By the A.M. Costa Rica staff
The Solís administration announced a plan Thursday to reduce
One innovation is to assign social workers to supervise poor families
and their use of government services.
The program is called Puente al Desarrollo, "Bridge to
Development." Over the remainder of the term of President Luis
Gullermo Solís, the government plans to include some 54,600
The financial stipend is not a lot, just 75,000 colons or about $142 a
month. But the selected families will have priority access to other
government services, including health insurance with the Caja
Costarricense de Seguro Social, the announcement said.
The program is being run by the Orwellian-sounding Ministro de
e Inclusión Social.
The government said that the families will be
guaranteed access to
social protection, connected with possible employment, given job
training, a dignified dwelling and the advantages of technology.
The families will be found in the 75 poorest districts of the country.
The government is using census data and online mapping to define the
areas. A number of other government agencies are involved.
Each social worker involved will seek out and oversee some 175 families
and create individual plans to lift them from extreme poverty, the
The government announcement said that this program will not cost any
extra money because it would be a process of moving existing budgets
around to make them more efficient.