The BOTA Foundation: Innovative Asset Return – Tuition Assistance Grants

Project Overview

Project Title The BOTA Foundation: Innovative Asset Return – Tuition Assistance Grants
Project Number
Country Kazakhstan
Overall Project Value(EUR) More than 4 000 000
Project Start – Project End February 2, 2009–December 12, 2014
Project Status Closed

Funding and Implementing Organizations

Origin of Funding Other
Project Budget(EUR) 14000000
Implementing Organization / Consortium

• United States
• Switzerland
• Kazakhstan
• World Bank
• Save the Children

Contact / Team Leader / Project Team

Project Summary, Objectives and Results

Project Summary

In an unprecedented development venture $116 million of disputed assets were repatriated to Kazakhstan through programs targeting the country’s most vulnerable populations.

Three governments, the United States, Switzerland and Kazakhstan, and three organizations, IREX, the World Bank and Save the Children, worked together to establish the BOTA Foundation.

The Foundation represents a unique approach to asset return through the auspices of a local NGO. With international oversight and a board consisting of representatives of the countries that returned the assets, and independent Kazakhstanis, assurances were given to the public that the funds would be used for social programming for the poor in the more remote regions of Kazakhstan.

The BOTA Foundation consisted of three programs:

Conditional Cash Transfers (CCT): CCT offered financial incentives to encourage and enable households struggling below the poverty line to access services that will improve their children’s development and welfare.

Social Service Grants and Technical Assistance: Through financial and technical support to Kazakhstani NGOs, BOTA bolstered local organizations working on child welfare.

Tuition Assistance Grants (TAG): BOTA’s Tuition Assistance Program helped disadvantaged young people access higher education through means based scholarships.

Project Objectives

Goals of the BOTA program:

Transparently and effectively return $116 million to vulnerable populations in Kazakhstan

Improve the health, education, and social welfare of children and youth in the poorest regions of Kazakhstan

Foster comprehensive technical and human development in Kazakhstan to ensure the sustainability of the BOTA Foundation’s programs

Education Sector HE
Components of the Education Process Education Policy Advice & Development
Occupational Field Not applicable
Target Groups Learners (scholar, student, apprentice etc.)
Related Projects

The Tuition Assistance Grants targeted promising young people by adapting the proxy means test used for CCT beneficiary identification.

Students had to be admitted to a university in Kazakhstan in order to receive a scholarship and the financial assistance was accompanied by a program of training and skill-building as a way to pair knowledge gained in the classroom with practical experience.

In order to promote social cohesion and responsibility, all scholars also served as volunteers, providing assistance to organizations and causes to which they were drawn.

Ninety percent of grants’ beneficiaries were the first in their families to access higher education.

Project Results

Links and Materials

    Link to project relevant data