The Programa Nacional de Apoyo Directo a los más Pobres - JUNTOS, Peru’s conditional cash transfer program, began coordinating with Proyecto Capital in 2009 to implement a pilot savings program connected with the Estrategia Nacional de Articulación Multisectorial CRECER in two districts in the country. The goal of the pilot program is to link the delivery of CCTs to beneficiaries with a program that promotes the use of savings accounts, creating an opportunity to offer poor rural families medium-range strategies that can foster their gradual graduation from the JUNTOS program and an eventual exit from poverty.
The pilot program consists of three components that were designed by an inter-institutional team consisting of the JUNTOS program, Banco de la Nación, the Secretaría Técnica de la Comisión Interministerial de Asuntos Sociales and AgroRural, Care Perú, with technical support from Proyecto Capital. The components are:
- Training and Financial Awareness:
Transmission of basic knowledge about the formal financial system and its characteristics, the main products and services offered, advantages in terms of security and trust, encouraging savings to build the family’s capital and effectively combat poverty.
- Financial Accompaniment:
Reinforcing the first component by monitoring and supporting the beneficiary women through local leaders and oversight of the household by the Local Promoter of the JUNTOS Program.
- Savings Incentives:
The incentive consists of a bi-monthly drawing for food baskets for two beneficiaries from each district where the pilot savings program is implemented.
The “Promoción del Ahorro en Familias JUNTOS” pilot program is an exploratory project that could eventually lead to the design of models that enable families to graduate from JUNTOS. The program is designed to provide beneficiaries of the JUNTOS Program with financial tools to better manage their cash flow, as well as with financial products. In short, it is a means of financial inclusion, which lays the groundwork for strategies for exiting poverty.
In 2010, the “Promoción del Ahorro en Familias JUNTOS” pilot program expanded to 24 more districts, benefiting a total of 24,300 women in seven regions of the country.
At the end of the first semester of 2012, an exit survey will be carried out in the 26 districts (a base line study was done in 2010) to determine the outcomes and impacts of this groundbreaking initiative in the country.
Throughout this process, Proyecto Capital has served as technical adviser to the government, providing ongoing accompaniment to the institutions involved in the pilot program to ensure that the initiative performs and functions well.