The quality of life of Saint Lucia’s most vulnerable will be further safeguarded as the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) approved a loan of USD 5.2 million to shore up the Government’s assistance to those most at risk.
The Safety Nets for Vulnerable Populations Affected by Coronavirus Project – Saint Lucia will expand existing social protection programmes to reduce vulnerability and increase social resilience by supporting the basic needs of those disproportionately impacted by the effects of COVID-19 measures. Beyond increasing the resources available for citizens, the project will also address severe challenges in special needs education. This is in keeping with regional and global commitments to advance equitable, inclusive, and quality education by enhancing access and learning support for this demographic.
According to Vice President, Operations, at CDB Mr Isaac Solomon, “the intervention will address poverty, contribute to easing the economic and social disruptions, temper the pressure on the social protection system, support the most vulnerable including single parent households, children with disabilities, children in foster care, and Persons Living with HIV. It will also enable learning continuity of students, as well as at-risk youth whose needs are being met through state-funded institutions.”
CDB has been an important social protection partner for Saint Lucia. Over the past 50 years, the Bank has provided significant financial investments and technical support for social protection initiatives to prevent, mitigate and manage the risks faced by vulnerable populations. CDB’s flagship poverty reduction programme – the Basic Needs Trust Fund – exemplifies the various aspects of social protection by providing access to basic socio-economic infrastructure and social services. The Bank will continue to strengthen strategic alliances among donor agencies to mobilise additional resources, promote sustainability and ensure coordination of social protection interventions in Saint Lucia.