Improving nutrition-sensitivity of social protection programmes in Ghana

Laar AK, Aryeetey RNO, Mpereh M, Zotor FB (2017)


Social protection (SP) has been demonstrated as an effective tool against poverty and severe hunger. In Ghana, SP interventions have been employed to address vulnerability to poverty since 1965. Nevertheless, its potential for enhancing nutrition has hardly been explored. To harness the cross-sectoral benefits of scaling up nutrition-sensitive actions in Ghana, the national development planning commission requested an assessment of nutrition linkages across existing SP policies and programmes. The present paper presents gaps and opportunities for improving nutrition-sensitivity of existing SP programming in Ghana. The evidence draws heavily on desk review of available published and grey literature. The data show that SP provides an entry point for mainstreaming nutrition into other programmes. However, designing and coupling SP programmes with nutrition programmes remain a challenge in Ghana. Local SP interventions are predominantly designed as standalone services and therefore are implemented independent of each other. To increase synergy between SP and nutrition, including nutrition as an explicit objective of SP policies/strategies is recommended.


CT cash transfer; LEAP Livelihood Empowerment against Poverty Programme; NHIS National Health Insurance Scheme; SP social protection; Linkages; Nutrition; Social protection; Social transfers

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