There and rural children, improve quality, and increase

There are 1.6 million school age children out of school in Yemen, most of them in rural areas
(UNICEF 2014). Despite the government’s efforts – with the support of international
development partners – to achieve the millennium development goals, enrollment rates are
still low. The dropout rates are high, particularly among girls, and are much higher in rural
areas than in urban areas (World Bank 2010). There are many obstacles that limit the spread
of girls’ education in Yemen, most notably: poor public awareness, lack of teachers in
schools (especially in rural areas), mixed schools, early marriage, poverty, lack of attractive
girl-friendly school environment (e.g. fences, latrines) and distance to school (Al-Houthi
1999).
Since the late 1990s, the Ministry of Education (MOE) in Yemen has introduced several
policy measures to expand access for girls and rural children, improve quality, and increase
the efficiency of primary education. Increasing the efficiency of school construction, basing
school location on school mapping, placing small schools closer to girls’ homes, obtaining
community participation in school construction and management as well as planning for
large-scale programs of in-service teacher training are some key measures (Ogawa 2005).
As a strategy to reduce costs associated with schooling, conditional cash transfer (CCT)
scheme in Yemen was designed to transfer resources to households on condition that they
enroll their girls in school. In order to encourage retention and improve enrollment of girls in
grades 4-9, girls are provided with incentives for learning. This intervention targeted girls in
poor areas where dropout rates are high, especially for girls (Duret et al. 2010).
Applying the six benchmark criteria proposed by Andreasen (2002) for identifying social
marketing interventions (see Table 1), CCT is found to be an example of social marketing
interventions. CCT scheme was designed according to the social marketing principles to
influence the girls’ schooling behavior. The scheme was developed based on an
understanding of the target consumers’ needs and was piloted in eight schools before it was
scaled-up. Moreover, the marketing mix elements were considered.