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Cash help for kids under two, pregnant women continues

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A pregnant factory worker leaves her workplace in Phnom Penh’s Meanchey district last year. Heng Chivoan

Cash help for kids under two, pregnant women continues

The government has provided a total of $14.36 million in cash assistance to nearly 240,000 pregnant women and children under the age of two from June of 2019 to December 28 last year. The programme will continue into 2022.

Ministry of Social Affairs, Veterans and Youth Rehabilitation spokesman Touch Channy said on January 2 that it is now a permanent social assistance programme provided to the target group through the ministry.

“We will summarise the results of the annual implementation of the cash support programme for pregnant women and children under the age of two on January 24,” he said.

Social affairs minister Vong Soth spoke about the programme at the opening ceremony of the Youth Rehabilitation Education Centre on December 28.

“So far, since 2019, we have provided services to nearly 240,000 pregnant women and children, with a total state budget of $14.36 million, and this is now a permanent social assistance programme,” he said.

The minister confirmed that it is different from the other cash assistance programmes for poor and vulnerable families during the fight against Covid-19 that were announced on June 24, 2020, and ran until December 28 last year. During that 17 month period, about 700,000 beneficiary families were given assistance paid for out of a state budget of around $502 million.

According to the ministry, the cash support programme for pregnant women and children under two aims to address the malnutrition of infants and children in poor families starting from birth to promote physical and mental growth and participate in promoting maternal and infant welfare.

To receive cash from the programme, pregnant women and children in this age group must have an equity or health priority card and get pregnancy check-ups and immunisation services at a public health facility.

This programme consists of three stages, the first of which is to provide 40,000 riel ($10) to the pregnant women who receive four prenatal check-ups.

The second stage provides 200,000 riel for the women when they give birth. The third provides 40,000 riel each time the women comes in for a post-partum health check-up or vaccination prior to their children reaching the age of two, with a 10 visit maximum.


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