Bolsa Família and women’s autonomy: What do the qualitative studies tell us?

by Letícia Bartholo
The International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth Research Brief 57, November 2016

5 pp. 113 kB

The Programa Bolsa Família (PBF) currently serves 13.8 million Brazilian families – corresponding to the poorest 25 per cent of the population – combining cash transfers with conditionalities met by the beneficiaries. PBF households must fulfil education and health conditionalities that depend on family composition. Regarding health care, pregnant women must undergo prenatal care, nursing mothers must monitor their health status and that of their babies, and children up to 6 years old must follow the vaccination schedule. In education, individuals younger than 15 years old must attend 85 per cent of classes; those aged 16–17 must attend 75 per cent of classes. Transferring the money directly to women increases the likelihood that it will be used to benefit the entire family. Currently, women are the benefit recipients in 92 per cent of beneficiary households, regardless of family arrangement.

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