By James Ngalande
Dowa, Mana: A 37 year old lady, Mary Makina from Mtsateni village in the area of Traditional Authority (TA) Mkukula in Dowa district has applauded government’s Social Cash Transfer Programme (SCTP) saying it has relieved her from financial hiccups by providing her with a capital to start a business.
The programme locally known as Mtukula Pakhomo, targets ultra poor labour constrained households which receive money on a monthly basis, to allow them shoulder economic risks in their daily lives.
Makina said that the programme has improved her life as she now runs a business, and supports her family with basic necessities, a thing she could previously only dream of.
She said that, “Through Mtukula Pakhomo, I started selling tomatoes and frying chips. This has changed my life because I am able to bring food on the table for my family. I have managed to buy almost 20 iron sheets for roofing our house.”
Makina said apart from this, she has bought two goats for rearing to sustain her financial independence.
Dowa District Social Care Officer, Lucky Gama said that was grateful to see the positive impact the programme was bringing into the district.
He said that the mandate of the programme which was reducing poverty and hunger, increase school enrollment, and improve health, nutrition and well being of vulnerable children was being fulfilled.
“Many beneficiaries who enrolled in the program are now sustaining their lives through the money they receive.
“Some have started businesses, some have managed to build good houses roofed with iron sheets, some have started livestock farming which is a source of income generating activities for their families,” Gama said.
The Social cash transfer is the government programme under Malawi Social Action Fund 4 (MASAF 4) that seeks to improve household resilience to the economical challenges.
In Dowa district 17, 600 households are on the programme.