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Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) programs in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) have improved the lives of millions of poor households across the region by improving children’s education and health (human capital), reducing poverty, and ensuring a minimum income for the poorest households. Implementing CCT programs requires significant institutional capacity to coordinate work across social sectors, and to implement beneficiary targeting systems, management information and monitoring systems, and transparent operational and technical processes.

Chronic malnutrition, or stunting, is a serious problem in Central America. Stunting rates in El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama are greater than 20 percent and the cost of malnutrition in these countries is estimated to range from 2.3 to 11.4 percent of GDP.1  A growing number of studies show that community-based growth promotion (CBGP) programs can help reduce malnutrition rates.