Haiti begins cash transfer social program

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The Haitian government has launched a program that uses mobile phones to transfer cash credits to mothers who keep their children in school.

The program is called "Ti Manman Cheri," or Creole for "Dear Little Mother." It aims to reach 100,000 families in four of the capital's poorest neighborhoods.

Mothers with children enrolled in the first through sixth grades can receive up to $20 a month if they keep the youngsters in school.

Venezuela's Petrocaribe fund is providing the $15 million for the program. The fund supplies fuel to Caribbean and Central American countries.

Similar conditional cash transfer programs have been employed in Brazil, Mexico and the Dominican Republic.

Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe announced the program Sunday at a school in the sprawling Cite Soleil slum.