Washington, September 23, 2013 – A US$10 million grant will scale up a current Cash Transfer Project and benefit 5,000 Palestinian households living in extreme poverty. Cash transfer programs have been key in providing timely emergency assistance to Palestinian families suffering from economic hardships.
The additional grant approved by the World Bank today will target around 5,000 families using a transparent poverty-targeting mechanism that verifies beneficiaries’ eligibility through regular monitoring and recertification. It will also support continuous efforts aimed at reforming the cash transfer program.
“The existing project has become a critical safety net in the Palestinian Territories and is fully integrated in the wider Palestinian Authority’s social assistance system,” said Samira Hillis, World Bank Senior Operations Officer. “Scaling up assistance through the ongoing project will bolster successful interventions, enhance program coverage and reach out to additional households living in extreme poverty.”
The Cash transfer Program, supported by the World Bank, replaced an earlier complex web of social protection initiatives and more than doubled the number of beneficiaries reached from 2010 to 2012. Up to 2013, it reached over 100,000 poor households covering more than half of the poorest quintile and devoting two thirds of its resources to the extremely poor. The Bank also used its technical expertise to coordinate donors’ efforts for a greater collaboration in the distribution and evaluation of benefits.
“The lack of economic opportunities and high unemployment rates remain major problems in the Palestinian Territories,” said Mariam Sherman, World Bank Country Director for the West Bank and Gaza. “This program supports the poorest and most vulnerable Palestinians. The provision of basic safety nets has a significant impact on the lives of recipients by providing income and fostering social inclusion.