Bolsa Familia: Program Credited with Reducing Brazilian Poverty

Brazil Social WelfareIt was launched in 2004, under the former Lula administration, as a program to help the poorest in Brazil.

Bolsa Familia – loosely translated as Family Scholarship – was designed to eliminate extreme poverty and bring millions of Brazilians into the middle class.

The conditional cash transfer program has simple rules: families receive a monthly sum from the government, when they can prove they’ve kept their children in school, and sent them to clinics for regular check-ups.

Ten years later, Bolsa Familia has been credited with halving Brazil’s extreme poverty and, according to the World Bank, decreasing inequality in the country by 15 percent.

Elaine Reyes sat down with Brazilian Minister of Social Development Tereza Campello to speak about the program.

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