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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Describe the biggest difference in your daily life.
With help from GiveDirectly, I was able to buy two sacks of maize for our consumption. I am glad since it will last us for some months before I start buying them again daily. Having this stock of maize has enabled me to have a rest hence I no longer overwork myself like before. This is because I am certain that my family will not sleep hungry if I do not make any money at the end of the day. Having enough rest and some time to spend with my family daily is the biggest difference in my daily life.
Describe the moment when you received your money. How did you feel?
I was woken up by my wife after she heard of an incoming message on my phone. Since we knew that GiveDirectly will be sending us the money at night, we decided to read the message. My heart was filled with happiness as I read the message loudly to my wife. As a way of celebrating the news with my family, we bought bread on that particular morning. I knew that my life would finally transform into a better one.
What did you spend your first transfer on?
When I received my first transfer, I spent some amount to build a house for my family. I bought some building materials majorly 20 pieces of iron sheets, nails, timber, building poles and also paid a mason full of constructing the house. I settled on this so that whenever I have a visitor, I will not be requesting my neighbors to help me accommodate them at night. As a way of starting a poultry keeping project, I bought 10 chicken and built a chicken coop using some of this money. My wife will be selling some eggs and use the money to buy some basic needs for my family. Also, I hired the services of a tractor for my land preparation and planting after buying hybrid maize seeds. I spent the remaining amount to buy two sacks of maize some new clothes and shoes for my family.
access_time 3 months ago
What does receiving this money mean to you?
For a long time I have had a hard time when hosting guests in my home due to lack of seats. My priority upon receiving my first transfer is to buy 4 sets of seats worth Kshs 10,000 (100usd) and 2 tables for Kshs 2000 (20usd). Actualizing this is going to boost my esteem and make me proud of my home.
I spend about 4 days in a week working as a casual in people's farms planting and weeding maize while sometimes fencing. I do this for lack of alternative source of income. But this is going to change from next month upon receiving my first cash transfer. I intend to invest in a poultry project for self employment. I expect my poultry house to cost Kshs 6,000 (60usd) and spend another Kshs 10,000 (100usd) to buy 20 chicken layers. Upon completion,my project is literally going to feed my family of 5 without having to rely on tedious manual jobs in the village.
What is the happiest part of your day?
I rely so much on manual jobs in the village to earn a living. I work so hard to make sure I earn as much dues out of tasks I am assigned. For most days it would be planting and wedding people's maize farms. Having worked since morning, I would call it a day in the afternoon around 2:00pm with at least Kshs 200 (2usd) in my pocket. This is the happiest part of my day. I pass by a nearby shop and walk back home with so much gusto knowing I have won my family another day against hunger.
What is the biggest hardship you've faced in your life?
Starvation! In my community maize planting season only occurs once a year. Being an ASAL area, there is a perennial drought for most parts of the year. As a result, harvesting low yields in my 0.5 acre piece of land is not sufficient to sustain my family needs till the next planting season the following year. This results in dire consequences like lack of food, clothing and inconsistent attendance of school for two of my children due to hunger. This is the biggest hardship I've faced in my life.