This report reviews existing quantitative and qualitative evidence about childhood poverty in Kyrgyzstan, its causes and the main policies aiming to address it. Childhood poverty is a much more serious and widespread problem than is often recognised - the majority of both rural and urban children live in poverty and 20-25 per cent live in households unable to meet their basic food needs. The report discusses the impact of poverty on children's wellbeing and opportunities, focusing on health and nutrition and education, and explores the situation of particularly vulnerable groups, such as street children and child workers. It analyses the main approaches to reducing childhood poverty through the National Poverty Reduction Strategy (NPRS) and related programmes, concluding that, though the NPRS has the potential to reduce childhood poverty, a more integrated and holistic approach to childhood poverty is needed. In particular, tackling childhood poverty cannot be reduced to social work support to families facing particular difficulties - much more systemic investment in family livelihoods and education and health services is required.
Yarkova, T., Botoeva, G., Reeves, M., Konokbaev, K., Yarkova, N., Marcus, R., Satybaldieva, E. (2004) CHIP Report 1: Childhood poverty in Kyrgyzstan: Initial literature review. Childhood Poverty Research and Policy Centre (CHIP), London, UK, ISBN: 1-904922-00-7, ii + 64 pp.