures that will promote growth, quick and high yielding nutritious food through home gardening.

Additionally, the project will also provide support for increasing awareness on improved nutrition among targeted households as a means of reducing vulnerability.

She said that Liberia has a high degree of malnutrition among children and the lack of dietary diversity in the most food insecure and chronically poor households.

These accompanying measures will encourage beneficiary households to improve consumption and invest in the human development of their families, particularly young children, as well as pregnant women and lactating mothers, the World Bank Liberia Country manager said.

The LSSNP, according to her, will provide support for further developing Liberia’s long-term systems building in the larger social protection sector.

It will contribute to increased efficiency and accountability in the delivery of social services through the creation of a national social registry that seeks to collect information on all poor households in Liberia.

“The LSSNP marks a significant step forward in the support to long-term recovery and resilience building for communities affected by shocks in Liberia,” said Suleiman Namara, Task Team Leader.

He said the systems developed under this project will help make social protection interventions better targeted, more accessible, as well as strengthen coordination of affordable service delivery in the country.

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