Analyzing poverty reduction and community development programs of Pakistan: outcomes, challenges and lessons learned
Pakistan is the home to a large number of poor, constituting about one-third of its population. The government of Pakistan launched several poverty reductions and rural development programs to increase the productivity of the rural poor through agricultural growth and other human-resource-related measures. This study has reviewed 14 community development programs by dividing them into five major phases, i.e., Rural Development Programs, Land Reforms, Employment Creation Schemes based on Direct Credit, Human Development Programs, and Poverty Alleviation Programs. The present study has demonstrated that the country, since its inception, been struggling for poverty reduction by introducing multi-dimensional approaches from time to time. Despite numerous efforts, the poverty rate remained at around 30.0% of the population during the last five to six decades. This article overviews the incidence and leading causes of poverty, major poverty reduction, and community-based rural development programs carried out in Pakistan with the assistance of international and national agencies. It further debates the country’s experiences with poverty reduction, achieved targets, challenges faced, and lessons learned. This study provides significant implications for future initiatives to acquire tangible results in poverty reduction and rural development.
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