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21 October 2016: Study reveals youth face challenges in absence of social safety net measures

© UNICEF Tanzania/2016
Dessemination of the PSSN Impact Evaluation Baseline Survey Report on October 21, 2016.

Three out of every four youth living in households targeted for support from the Productive Social Safety Net (PSSN) did not have their basic material needs met prior to being on the programme, according to research findings presented today at an event presided over by the Permanent Secretary, Peter Llomo, from State House.

Researchers from the World Bank, the National Bureau of Statistics, REPOA and UNICEF were also present at the event, along with government and development partners.

By comparing their lives at baseline and a year and a half later, this UNICEF/REPOA study will help us understand whether the PSSN has the potential to allow more youth to enrol in school, to have an improved outlook for the future, and to engage in less risky behaviours driven by economic insecurity.

Baseline findings indicate that 48 per cent of youth aged 14–17 years living in PSSN-targeted households are not enrolled in school. Rates of youth expressing depressive symptoms are as high as 52 per cent among the 14–17 age group and 71 per cent among the 18–28 age group. HIV-risk behaviours are also prevalent, as are experiences of emotional, physical and sexual violence among females.

A 19 year-old youth from Kisarawe told researchers, “Life has become so difficult; things are not easy because it’s hard to get a job, or even having something to do, with my standard 7 level of education…I also need a house, good clothes, enough food for my family. This is what worries me; I am concerned about my wellbeing and my family’s wellbeing.”

“The findings come at a critical time,” says UNICEF Representative in Tanzania, Maniza Zaman. “Over the next 10–15 years, Tanzania’s largest ever youth population will enter their economically productive years. Yet youth in Tanzania face many barriers to reaching their potential. Some are unable to complete their education, and many youth, girls in particular, are at risk of early marriage and pregnancy, violence, and HIV. Youth also often lack economic opportunities.”



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