On Wednesday (31/3/2021), Puskas BAZNAS joined “Impact Evaluation of the Transition from Rastra to BPNT: Preliminary Findings” Webinar held by J-PAL South East Asia (J-PAL SEA). The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab or J-PAL is a global research center working to reduce poverty by ensuring that policy is informed by scientific evidence.

The Webinar invited prominent panellists such as Maliki (Bappenas), Elan Satriawan (TNP2K, UGM), Sudarno Sumarto (SMERU, TNP2K), Rema Hanna (Harvard, J-PAL) and Benjamin Olken (MIT, J-PAL). The event started with Keynote Speech from ministries and embassy like Tb. A. Choesni (Kemenko PMK), Asep Sasa Purnama (Kemensos), Vivi Yulaswati (Bappenas), Ryan Washburn (USAID), and Simon Ernst (Australian Embassy Jakarta).

The webinar discussed the transition from Rastra to Non-Cash Food Assistance (BPNT), the largest social assistance reform Indonesia has ever carried out in 20 years. The transition itself begs the question: Can the new program improve the welfare of Indonesia’s most vulnerable household? The findings show that The BNPT provided concentrated assistance to targeted households, who received 45 percent more assistance in BNPT areas than in in-kind (Rastra) districts. As a result, for households in the bottom 15 percent at baseline, poverty fell by 20 percent, and in the bottom 5 percent at baseline, it fell by 24 percent.

Through this webinar, Puskas gained a lot of knowledge related to the large scale program impact evaluation method which BNPT Program itself had carried out. In the future, Puskas BAZNAS can collaborate with related stakeholders in alleviating poverty through an Islamic social finance instrument called zakah.

 

Rep: Puskas BAZNAS