The World Bank has committed to providing approximately $300 million in financial support to Bangladesh for the Beneficiary Enhancing Investment Benefit for Early Years (BEIBEY) project. This initiative aims to boost human capital formation through early childhood development (ECD). The project will be a collaboration between the Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) and the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs (MoWCA), focusing on enhancing community support services and improving the women and childcare system in rural Bangladesh.
LGED will work on enhancing the capacity of union parishads (UPs) and community support service staff, while MoWCA will support early childcare and women’s care systems. This includes cash transfers to mothers to improve childcare and nutrition. Currently, child-focused programs in Bangladesh receive only about 2.0% of the total social protection budget, and the WB emphasizes the importance of appropriate resource allocation to ECD for breaking the cycle of poverty and maximizing human capital formation during the early years. Despite progress, Bangladesh still faces challenges in child health and learning outcomes, with a significant global stunting rate of 4.0%.