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The "Arrow" project will help us to get out of the vicious cycle of poverty, on October 4, 2017, the newspaper "Central Asia Monitor"

State-reformed measures of social support for Kazakhstanis are showing increasing effectiveness every year. One of the most successful examples of recent times is the "Orleu" project implemented by the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection.

It was born after the country's president Nursultan Nazarbayev delivered a message to the people of Kazakhstan "Nurly Jol - the way to the future." The project provides for the provision of conditional cash assistance to low-income segments of the population through the conclusion of a social contract. Its participants can become citizens or families whose average income per person is less than 60 percent of the subsistence level.

Low-income citizens assume the obligation to actively participate in the proposed measures of employment and social adaptation, and the state, in turn, financially supports them during the year - the period for which they must stand on their own. Simply put, program participants receive assistance from the state only when the terms of the social contract are met.

"The goal of the project is to give the family an opportunity to escape from the vicious circle of poverty. It is most important. That they could provide themselves with everything necessary for a quality life,"- comment on the problems of" Orleu" in the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of the Population.

Around this initiative of the social agency once raged serious passions, but even the most rabid critics had to admit that the traditional forms of state aid often only generated dependency and in no way stimulated the recipients to help themselves at least a finger to strike a finger to improve their financial situation. As a result, state billions flew into the pipe, because there was no return from this kind of "investment". The "Arrow" project has just become an effective tool that put an end to this vicious practice. It is one of the important components of the modernization of the social protection system being carried out in Kazakhstan today, aimed at rejecting passive forms of state aid, which in most countries have already been recognized as ineffective.

This year, around 150,000 Kazakhstanis will receive support under the "Orleu" project. Seven billion tenge was allocated from the budget for these purposes. As of August 1, the number of participants in the project has already exceeded 122,000 people. Its popularity among the population is quite understandable. After all, the state provides real assistance to citizens, helping them not only to get a job in their specialty or to start a new career after completing the courses of retraining, but even to open their own business within the framework of another state program - the Employment Road Map-2020. It is no coincidence that the site of the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of Population is full of success stories of those to whom participation in the program allowed us to get out of a difficult life situation. Here are just a few of them.

Zhanilgan Adildayev, a resident of the Sozak district of the South Kazakhstan region, was allocated a little more than one hundred thousand tenge within the framework of the project. Having purchased a sewing machine and fabrics for these funds, she opened a sewing workshop and now, having received an opportunity to earn, has a monthly income of about 50 thousand tenge.

Serik Kerimtayev from the Abai district of East Kazakhstan region has a large family of eight. But its aggregate monthly income did not exceed 35 thousand tenge. During the time of participation in the project, the amount of conditional cash assistance rendered to the head of the family was 79 thousand tenge. And in addition, in the framework of the "Employment Road Map-2020" he received a micro loan of one million tenge, which allowed him to engage in breeding horses.

In the family of the Mamashevs from the Taskalin District of the WKR, there are three underage children. The spouses themselves are self-employed. After participating in the program, the mother of the family was employed by a cleaner to the school, and her husband received a social job in one of the peasant farms in the district. In addition, the family received one head of cattle for the provided financial assistance.

In short, the benefits to people of such measures of state support are already evident. According to the data voiced by representatives of the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of Population, the result of participation in the project was that the incomes of such families increased at least twice. From the point of view of the state, the effect is to reduce the proportion of the able-bodied population among the recipients of targeted social assistance, as well as to reduce the number of low-income families.

There is every reason to suppose that the same social reform will lead to the same results, which is scheduled for January 1 next year. After all, the "Orleu" project is, among other things, and a kind of approbation of new mechanisms and approaches in providing the state with targeted social assistance to the most vulnerable segments of the population.

From next year targeted social assistance will be provided in a new format. Its recipients will be families with incomes below 50 percent of the subsistence level per household member. There will be two types of monetary assistance - unconditional and conditional. The first will be given to families in which there are not those who could work. This, for example, families of disabled people or single pensioners or families whose able-bodied members for objective reasons cannot participate in measures to promote employment. For example, a mother educates preschool children, so her compulsory participation in employment measures is not required to receive benefits. At the same time, Svetlana Zhakupova, the vice-minister of labor and social protection of the population, recently noted that all disabled citizens who need state support will receive increased benefits from January 1, 2018.

As for conditional cash assistance, it will be provided to families in which there is at least one able-bodied person, subject to the conclusion of a social contract and the mandatory participation of all able-bodied family members in measures to promote employment.

The introduction of a new format of social assistance in the budget of the profile ministry for 2018 provides for additional funds in the amount of 42.8 billion tenge. The reform will affect almost 250,000 families receiving special state benefits, over 175,000 families receiving child support, and over 6.5 thousand families receiving targeted social assistance.

Just the facts

In pilot mode, the "Orleu" project was launched in 2014 in Akmola, East Kazakhstan and Zhambyl region. Since July 1, 2015, similar regional pilot projects have been launched in 38 districts and cities at the expense of local budgets. Since 2016 the project has acquired a massive character and was introduced in all regions of Kazakhstan. According to the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of Population, its implementation contributed to an increase in the average per capita income of project participants by more than 2.6 times, and 99.4% of able-bodied citizens of the working age who signed the social contract managed to capture employment.

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In 2016, more than 38,000 Kazakhstanis people received social assistance in the pilot mode of the "Orleu" project. They were assigned conditional cash assistance in the amount of 1.4 billion tenge. Almost 9,000 people, or 90.5 percent of the total number of able-bodied project participants, were involved in active forms of employment assistance.

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The South-Kazakhstan region, the most densely populated region of our country, is the leader in the implementation of the "Orleu" project. In just six months of this year, about 75,000 SKR citizens received support from the state within the framework of this program. The total amount of assistance was 3.6 billion tenge. Of the able-bodied recipients, 13,846 people are covered by measures to promote employment, including 11,528 people, or 89.7 percent, are employed.

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