This document describes the main features of the RBF program supported by the World Bank in Mexico.
Since its creation in 1997, Oportunidades (then called PROGRESA) has received widespread attention for its success in helping millions of poor families exit the poverty cycle. Oportunidades focuses on nutrition, health and education. In 1997, coverage began with 300,000 families in defined rural areas; in 2001, the program had expanded to include semi-urban areas and by 2002 had reached the urban areas. Now in its fourteenth year of operation, Oportunidades covers more than 5.5 million poor families (approximately 25 percent of the country’s population) nationwide. Bank support to Oportunidades comprises of financing, knowledge and convening services that aims to expand and strengthen the program. The Bank initially committed US$1.5 billion in 2009, and devoted US$1.25 billion in additional financing to help scale-up activities in 2010.
The project aims to support the Government of Mexico’s conditional cash transfer (CCT) program, Oportunidades, which as of December 2010 served about 5.8 million families. The Bank’s operation principal Project Development Objectives (PDO) are:
- Increase capacities in health, nutrition and education of poor families through human capital investment by promoting regular health checkups, improving health status, and raising school enrollment and attendance rates.
- Build sustainable connection between Oportunidades and other social programs of the Government of Mexico in order to improve health and education outcomes for Program participants.
The first component of the Bank project provided up to US$1498 million to finance bi-monthly cash payments of up to 5 cash transfers to participating families who comply with the conditions. With the additional financing approved in 2010, the component received an additional US$1244 million.