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Zimbabwe’s Harmonized Social Cash Transfer Programme: impacts on productive activities and labour allocation











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    Document
    Evaluating local general equilibrium impacts of Zimbabwe’s Harmonized Social Cash Transfer Programme (HSCT) 2014
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    The Harmonized Social Cash Transfer (HSCT) is an unconditional cash transfer introduced in 2011 by the Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare (MPSLSW) in order to strengthen the purchasing power of ultra-poor households who are labour constrained through cash transfers. The objectives of the programme include enabling recipient households to increase consumption above the poverty line, reduce the number of ultra-poor households and help beneficiaries avoid risky coping strategies such as child labour and early marriage. Moreover, the programme is expected to lead to improved nutritional status, health and education outcomes, as well as a reduction in violence. As of March 2014, 55 509 households in 20 districts had been enrolled, covering 247 645 individuals. Local economy-wide impact evaluation (LEWIE) simulation methods are used to assess the likely impacts of cash transfers on the local economy. When the Harmonized Social Cash Transfer programme gives money to benefic iary households, they spend it, buying goods and services. As this cash swirls around within wards and districts, it creates benefits for non-recipient households as well who may provide the goods and services purchased by beneficiary households. This study finds that the Zimbabwe HSCT generates a total income multiplier of 1.73 in nominal terms with a confidence interval of 1.42 to 2.00. Each dollar of transfer has the potential to generate 1.73 dollars of total income within the project area.
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    Booklet
    Productive Impacts of the Malawi Social Cash Transfer Programme 2015
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    Cash transfer programmes have become an important tool for social protection and poverty reduction strategies in low- and middle-income countries. An increasing number of African governments have launched such programmes in the past ten years, especially to provide assistance to households caring for orphans and vulnerable children or to labour-constrained households. Cash transfer programmes in African countries have tended to be unconditional (i.e. regular and predictable transfers of money ar e given directly to beneficiary households without conditions or labour requirements) rather than conditional (i.e. recipients are required to meet certain conditions such as using basic health services or sending their children to school), which is more common in Latin America. Most of these programmes seek to reduce poverty and vulnerability by improving food consumption, school attendance, and nutritional and health status. The Malawi Social Cash Transfer (SCT) programme was initiated in 20 06 in the pilot district of Mchinji, providing cash grants to ultra-poor households without any able-bodied adult household members (‘labour-constrained’ households). The objectives of the programme include reducing poverty and hunger in vulnerable households and increasing school enrolment. A rigorous impact evaluation of the pilot in Mchinji district was designed and implemented during the pilot phase in 2007/08. Results from this initial evaluation indicated strong positive impacts of the pil ot on household food security, children’s schooling, health, and household possession of productive assets (Miller et al., 2010). The Government of Malawi (GoM) has gradually expanded the SCT to six additional districts across the country (Chitipa, Likoma, Machinga, Mangochi, Phalombe, and Salima), although it only operates at full scale in Likoma and Mchinji. The SCT is currently operational in seven districts and reaches over 30,000 ultra-poor and labour-constrained households and approximatel y 103,000 individuals. The current expansion of the SCT presents an important opportunity to evaluate the adjusted programme with a larger sample size across several districts.
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    Book (stand-alone)
    The household- and individual-level economic impacts of cash transfer programmes in Sub-Saharan Africa 2017
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    This report synthesizes the analysis and findings of a set of seven country impact evaluation studies that explore the impact of cash transfer programmes on household economic decision-making, productive activities and labour allocation in sub-Saharan Africa. The seven countries are Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Results from seven recently completed rigorous impact evaluations of government-run unconditional social cash transfer programmes in sub-Saharan Africa s how that these programmes have significant positive impacts on the livelihoods of beneficiary households. In Zambia, the Child Grant programme had large and positive impacts across an array of income generating activities. The impact of the programmes in Ethiopia, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi and Zimbabwe were more selective in nature, while the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty programme in Ghana had fewer direct impacts on productive activities, and more on various dimensions of risk management .

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