Some 8,300 children under the age of three are benefiting from a Sh800 bi-monthly, cash transfer programme being piloted in three counties under Universal Child Benefit .
This initiative which aims to cushion children from adverse effects of poverty is a collaboration between the Ministry of Labour and Social Protection and UNICEF – in partnership with WFP and Save the Children.
This Ksh80 million program is expected run for 12 months in eight selected Locations in three counties in Kenya.
The program has been piloted in Kisumu, Kajiado and Embu counties with 8,300 children eligible for UCB already registered.
This pilot program is targeting vulnerable families with an aim of helping the children escape malnutrition and ill health. The cash transfers are channeled bi-monthly through a female care giver via mobile phone.
The result of the program will inform long term roll out plan. The UCB scheme aims at reaching all children by the year 2030.
Through this program the caregivers are given training on how to bring up an all-round child, proper nutrition, child protection and disability-and gender-sensitive complimentary services. Also they learn how to rise their children within the law.
Specifically, the pilot Universal Child Benefits program aims to cushion children and their families from the lasting socio-economic impacts of the Covid-19 crisis, generate lessons for the introduction of a long-term UCB, and strengthening advocacy efforts and visibility for the UCB.
Data indicates that, at least 42 per cent of under 18 are monetary poor, while 52.5 per cent are multi-dimensionally poor.