Globally, children are overrepresented among the poor, accounting for almost half of all people living in extreme poverty. Children are disproportionately hit by poverty and deprivation. Poverty harms children both while they are living through it, and in its long-term consequences. Almost one in three children (31 percent) in Bosnia and Herzegovina (Bosnia and Herzegovina) lives in consumption-based poverty. Poor children are significantly more deprived in every dimension according to the findings from the Multiple Overlapping Deprivation Analysis in Bosnia and Herzegovina (2015).
The main challenges for social services, social work and case management in Bosnia and Herzegovina are decentralization, accountability, standards and financing. Despite relatively high allocations of GDP to the social protection in Bosnia and Herzegovina, funds are not well targeted, and there is room to improve the effectiveness and efficiency in programs to protect children and to prevent and alleviate poverty. Additionally, the potential of cash transfers cannot be unleashed because of limited coverage of the poor. In addition, transfer values are too low to make a real difference in beneficiaries’ lives.
For children who experience discrimination and exclusion because of disability, gender, ethnicity or language, poverty reinforces and exacerbates the deprivations associated with being in a marginalized group and vice versa.
The specific needs of young people are rarely the focus of social protection systems, even though failing to invest in youth can have long-term implications for society. A lack of formal work history, resulting from their age and high degree of participation in the informal sector, significantly hinders the access of young people to social protection.