LEAP Payment Begins

Nana Oye Lithur
The Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection has begun the sixth disbursement of funds to over 77,006 beneficiaries on the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) programme.

The distribution -both electronic and manual- being implemented by the Department of the Social Welfare, targets orphans and vulnerable children, the aged- 65 years and above, without any support and persons with severe disability in all 10 regions of the country.

The Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Nana Oye Lithur, the British High Commissioner to Ghana, Jon Benjamin, and a former Brazilian Minister for Social Protection as well as officials of the Department of Social Welfare (DSW) monitored the disbursement.

The spot checks and monitoring were to ensure the effectiveness of disbursements, they were also meant to see and listen to testimonies of beneficiaries, whose lives have been transformed by the LEAP programme.

A news release signed by the ministry’s Public Relations Officer, Adiza Ofori-Adu, said the field spot checks would also be used to gather information from the regional social welfare officers, district social welfare officers, payment service providers, community LEAP implementation committees (CLIC) members and LEAP beneficiaries to assess progress of the programme and to address concerns in the field.

It would complement the monitoring and supervisory work being carried out by regional and district social welfare officers.

The LEAP programme has yielded a lot of benefits which include the boosting of the productivity of beneficiary households, larger enrolment of children in schools and overall contentment of the aged and persons with disability.

The district social welfare officers and statistical officers from 100 districts have been trained to target additional 50,000 beneficiary households to be enrolled onto the programme for 2015.

Currently, the number of beneficiaries is expected to reach one 100,000 beneficiary households by next month, December, 2014.

Ghana’s LEAP programme is sponsored by the government of Ghana, with support from development partners such as the Department for International Development (DFID), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the World Bank.

The support is through capacity building trainings, engagement of technical assistance, procurement of logistics such as computers, printers and vehicles.

By Jamila Akweley Okertchiri

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