Determinants of Effective Utilization of Cash Transfer for Orphans and Vulnerable Children Caregivers in Kenya: a Case of Tigania West,meru County
Kenya like other developing countries has had its share of social economic challenges one of them being the growing number of orphans and vulnerable children in the society due to HIV/AIDS, the breakdown of the traditional family structures, change in family values among others. The government and its partners, the donors has been providing social assistance to extremely poor households living with orphans and vulnerable children through a cash transfer programme with clearly stipulated objectives with the caregiver in the household expected to utilize the cash stipend to promote their human capital development. The purpose of the study was to investigate the determinants of the effective utilization of cash transfer for orphans and vulnerable children by caregivers in Tigania West Sub-County which has 1320 beneficiaries in the programme. The study was guided by four objectives namely; To establish the extent to which the level of education of caregivers determined effective utilization of cash transfer grants for orphans and vulnerable children in Tigania West, To examine the effect of the size of the household on effective utilization of cash transfer for orphans and vulnerable children in Tigania West, To investigate the extent to which the gender of caregivers determine effective utilization of cash transfer grants for orphans and vulnerable children in Tigania West and to explore the extent to which complementary services determine effective utilization of cash transfer grants for orphans and vulnerable children in Tigania West. A descriptive survey research design was used where data was collected directly from the beneficiaries of the programme across three locations through questionnaires, observation and interview schedules. The 1320 beneficiary households formed the target population. Purposive sampling was employed in the first instance followed by proportional quota sampling. Finally, descriptive statistics were used to analyze data with help of Statistical Package for Social Scientists Program (SPSS) and presentation done in tables, frequencies and percentages. In addition, a few test statistics were performed on the data through chi-square. The study had a response return rate of 89%. The findings of the study revealed that the gender of the caregiver, the size of the household and the quality and availability of complimentary services were strong determinants in the effective utilization of the cash transfer. However, the level of education of the caregiver was not a determinant in the effective utilization of the cash transfer since most of the caregivers were illiterate. The study established most of the caregivers having experienced challenges in the uptake of civil registration as a complimentary service and were merely motivated by the programme objectives. The study recommends due consideration of the size of household in the design of the cash transfer programme to promote effective utilization of cash transfer. Additionally, it recommends a limited entrepreneurial approach rather than mere handouts in the cash transfer to reduce dependency. Further, a recommendation of a gender based approach has been made considering the dominance of female as caregivers in the programme in order to enhance the effectiveness of the design and implementation of the programme.
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