Old people are often dependent on others for meeting their needs-economically as well as for physical support. However, in Pakistan and Punjab, there is little support available for old people through the public sector. The available support is mostly limited for formal sector employees with pensions, EOBI, Workers Welfare Fund or Employees’ Social Security Institutions, etc. Therefore, there is a coverage gap in the case of many employees not covered by such support and old population in general.
In Punjab, there was a little financial support available for elderly people through the public sector beyond the formal sector employees. PSPA aims to bridge this gap by launching Ba-himmat Buzurg Program. The goal of this program is to improve socio-economic wellbeing of the poor elderly people in the Punjab. This program is designed with the following objectives:
- To improve the social inclusion of the poor elderly people by providing them dignified social pension.
- To improve the subsistence of poor elderly people.
- To reduce the dependency of poor elderly people on their social network.
This social pension program aims to protect older persons aged 65 and above from livelihood risks and to enable them to live a dignified life. This program currently provides financial assistance of Rs. 2000 monthly to the elderly females of the families, who are not eligible for the Ehsaas Kafalat Program (BISP). In the case of eligible female's death as per the given criteria, the male members of the family, aged 65 years and above, are eligible. An allocation of Rs. 2,400 million has been made for the FY 2021-22 for this program. So far, 80,000 elderly people are benefiting from this initiative. This program will cover most vulnerable individuals in Punjab and provide them with the means of meeting their financial needs.