Wow it would only take about 100 Billion Pesos per year to push up the income and practically eradicate extreme poverty in the Philippines. This makes me hopeful. Please do read the whole article.
Another measure of poverty is the poverty gap index representing the average amount of income required by the poor to reach the poverty line, in relation to the poverty line. APIS 2013 data shows that Pantawid has increased the income of beneficiaries so that they have moved closer to the poverty line: per peso cash grant, the poverty gap has been reduced by 61 centavos.
In 2013, Pantawid beneficiary families received an average of P1,407 of monthly cash grants, if they sent their 3 beneficiary children to school, and received health services for their household members. Without the cash grants, these families had an average per capita income of P13,293, whereas the poverty line per person was P19,262. Thus, the amounts given will not really help them cross the poverty line, but are only truly “Pantawid.” About half of cash grants are used for food, a quarter (25%) on educated-related expenses, while 7% is used on health, and close to nothing is used for recreation or alcohol.
The PSA estimated that in 2012, the “income gap” of the poor, i.e. the total amount required for all poor persons to cross the poverty line (assuming we could identify them and give them just what they needed, without even considering the costs of identifying them) was P136.6 billion, whereas the full CCT budget covered P39.4 billion.
So while the CCT budget is large, when you drill to the beneficiaries, this is still not enough to help them get out of poverty.