A delegation of 10 Government of Bangladesh officials from Cabinet Division, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Social Welfare, Ministry of Women and Children Affairs, Local Government Division, Planning Commission and UNICEF visited Thailand to have a better understanding of the system architecture of Thailand’s Child Support Grant Programme including policy environment around it and replicability of a similar programme in Bangladesh context. National Project Director of Social Security Policy Support (SSPS) Programme also accompanied the delegation.
The study tour started with a visit to Country Office of UNICEF Thailand to better understand UNICEF programmes in Thailand on social protection and social policies and to receive overall briefing on program agenda of the study visit. The delegation then visited Ministry of Social Development and Human Security (MSDHS) and Department of Elderly Persons/ Department of Disability to understand Thailand’s social development and human security, social assistance landscaping, policy environment around it, major reforms and results yielded, key institutions, impact of social assistance schemes, and take away for Bangladesh Social Assistance Schemes, including Old-age allowance, Disability grant and other grants. Later, the delegation visited Department of Children and Youth/Comptroller General’s Department to better understand the system architecture of the Child Support Grant Programme, key institutions, key partners, coordination mechanism at different levels, accountability framework, complaint and grievance mechanism, strategies adopted to increase participation rate particularly in hard to reach areas, Challenges (implementation, coordination, payment, institutional).
On the second day, the delegation visited Pakkred Babies Home to observe and understand the overall care for young mother and their children in public child and family shelter at the provincial level as well as key challenges and later, visited Ayutthaya Historical Parks to understand the Thai history and cultures. On 5th September, the delegation visited Child and Family Shelter Bangkok to observe and understand the overall care for young mother and their children in public child and family shelter in Bangkok as well as their key challenges. Later that day, the delegation visited Chonburi Provincial MSDHS Office to understand the overall coordination in the field as well as key challenges regarding CSG.
On 6th September, the delegation visited Thailand Development Research Institute (TDRI) to understand the impact evaluation and lessons learnt from the CSG and other social support schemes in Thailand. Later, the delegation visited Social Security Office and Fiscal Policy Office to understand the SSO’s social security schemes for workers and Their families in Thailand, the expansion of the schemes as well as current policy challenges and poverty identification system, the administration of the Social Welfare Card as well as key challenges before returning back to Bangladesh on the 7th.