GOVERNMENT has approved increased payment of the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) with effect from next week, Nana Oye Lithur the Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, has announced.
According to her, over GH¢8 million would be disbursed to 150,000 households from next Monday in the 38th cycle LEAP payment.
She said one member household preciously receiving GH¢48, would now receive GH¢64, a two-member households which received GH¢60 would now take GH¢76 while three member household would now get GH¢88 instead of GH¢72 with a four or more member households will now be paid GH¢106 instead of GH¢72.
Mrs. Lithur announced the new package at a press conference in Accra yesterday.
She said, Ghana, in 2008, launched a flagship social protection intervention, LEAP, currently being administered by the Ministry and aimed at providing a safety net for the poorest and most marginalised groups in the society.
She said the Ministry, had as at June, this year, made 37 payment cycles.
“A total of about 90,000 beneficiary households in 144 districts were paid their social cash grants in June this year” she said and added that the Ministry was on track to reaching 200,000 beneficiary households mark by December, this year.
She said 50,000 new beneficiaries were being added from 184 districts with effect from next payment.
Mrs Lithur said that the the Ministry had launched LEAP 1000, an aspect of the LEAP programme, targeted at pregnant women and children, less than two years old.
She said the initiative was to deal with malnutrition and eventually prevent stunted growth.
The minister said 6,006 beneficiaries in three districts in the Upper East and seven districts in the Northern Region were benefitting from the programme.
She said studies by the Institute of Statistical Social and Economic Research and the University of Carolina had revealed that the LEAP programme was making a positive impact on poverty alleviation in Ghana.
“It has increased school enrollment among secondary school aged children by seven per cent and reduced grade repetition among primary and secondary aged children,” she said.
By Anita Nyarko