The Cooperating Partners consider Social Protection as a cost efficient way to invest in the livelihoods of the most vulnerable households in the country and a key strategy for Zambia in addressing extreme poverty. Independent evaluations of the cash transfer programme have shown repeatedly that the programme is highly effective in alleviating the poverty of Zambia’s most vulnerable people.
The cash transfer is implemented in some of the remotest parts of the country; as such the availability of transport will help the Ministry to reach the poorest people. This is critical.
The British Government, alongside the Governments of Finland, Sweden and the Republic of Ireland, today handed 28 motor vehicles to the Ministry of Community Development to be used in the implementation of the Social Cash Transfer programme in Zambia.
Mr Lawson-McDowall said the provision of vehicles is part of the UK’s and other partners’ support to the Government of Zambia’s efforts towards eradicating extreme poverty through social cash transfers.
He commended the Government of Zambia for scaling up the reach of social cash transfer programme from 19 districts in 2014 to 78 in 2016, and increasing funding by 100% from K250m to K552m in 2017. He said the UK and other partners will contribute K217m as financial aid for transfers and administration.
The Zambia Social Cash Transfer Programme provides Social Cash Transfers (SCT) to extremely poor and vulnerable households to improve their standard of living. The Programme is implemented by the Government of Zambia (GRZ) through the Ministry of Community Development and Social Welfare (MCDSW). The programme is jointly funded by the GRZ, the UK Government through DFID, Irish Aid (IA), Embassy of Finland and Embassy of Sweden. The overarching goal of the Social Cash Transfer is to reduce poverty and intergenerational poverty in the districts covered by the programme. Since 2014, GRZ has been scaling up the programme with an additional 28 districts coming on board in 2016. The government has increased its funding to the programme significantly which has allowed the programme to expand from 61,000 recipients in 2013 to over 242,000 recipients by end of 2016. The UK Government will spend £33.8m over the next five years to support the nationwide roll out of Zambia’s cash transfer programme and transfer it fully to Government ownership. The programme provides payments of 70 Zambian kwacha (roughly £5) a month to households headed by elderly or disabled people, with large numbers of dependent children (often AIDS orphans). Households use the money to buy more and better food; and invest in their children, homes, and in more productive farming and small businesses. The households are identified by the community, verified by district authorities, and their status is reassessed every 3 years. The cash transfer programme has grown from being a small donor-funded pilot in a few districts to a predominantly government run and funded programme in 78 districts.
The UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) procured 28 (4x4) Toyota Land Cruisers.
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