Reviewing the impact of Social Protection

The ILO, Government ministries, UN Partners, Donors, civil society and media embark on a Joint Annual Review to assess the impacts of Social Protection programmes in Zambia.

News | Lusaka | 13 August 2019
The Ministry of Community Development and Social Services (MCDSS), as the lead in the Social Protection Sector, with support from the International Labour Organization, United Nations Children’s Fund and World Bank and other line ministries undertook field visits in June, 2019, to familiarise themselves with progress made in the implementation of the social protection programmes in various parts of Zambia. During the field visits, implementation progress of social protection programmes including: Social Cash Transfer (SCT), Supporting Women’s Livelihood (SWL), Keeping Girls’ in School, Public Welfare Assistance Schemes, amongst others, were monitored through discussions with provincial, district and other officers from non-governmental and faith based organizations. To corroborate findings from implementing officers, focus group discussions were also held with potential and actual beneficiaries of the numerous programmes.

A number of beneficiaries spoken to, provided an account of some of the positive changes drawn from the social protection programmes. For example, a sixty-year-old beneficiary of the SCT, Ms. Margaret Kapaso, a farmer, who lives with her grandchildren aged 10, 8 and 4 years in Kawambwa district narrated how the SCT programme payments enabled her to buy maize seeds and fertilizer. As her ¬first harvest was more than what was needed for home consumption, she sold part of the surplus yield at the local market. This brought the much needed additional income that was used to buy school requirements for her grandchildren.

Within the same community, Given Chibwe is a widow raising 7 children in Mabumba village.
In 2016, MCDSS placed me in a village banking group where I was able to access a loan worth K950 to invest in a business. I was also provided with basic skills on how to manage my business and make profits”, she explained.

As a mother, it pained me to see that I couldn’t afford more than one meal for my children. Now am able to provide three meals and educate my children. I recently bought land from the Chief”, she proudly exclaimed.
The village bank initiative is supported by MCDSS with the aim of helping vulnerable but viable rural women to engage in income generating activities.

The International Labour Organization working with other United Nations Agencies and funded by Ireland, Finland, DFID and Sweden has been supporting enhanced coordination and integrated delivery of social protection programmes through the development of the Integrated Framework for Basic Social Protection Programmes (IFBSPP). Once operationalized, the framework will be instrumental in contributing towards more effective and efficient programmes.