Quantitative analysis of the impact of the Child Support Grant
New evidence on the developmental impacts of South Africa’s Child Support Grant
This report presents new evidence on the developmental impacts of South Africa’s Child Support Grant (CSG), widely regarded as one of the government’s most successful social protection interventions and the country’s largest social cash transfer programme in terms of the number of participants. This nonexperimental evaluation employs a propensity score matching approach with the EPRI-constructed General Household Survey panel from 2002 to 2004, matching CSG-eligible children under the age of 7 in 2002 who received the CSG in 2003 and 2004 with eligible children not receiving the CSG in 2003 and 2004. The study documents positive, statistically significant effects of the CSG in reducing child hunger and improving school attendance (pre-school and early grades). In addition, some positive, statistically significant effects on maintaining household-level agricultural production and increasing access to cell phones are observed. These positive findings suggest the potential for a more extensive, forward-looking study to further explore and confirm the impacts of the Child Support Grant and support its expansion to all children.