The European Union (EU) ambassador for Kenya, Simon Mordue, has signed a €5 million grant that will enable a consortium of NGOs to provide cash transfers to 80,000 vulnerable Kenyans who have lost their income sources due to the Covid-19 pandemic. An estimated 30 percent of Kenyans living in Nairobi’s informal settlements are experiencing severe hunger as a result of the pandemic, hence the need for the project which will improve food security by covering 50 percent of recipients’ food needs, and other essential costs such as soap, water, rent, and mobile phone credit.
Mordue stated, ‘The EU is standing with Kenya during this difficult time, providing a lifeline through cash transfers for the worst affected people in Nairobi’s urban informal settlements, including women, the elderly and persons with disabilities’.
The organisations that will be partnering with EU for the cash transfer include Oxfam in Kenya, the Kenyan Red Cross Society (KRCS), Concern Worldwide (CW), ACTED, IMPACT, the Centre for Rights Education and Awareness (CREA), and the Wangu Kanja Foundation (WKF).
The Humanitarian Director of Oxfam in Kenya, Mat Cousins, noted, ‘By mobilising resources quickly, the [EU] has shown its commitment to working in partnership with the people of Kenya, government authorities, civil society, and affected communities. This whole society approach will save lives’.
The organisations will provide 20,000 households living in the Kibera, Korogocho, Mathare, Soweto, Majengo, Gitare, Marigo, Gatina Lunga Lunga, Kayole and Mukuru informal settlements of Nairobi with monthly cash transfers for three months, beginning in June. The direct cash transfers through Mpesa, a mobile money transfer service, will also complement the Ministry of Labour’s Inua Jamii programme which has enrolled 11,250 households who are receiving KES2,000 per month.
It was observed that there has been a rise in the cases of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) as a result of the lockdown. The organisations will provide cash assistance to approximately 1,035 survivors of SGBV, identified by local partners, alongside SGBV prevention and response measures. The selection will be made through the Nyumba Kumi system, subject to independent verification by the KRCS with additional checks carried out by the partners.
A transparent complaints and feedback mechanism has been set up, and rigorous monitoring of the use and impact of the cash transfers on households and markets will be carried out regularly and shared with key stakeholders, including the Government of Kenya, the EU, and other development partners.
Source: CNBC Africa
Photo source: Thijs ter Haar