Gendered risks, poverty and vulnerability in Ghana: is the LEAP cash transfer programme making a difference?

Briefing papers
November 2010
Christiana Gbedemah, Nicola Jones and Paola Pereznieto

While Ghana has made strong progress in aggregate poverty reduction and is hailed as a success story in African development, gender vulnerabilities and risks remain significant. Women in Ghana are generally poorer than their male counterparts, less literate, face heavier burdens on their time and are less likely to utilise productive resources. A majority of female-headed households (61% of urban and 53% of rural) fall into the poorest quintile of the population, and this number has increased from around 25.7% in 1960 to over 33% in 2003.

Social protection has contributed to Ghana’s poverty reduction progress, with programmes being expanded to include the poorest and most vulnerable. This project briefing analyses findings from an ODI study funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID) which explores linkages between gender and social protection effectiveness. It focuses on the Government’s cash transfer programme, Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) – a pioneering initiative for the West African sub-region.

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