Social protection

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Social protection

Social protection is a human right and an important factor in helping people out of extreme poverty. By social protection we mean all forms of payments that governments regulate, provide or make available to citizens. These ensure the development of democratic, inclusive and tolerant societies.

These sources of payment should be predictable and reliable – either in cash, in-kind or a combination of both. Social protection helps people maintain a minimum standard of living. 

Our policy

Our policy aims to improve the well-being of extremely poor people by increasing the social protection offered by their governments. We do this by:

  • Promoting the right poor people have to social protection
  • Advocating for the increase of social protection in official policies and budgets
  • Working for an increase in the provision of social protection schemes
  • Taking the stigma out of receiving social protection
  • Contributing to the definition of a minimum standard of living

We have designed and implemented “safety net” programmes, which have provided life-saving support to people in Kenya, Zimbabwe, Somalia, Niger and Haiti.   


Concern Worldwide co-sponsored the Centre for Social Protection Conference “Social Protection and Social Justice” at the Institute for Development Studies, Sussex. The conference explored future directions for social protection. It also addressed broader concerns such as social injustice and the re-distribution of equity.

Concern presented four papers at the conference that drew from our experience supporting social protection systems in India, Zimbabwe, Kenya and Sierra Leone. The papers offered lessons on how social protection can be made more effective for protecting and empowering vulnerable people and contributing to more equitable social outcomes.

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