Supporting Social Protection Systems

Social protection is defined as a broad range of public, and sometimes private, instruments to tackle the challenges of poverty, vulnerability and social exclusion. Increasingly, social protection measures are being used to mitigate vulnerabilities as they occur across the human life cycle, to maintain dignity, to promote the rights of individuals and to contribute to pro-poor and inclusive economic growth through building human capital and enabling poor people to increase their participation in economically productive activities. Social protection instruments include a range of both contributory and non-contributory schemes and the term encompasses a range of poverty reduction mechanisms, such as cash transfers, insurance schemes, programmes facilitating access to social services and associated developmental measures to promote livelihoods or financial inclusion. These services can be distributed to individuals, households and, in certain instances, whole communities. These services, when integrated with other complementary developmental initiatives, yield impacts on poverty, vulnerability and social exclusion and improve a range of developmental impacts.

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