The Inter-American Development Bank announced the approval of $12.5 million in financing to Nicaragua for the Comprehensive Child Care Program (PAININ).
The project will provide support for the comprehensive development of children under six years of age living in extreme poverty in rural areas by providing opportunities to receive services including enrollment in school.
This latest stage of PAININ marks the completion of nearly 15 years of IDB support for Nicaraguan child development. Through institutional and mobile services, educators and volunteers provide children and families with access to early learning programs, dietary supplements, height and weight monitoring, screening for pregnant women, support for civil registration of minors, and training in parenting practices.
Over the years, PAININ has led to significant improvements in nutrition, growth, development, and education of the target population, and has become the focal point of the country’s social policy. The evaluation of the second IDB financing for this program indicated a 17.7 percent increase in first grade enrollment for six-year-old children enrolled in PAININ. Results also included a 42.7 percent increase in early education assistance and a 13.3 percent rise in preschool attendance.
"This financing is the first in a series of multi-year loans to the government that will make it possible to continue PAININ for at least another four years,” said Claudia Uribe, head of the IDB project team. “It complements another recently approved IDB operation that provides services to children under six years of age in urban areas."
Nicaragua’s per capita income of $1,023 makes it the second poorest country in the Americas after Haiti. Poverty is mainly a rural phenomenon that disproportionately affects children under five and their mothers.
The new financing consists of a loan of $6.25 million, with a 30 year term, a grace period of 5.5 years, and a fixed interest rate, plus a concessional loan of $6.25 million, with a term and a grace period of 40 years and an interest rate of 0.25 percent.