Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Cash transfer programmes transfer cash to low-income households or individuals to expand social protection among the most vulnerable. Changes that happen during adolescence may impact whether or not a cash transfer programme is effective in encouraging certain behaviours.

Three teenage girls looking at a laptop smiling.

Cash transfer programmes have recently given cash directly to adolescents to encourage a range of health and social outcomes. The evidence for the effectiveness of these programmes has been mixed. Some studies show cash transfers to be effective in promoting desired behaviours among adolescents, such as school participation and reducing sexually transmitted infections, whereas others find no evidence for an effect. One possible reason for these mixed results is that cash transfer programmes targeting adolescents do not take into account the many biological, cognitive, and social changes that occur to young people during this transitional period.

An article, published in the Lancet Child & Adolescent Health, comments on how critical processes that are characteristic of adolescence e.g. rapid cognitive changes, peer influence, and engagement in risky behaviours, make it likely that cash transfer programmes have different effects depending on the adolescent's developmental trajectory and social context.

An outline of specific steps to consider in the design of future programmes includes informational interventions delivered by peer mentors and integrating components on self-esteem and peer influence. A developmental perspective that takes into account the mechanisms underlying behavioural changes in adolescence and how they vary both over time and between different life stages will help programme implementers to design effective interventions and increase the likelihood of promoting successful life-course choices for adolescents.

 

Giving cash to adolescents has many benefits, such as offering independence and autonomy from their parents, developing their own identity and making an important step towards financial independence. Adjusting cash transfer programmes to incorporate a developmental perspective in their design has the potential to alleviate material constraints and promote successful life-course choices for adolescents.Julia Ruiz Pozuelo, DPhil Student, Department of Psychiatry, University of Oxford.

 

 

 

 

 

NIHR OXFORD HEALTH BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH CENTRE NEWS

Please follow the link below to read the news on the NIHR BRC website.

Similar stories

Helping People with Psychosis Feel Less Distressed May Help Reduce the Risk of Self-harm

New research shows that by lessening the severity and impact of persecutory symptoms of psychosis, it may be possible to reduce the likelihood of someone with psychosis having thoughts of suicide or harming themselves.

Ground-breaking Treatment Offers New Hope for Patients with Persecutory Delusions

Feeling Safe is a new treatment programme for persecutory delusions, which promises a step change in the treatment of severe mental health problems.

Depressive Symptoms and Risky Behaviours Among Adolescents in Low-and Middle-Income Countries

New meta-analysis, published in the Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, shows adolescents with depressive symptoms were more likely to engage in risky behaviours compared with non-depressed adolescents.

Adolescent Mental Health and Development in the Digital World

A new project has been awarded funding from the UKRI £24 million investment into improving the mental health and wellbeing of adolescents in the UK.

£24m Investment into Adolescent Mental Health to Enable Young People to Flourish

UKRI have announced a major £24 million investment into improving the mental health and wellbeing of adolescents in the UK. One of the projects being funded is led by Professor Kam Bhui in the Department of Psychiatry, it will bring together diverse creative-arts, digital and health experts to investigate how adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) can affect adolescents' mental health.

£36 Million Boost for AI Technologies to Revolutionise NHS Care

An Oxford project using artificial intelligence to develop digital triage tools for mental health clinicians (CHRONOS) is one of 38 projects supported by the second wave of the NHS AI Lab's AI in Health and Care Award.