Islamabad: Benazir Income Support Program is committed to reach up to 5.6 million families across the country by the end of current fiscal year through its welfare programs.
This has been expressed at a presentation at BISP headquarters in Islamabad‚ which was also attended by the diplomatic community and donor agencies at large.
Addressing the gathering‚ Chairman BISP Enver Baig said so far BISP has disbursed 192 billion rupees among five million families between 2008 and 2014. He informed that more than 32 billion rupees have been distributed in first two quarters of this year.
He said the program is a ray of hope for millions of under-privileged people of Pakistan who are surviving on less than 1.25 US dollars per day.
The chairman said enhanced support for the program is manifestation of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s commitment for the fight against poverty.
He said in the first budget of PML-N government‚ the unconditional cash grant for the program beneficiaries was increased from one-thousand rupees to twelve hundred rupees per month.
Talking about future social protection agenda of BISP‚ Enver Baig said one of the key elements of the program is to focus on making millions of the beneficiaries economically independent through skill development. He said this is an essential element in improving the employability and potential productivity of the working poor.
He said BISP intends to train skilled labour to meet the gulf market demand and enhance the flow of remittances to at least twenty-four billion dollars in the next two years.
He said BISP with the cooperation of Punjab government will also impart a training program to the beneficiaries by using the broad-based network of its technical institutes.
Later‚ the secretary BISP Haseeb Ather told that so far the international donors including World Bank‚ USAID‚ Asian Development Bank and DFID have provided 1.25 billion dollars’ assistance for BISP since the launch of the program.