We check in with people at each stage of the cash transfer process to see how things are going. Take a look at some of their stories as they appear here in real-time.
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55000 KES ($535 USD)
access_time almost 4 years ago
How is your life different than it would have been if you never received the transfer?
I did not have any livestock in my homestead before the coming of GiveDirectly. However, after getting my transfer, I am now boasting of owning a pair of oxen and some goats. With the pair of oxen, I am assured of ploughing my farm timely and I am expecting to plough my whole acreage thus getting a good harvest. I also enrolled to a tailoring course through this money. I paid for the tuition fee and also acquired a new sewing machine that will enable me to start my own tailoring shop. This will be a source of income to me.
In your opinion, what does GiveDirectly do well, and what does it not do well?
In my opinion, GiveDirectly came to save us from the poverty that had stricken our area and to improve our living standards by giving us the unconditional transfer. For sure, even accessing the very basic needs like shelter and food was a challenge. Through the coming of GiveDirectly, we have been able to build decent houses and owning livestock as additional assets to us. I do not see anything that GiveDirectly does not do well.
What did you spend your second transfer on?
I spent KES 15000 of the second transfer on purchasing new bedding for my family to sleep on comfortably. I bought a new mattress and a new bed since we were using the old traditional bed. Apart from this, I also spent the transfer on paying for my children's school fees for them continue with their studies without any interruptions concerning school fees. In addition to this, I did some shopping on household items that were lacking like chairs and utensils, as well as meeting some family basic needs such as foodstuffs and clothing.
55000 KES ($544 USD)
access_time almost 5 years ago
Describe the biggest difference in your daily life.
The biggest difference in my daily life is that the transfer has enabled me to buy a pair of oxen that I have desired to have for a long time. Previously I had no oxen and I had to hire from neighbors which was costly to me. Also, I could not manage to cultivate a bigger acreage which always led to food insecurity as it would not last us long. With the pair, I am assured of early cultivation and increase acreage for abundant yields.
Describe the moment when you received your money. How did you feel?
I was woken up by a message notification early in the morning. On checking to confirm its content, I could not hold back the joy that instantly filled my heart as I realized that the message was from GiveDirectly informing me that my first transfer was in my Mpesa account. I was greatly overjoyed on the thought that I would be able to enrol for training in tailoring.
What did you spend your first transfer on?
I spent part of my transfer on buying a pair of oxen to aid me in my farming purposes. Previously I was using tools that were inferior and tiresome such that I could not cultivate a bigger acreage. Hiring from neighbors was also costly to me due to financial constraints and this created the desire in me to have my own pair. Through the transfer, my desire has been fulfilled and the pair will enable me to increase the acreage of my arable land and to ensure that I do early and timely cultivation for maximum yields. In addition to this, I paid for my children's school fees for them to stay comfortable without being interrupted because of school fees. I also enrolled in a training institute so as to acquire skills that will make me be self-reliant. Due to this, I paid my tuition fees and I am now training as a tailor and I am hoping to open my own tailoring shop in the future.
access_time almost 5 years ago
What does receiving this money mean to you?
My biggest ambition is to start a tailoring shop with my husband but the biggest hindrance is lack of skills and capital. The motivation behind this dream is to achieve a stable source of income that will improve our livelihoods. Receiving this transfer therefore means, I will enroll in a dressmaking college and purchase all the equipment necessary for setting up the tailoring shop. Once I am equipped enough, I will teach my husband the same skills so that we can run the business together.
What is the happiest part of your day?
I spend the rest of my day in the field herding livestock. This is my daily routine and I get very little time to rest. It drains my energy since I have to keep on running in order to prevent them from getting into people's farms. However, when I get back home in the evening I sit with my family and we get time to bond. Besides this, I also get time to replenish my energy and I can say evening is the happiest part of my day.
What is the biggest hardship you've faced in your life?
My husband works as a casual labourer at a construction site and earns less than 3000 shillings a month. This is because the job is not stable as it is available seasonally. He is the sole breadwinner and I am a housewife who depends on him for everything. Life is quite difficult because the money he earns is not sufficient enough to care for a family of six. Sometimes we are forced to go without food when does not get any job. Besides, it is almost impossible to respond to medical needs and school fees for our children. In this regard, I can say financial constraint is my biggest hardship.