The Africa Policy Dialogues (APD) on social protection in Kenya hosted by Partnership for African Social and Governance Research (PASGR) in collaboration with Africa Institute for Health and Development (AIHD) have developed a video on the state of social protection in Kenya.
The video reiterates the role of the Ministry of East African Community (EAC), Labour and Social Protection and the Social Protection Secretariat in addressing social protection in Kenya. According to these agencies “Social protection consists of programmes and policies that help address risk vulnerability and poverty”.
The four social protection interventions highlighted are the Hunger Safety Net Programme, and cash transfers to orphaned and vulnerable children, to older persons, and to those with severe disabilities. The key highlights of the video as follows.
- The number of households covered have increased and the amount allocated to social protection has increased since 2013. The number of households increased to 800,000 from 250,000 households.
- Some County Governments have initiated social protection interventions.
- Kwale has established a medical scheme for the elderly (60 years and older) through the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF).
- Kakamega supports pregnant mothers and babies from birth to 18 months with the support from UNICEF .
- Bomet offers a monthly stipend of Kshs 2,000 (about $20) to the elderly (those 70 years or older) and a medical scheme for them to access health services through NHIF.
- The social protection programmes have increased enrolment primary schools, improved food security and reduced household vulnerability.
- The challenges with the schemes are identification of beneficiaries, duplication of the interventions between county and the national governments, access to identified beneficiaries and inadequate funds to reach all those who require protection.
- Effectiveness of the social protection schemes is being enhanced through:
- Harmonization of targeting through a single registry to prevent double dipping, enhance coordination and synergy
- Partnerships with donors such as the World Bank, DFID and UNICEF.
- Formulation of social protection legislation at the national and county governments.
- Factors that hinder use of research evidence in policy making:
- Inappropriate packing of evidence
- Competing issues that policy makers have to take into consideration
- Misunderstanding between policy makers and researchers
To address these challenges and enhance use of research evidence for effective social protection interventions, this APD brought together key stakeholders in social protection who successfully identified challenges to the use of evidence, and have contributed ideas to the formulation of a national social protection legislation in Kenya.
Below, watch the entire video: