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Crowding-Out or Crowding-In? Effects of LEAP 1000 Unconditional Cash Transfer Program on Household and Community Support among Women in Rural Ghana

Citation

de Milliano, Marlous; Barrington, Clare; Angeles, Gustavo; & Gbedemah, Christiana (2021). Crowding-Out or Crowding-In? Effects of LEAP 1000 Unconditional Cash Transfer Program on Household and Community Support among Women in Rural Ghana. World Development, 143, 105466.

Abstract

Social protection programs are not introduced in a vacuum and it is important to understand what effects such programs have on existing informal support networks of family, friends and community members. A social cash transfer may reduce receipt of informal financial support, which can water down part of the program’s impact. However, cash transfers can also reduce barriers to social participation and enable participants to engage in reciprocal support systems. We use data from the quasi-experimental mixed method impact evaluation of Ghana’s Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) 1000 program, a social cash transfer program for pregnant women and mothers of children under one year living in poverty, to estimate program effects on social support and participation. Using a difference-in-differences approach we find that LEAP 1000 increases overall social support, as well as both emotional and instrumental support. In addition, program beneficiaries are more likely to participate in community groups. In in-depth interviews, participants confirmed increased support with descriptions of improved access to financial markets, such as borrowing money or contributing to local savings schemes, and strengthening of social participation in local groups and gatherings. Beneficiary women also highlighted reduced need for economic support and new opportunities to support others. By creating opportunities for additional social support within the household and community, LEAP 1000 crowded-in support, rather than reducing existing sources of support or crowding-out support.

URL

https://doi.org/10.1016/j.worlddev.2021.105466

Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published

2021

Journal Title

World Development

Author(s)

de Milliano, Marlous
Barrington, Clare
Angeles, Gustavo
Gbedemah, Christiana

Data Set/Study

Ghana’s Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) 1000 Program

Continent/Country

Ghana