Juan Karita/AP
Bolivian President Evo Morales

Free Homes For Single Mothers And Their Families In Bolivia

Rick Kearns

Building homes for low-income single mothers is the newest anti-poverty initiative of President Evo Morales of Bolivia.

In a press statement issued on December 26, Morales said the objective of the policy was to build houses for single mothers who had been abandoned by husbands or boyfriends and/or did not have the economic resources to take care of a family.

"It has been found that women [abandoned by their spouses] with various children are the new poor, since they remain unprotected, as much the ladies as the little ones, they must be helped to cover the necessities," Morales said.

"If they can acquire some land, a house can be built and that is the idea," he added. "We must create new social programs."

Morales noted that the new initiative would be implemented separately from prior policies created for women, such as the Juana Azurduy Grant, the Prenatal Universal Subsidy and the Dignity Rent program among others.

"The Vice President and Minister of the Presidency are meeting to make the Prenatal Universal Subsidy work very well," he said.

The Prenatal Universal Subsidy was announced in August and began implementation in October of last year. The government hopes to reach 70,000 single mothers per month throughout the country.

This policy targets single mothers who are not receiving Social Security. Eligible women receive 15 types of food in a package; each package includes quinoa, powdered milk, fruit juice, yogurt with fruit, chocolate, nuts, rice, flour, canned pineapple, almond supplements, honey, oil, oats and fruit-flavored cereal.

As of press time, the government had not announced when the new home building policy would begin.

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