Lesotho

  • 2,2 million people

  • 66 % lives in rural áreas

  • National Poverty 49,7 %

  • Urban Poverty 28,5 %

  • Rural Poverty 60,7 %

* World Bank Data for 2017

 

Child Grants Programme (CGP)

N

Coverage

National

N

Beginning of the program

2009

N

Target population

Poor and vulnerable households with children aged 0-18 years

N

Institution in charge

Ministry of Social Development (MoSD)
N

Components

  • Cash transfers.
  • Children’s needs messages.
N

Objective

The program’s main objective is to improve the living conditions of orphans and vulnerable children to decrease malnutrition, improve their health, and increase school retention.

Sustainable Poverty Reduction through Government Service Support (SPRINGS)

N

Coverage

5 Community councils based on their participation in the CGP.

N

Beginning of the program

2016 (Second phase of the intervention)

N

Target population

Any community member living in five Community Councils, purposefully selected based on their participation in the CGP

N

Institution in charge

Catholic Relief Services (CRS)
N

Components

  • Support to create and provide financial education to community-based savings and loan groups.
  • Formation of market clubs to promote market engagement in support of income generation.
  • Homestead gardening through keyhole gardens and vegetable seeds distribution.
  • Improving nutritional practices through community-led complementary feeding sessions.
N

Objetive

SPRINGS seeks to reduce the vulnerability and increase the resilience in the Community Councils where the MoSD provided CGP transfers, increasing their income and improving poor households’ living conditions.

Complementarities between social protection and rural livelihood interventions can generate synergies by strategically addressing constraints faced by poor rural households. These constraints cannot be fully addressed by either agricultural or social protection operating alone. The complementarities can also contribute to increasing the resilience of households in the face of external shocks, such as the one we are currently facing as a result of COVID-19.

Lesotho’s CGP and SPRINGS programmes set in motion mechanisms that enhanced the income generation capacity of the poor, addressing financial, technical, and knowledge constraints. The combination of a social protection and a livelihood programme reflects the adoption of an economic inclusion approach that provides economic opportunities to the ultra-poor.

Combining the two programmes had a number of positive impacts across four key dimensions: household income and resilience, financial education, income-generating skills, and nutrition. In addition, the combination of the two programmes stimulated local demand and production, which had an income multiplier effect in the local economy

Technical capacity challenges, inadequate financial and human resources in the Ministry of Social Development (MoSD), high staff turnover across all Ministries, and weak inter-sectoral coordination are key obstacles to implementing complementary programmes such as CGP and SPRINGS.

Results

Impact Evaluation

  • Household welfare and resilience: The combination of CGP and SPRINGS resulted in a 12 percent reduction in the poverty gap relative to the comparison group.
  • Financial inclusion and risk management: Significant increase in the share of households saving and borrowing money.
  • Income-generating skills: Strong increase in income from sales of fruits and vegetables in the group of households participating in both programmes.
  • Nutrition: Strong improvements in anthropometric measures, especially a reduction in moderate and severe wasting for the households in the combined CGP and SPRINGS group.
  • Multiplier effects: The CGP stimulates local demand, which in turn stimulates production and has an income multiplier effect in the local economy.

Institutional Analysis

  • For the implementation of SPRINGS, the Ministry of Social Development (MoSD) and the NGO Catholic Relief Services collaborated in the design and planning stages. Still, the relationship was characterized by regular reporting only during the implementation phase.
  • The collaboration was intense at the local level (Community Council and Village levels) but weak at the District and Central levels.
  • The MoSD is relatively constrained compared to other Ministries in its ability to secure financial and human resources. Both the MoSD and the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security(MAFS) recognize that the mobilization of each Ministry’s strength and expertise would contribute immensely to the improvement of programmes that link social protection with agriculture.

 

 

 

Entities

Ministry of Social Development (MoSD):

The main function of MOSD is to lead and facilitate the provision of sustainable social development services that are universally accessible to all groups in Lesotho in collaboration with other key actors.

Catholic Relief Services

Catholic Relief Services is an international humanitarian agency founded in 1943 by the United States Catholic Community. Based in Baltimore, Maryland, CRS works globally, with offices in more than 100 countries. Its mission is to assist the poor and disadvantaged, alleviate human suffering, promote the development of humanity, and foment charity and justice globally.

Evaluation Methodologies

Impact Evaluation

Methodology: Propensity Score Matching (PSM) + qualitative analysis.

Objective: A non-experimental impact evaluation was conducted to evaluate the combined impacts of SGP and SPRINGS.

This evaluation has three comparison groups (arms):

  1. Households that received both SGP and SPRINGS
  2. Households that receive CGP but not SPRINGS
  3. Households that did not receive CGP or SPRINGS, which constitutes the pure comparison group.

This study’s design allowed to evaluate the independent impacts of CGP and the joint impacts of CGP and SPRINGS in relation to the comparison group. This study was complemented with a general equilibrium impact evaluation model called Local Economy Wide Impact Evaluation (LEWIE) to capture the indirect effects of the program on the local economy.

Also, for the qualitative component of the evaluation, focal groups, interviews with key actors in the project, and case studies were conducted.

Institution in charge: FAO-Rome with local officials and consultants.

Tools:

Qualitative:

  • Focal group discussions
  • Interviews with key actors
  • In-depth case studies of the participants

Quantitative:

  • Households surveys:
    • The data gathering was conducted between November 2017 and January 2018.
    • A total of 1,550 household surveys were conducted:

Institutional Analysis

The institutional analysis of CGP and SPRINGS aimed to evaluate the existence of coordination or articulation mechanisms and whether those mechanisms were planned and implemented to later determine if these mechanisms were effective in achieving synergies.

The institutional analysis considers three main dimensions:

  1. Policy and programs
  2. Enabling Environment
  3. Program performance

The first two dimensions require a description of the central policies and programs in the social and agricultural sectors, with their respective objectives and strategic priorities. This task comes with an evaluation of the existing coherence between the agricultural and social sectors. The third dimension, which is specific to the program, represents the grater part of the institutional analysis. It focuses on the key processes in the CGP and SPRINGS programs to identify what worked and what did not, unused articulation opportunities, which processes were failing, and what tools and mechanisms could be better used. 

Institution in charge: FAO-Rome with local officials and consultants.

Tools:

Qualitative:

  • Revision of key documents:
    • Social protection policy
    • Past revisions and evaluation reports of both programs.
    • Other key documents of the program
  • Interviews and semi-structured debates in the villages, with ministry personnel, development partners, donor agents, implementing partners, local officials, and former CGP and SPRINGS beneficiaries.

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Universidad de los Andes | Vigilada Mineducación. Reconocimiento Personería Jurídica resolución 28 del 23 de febrero de febrero de 1949 Minjusticia