This multidimensional child poverty report presents the child poverty situation in Lesotho based on multiple and overlapping deprivation analysis using data in the 2018 Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS). Lesotho has successfully reduced poverty in the past fifteen years, with the overall national poverty ratios decreasing from 56.6 per cent in 2002 to 49.7 per cent in 2017, and absolute poverty from 34.1 per cent in 2002 and 24.1 per cent in 2017.
Thanks to a widespread Social Protection Programme, inequality registered a drop, with the Gini index falling from 51.9 in 2002 to 44.6 in 2017. The report utilises the National Multidimensional Overlapping Deprivation Analysis (N-MODA) methodology (De Neuborg, et al., 2012) and measures trends since the 2018 N-MODA analysis. The methodology hinges on the Alkire and Foster method used to measure Multidimensional Poverty (Alkire & Foster, 2011) at the global level.
The Lesotho N-MODA focuses on eight dimensions, four (education, nutrition, health, and protection from violence), which are measured at the level of the child. The other four namely: water, sanitation, housing, and access to information, are measured at the household level, meaning they affect all household members equally, regardless of age. Even though there are eight dimensions in total, three age groups, 0-23 months, 5-12 years, and 13-17 years, were assessed against seven dimensions defining their welfare, while six were considered for the aged group 24-59 months. One or more indicators define each dimension.
To measure deprivation in a particular dimension, indicators are aggregated into dimensions using the union approach, which considers a child as deprived in the specific indicator when her status falls below the agreed threshold. Likewise, a child is considered deprived in a dimension if she is deprived in any one indicator. A child is considered multidimensionally poor if deprived in 3 dimensions simultaneously. In the multidimensional poverty status computation, all dimensions have equal weight as there is no trade-off between child rights.