Latin America and the Caribbean

MCO Barbados

Social Protection

Towards Universal Adaptive Social Protection in the Eastern Caribbean

Sustainable Development Goals

Brief programme description

The Caribbean is the most indebted region in the world and highly vulnerable to large-scale shocks including economic crises, public health emergencies, displacement and climate-related disasters. In a region where one in four people (24%) live in poverty, with a poverty rate that is even higher among children (33%), no one should be left behind and face such events without adequate social protection. The Joint Programme aims to make social protection more adaptive – linking it to disaster risk management and adapting to climate change – to ensure people have the means to prepare and can access support during and after crises. It also seeks to expand social protection towards universal access for people in Barbados, Saint Lucia and across the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS). This will support the ultimate goal of reducing structural inequality, reducing poverty and building resilience. 


Predictable access to universal and adaptive social protection will be promoted through an approach that spans and connects national, community and regional levels. At the national level, the Joint Programme will contribute to strengthening national social protection systems to support integrated service delivery by improving institutional capacities and through evidence-based, gender-responsive social and disaster risk management policies and legislation. It will also strengthen these systems through improved management and operational tools. The Joint Programme will support the introduction of innovative financing strategies to ensure fiscal sustainability and expanded coverage of the social protection system. At the community level, the Joint Programme will support the design of innovative community-based adaptive and shock responsive services within existing national programmes to generate evidence for social protection reform and strengthen the targeted communities’ ability to anticipate, absorb and recover from major shocks. At the regional level, the Joint Programme works with the OECS to promote legal and policy coherence across the Eastern Caribbean will be supported by strengthening regional capacities, inter-institutional engagement and South-South cooperation in the Eastern Caribbean.

Target groups

Women, children, persons with disabilities, older persons.



Quick facts

Total budget:
US $ 4,804,402

UN Agencies:


National Partners:

St Lucia 

Ministry of Equity, Social Justice, Empowerment, Youth Development, Sports and Local Government; National Emergency Management Organization; Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development; Ministry of Education, Innovation, Gender Relations and Sustainable Development; Ministry of Infrastructure 


Ministry of People Empowerment and Elder Affairs; Department of Emergency Management, Ministry of Home Affairs; Ministry of Finance, Economic Affairs and Investment; Ministry of Labour and Social Partnership Relations; Ministry of Education, Technological and Vocational Training; Ministry of Health and Wellness 


January 15, 2020 to January 14, 2022 (24 months)

Financial Information