Peru gives financial aid to ‘Covid orphans’

Peru gives financial aid to ‘Covid orphans’
Belen neighborhood in Iquitos, Peru. Photo: Jess Kraft/Shutterstock

The government in Peru announced the start of an aid scheme to pay USD 55 per month to children who lost their parents to Covid-19. According to Silvana Vargas, Peru’s Development and Social Inclusion Minister, nearly 11,000 minors became orphaned since March 2020. 

Congress approved the so-called “orphan pension” in July 2020, only being regulated now. The program will cost PEN 24 million (USD 6.5 million). The government said on March 6 that the benefits will be transferred “within the next 20 days.”

With its fragile health system and over 70 percent of the workforce in informal jobs, Peru quickly developed one of the world’s highest Covid-19 death rates. As of today, the 32.9-million-people country has more than 1.3 million coronavirus cases and 47,800 confirmed deaths. 


Peru’s vaccination program began on February 9, with over 320,000 people (mostly health workers) receiving a first jab. Just 63,000 have had both vaccine doses. The government in Lima intends to vaccinate 25 million people by the end of the year. 

The country kicked off its vaccination of senior citizens this week, inoculating a 104-year-old woman in Lima.

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