Indonesia is a large Southeast Asian country with a population of 267.7 million. As of 2019, 9.4% of Indonesians lived in poverty. Different programs both located in Indonesia and in other countries are innovating ways to eradicate poverty in Indonesia. Among them are cash transfer programs, food assistance programs, WASH sanitation programs and others. Here are five facts about innovations in poverty eradication in Indonesia.
5 Facts About Innovation in Poverty Eradication in Indonesia
- Poverty is declining each year, but not by much. From 1999 to 2013, the poverty rate in Indonesia went from 24% to 11.4%. However, in the years after that, the rate of poverty reduction has slowed to be 0.5% lower each year. In 2014, out of the Indonesians in the bottom 10% of the income bracket, only one-fifth received all governmental social assistance programs that they were eligible for.
- Conditional cash transfer programs are working to provide support to Indonesia’s poorest families. Program Keluarga Harapan, which translates to the Family Hope Program, is a social protection program. It provides assistance to very poor families in Indonesia. This program has been recently expanded to reach the 10 million poorest families in Indonesia. Program Keluarga Harapan focuses on targeting pregnant and breastfeeding mothers. It also focuses on families with toddlers and school-aged children.
- Non-cash food assistance programs deliver food assistance. By 2018, Indonesia expanded non-cash food assistance programs to serve about 10 million Indonesian families. These programs are similar to food stamp programs, and they deliver food assistance with a focus on proper nutrition. One of Indonesia’s longest-running food assistance programs is Rice for the Poor, also known as Raskin. Rice for the Poor is changing into an electronic voucher program that provides non-cash food assistance.
- Healthcare programs are also an imperative part of poverty reduction. When faced with illness or health problems, low-income households are often at financial risk. Indonesia’s Healthcare Guarantee Program, known as Jamkesmas, protects low-income families from this risk when they become ill. As of 2012, this program covered about 76.4 million people in the low-income bracket in Indonesia.
- WASH programs help improve access to clean water. Indonesia Urban Wash, Sanitation and Hygiene (IUWASH) partners with a local water utility and micro-finance institution. It helps provide services to families and small business owners in order to allow them to build bathrooms that are hygienic and safe. In 1990, only 35% of Indonesians had access to sanitation facilities. In 2015, that percentage jumped to 61%. Additionally, sanitation services and clean water can improve the health of many families, particularly low-income ones.
Overall, these programs are all essential in reducing and eradicating poverty in Indonesia. Poverty, homelessness and hunger are still relevant issues in Indonesia. However, these programs will pave the way for more innovations in poverty eradication in Indonesia that can also help in other parts of the world.
– Ayesha Asad