About 1, 500 beneficiaries of cash transfer in Murang’a County are targeted for a financial literacy programme being supported by the government in partnership with World Bank.
The beneficiaries are drawn from parts of Kiharu and Maragua Constituencies, believed to have high rates of poverty.
The department of social protection with officers from World Bank has rolled out the programme to educate beneficiaries of cash transfer in selected counties on how to prudently use their monthly stipends.
The exercise of equipping the beneficiaries with financial skills is being done under a Kenya Social and Economic Inclusion Programme which will run for five years.
The Sh32 billion programme is aimed at changing perception of beneficiries to enable them use part of the given money to invest in small scale projects.
The Head of Social Assistances Unit at the Department of Social Protection, John Gachigi said the pilot areas of the project include Murang’a, Kitui and Taita Taveta counties, adding that at the end of the project more than 7,500 beneficiaries will be incorporated into programme.
Gachigi said the World Bank has given the government a loan of Sh25 billion while the remaining Sh7 billion will be a grant from DFID.
“After the piloting, the programme will be rolled out to all other beneficiaries countrywide to equip them with skills, which will enable them have a change of mind set on the stipend given by the government.
Our aim is to tell the beneficiaries start small scale enterprises, which will enable them to generate income and avoid total dependency on the little money given by the government,” added Gachigi, while paying courtesy call to the County Commissioner (CC), Mohammed Barre on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, after training the beneficiaries will be given a top up amount to assist them invest in small scale enterprises.
The three cash transfer programmes for the older persons, orphans and those living with severe disabilities are supporting 1.23 million households in the country.
Gachigi said the migration from card payment to Bank account payment will assist the beneficiaries to start saving part of the money, adding that they are working with the other relevant government agencies to improve social welfare for the vulnerable groups.
At the same time, the social protection official said the government was in the process of enrolling the beneficiaries with NHIF, saying the move will help the recipients to get free treatment.
On his part, the CC underscored the need to equip cash transfer beneficiaries with financial skills.
Barre noted that some of the benefices usually ended up squandering the given money, since they lacked requisite skills on how to use the little funds.
By Bernard Munyao