School Feeding Program: Ghana Receives US$150M From The World Bank

The Government of Ghana has received US$150million in additional financing from the International Development Association (IDA) for the Ghana Productive Safety Net Project 2 (GPSNP 2).

The World Bank said in a statement that it released in Washington that the money will help the poor get access to productive income-generating opportunities and expand and improve social safety nets.

Additionally, it will provide assistance to the Ghana School Feeding Programme (GSFP), the largest social assistance program in the nation that reaches 3.6 million children in public kindergartens and primary schools in all 261 municipal, metropolitan, and district assemblies.

In order to safeguard the poor and vulnerable during this period of fiscal distress, the government of Ghana has committed to preserving and increasing social spending as part of its program with the IMF.

The GPSNP 2-supported social safety net programs in Ghana are crucial to preserving the poor, enhancing food security, and expanding productivity and human capital. However, the release of payments for government-funded social protection programs has been largely postponed due to recent financial difficulties.

According to Pierre Laporte, the World Bank’s Country Director for Ghana, Liberia, and Sierra Leone,

“The World Bank is happy to support this project with additional financing in these times of macroeconomic challenges, to enable it meet its commitments on social spending and maintain critical social assistance programmes while the country works toward fiscal recovery”

Mr. Laporte explained that the support is also in line with Ghana’s overall development plan, which is outlined in the Coordinated Programme of Economic and Social Development Policies (2017–2024), as well as the government’s plan for Ghana’s social protection sector, which includes providing poor people with productive, gainful employment.

The project builds on its predecessor and previous World Bank financed projects (since 2010), supporting the government of Ghana to strengthen its social protection system and increase transparency and efficiency to maximise programme impact.

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The GPSNP will also provide technical assistance to identify potential sources of sustainable social protection financing.

It will assist government to safeguard and improve regularity of payments within the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) and Ghana School Feeding Programme, and provide employment opportunities to about 32,000 caterers and cooks in addition to providing a daily meal for school-going children.

The GPSNP 2 additional financing also seeks to increase funding under the LEAP to support government in meeting its budget commitments for an increase in transfer value to the targetted 350,000 beneficiaries, given its major erosion due to inflation in the past year.

It will scale up the Productive Inclusion Intervention by providing sustainable livelihoods to 60,000 beneficiaries (up from 25,000 currently), and expanding access to the Labour-Intensive Public Works short-term employment programme to 90,000 beneficiaries (up from 60,000 currently).

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