Unravelling the Wider Benefits of Social Pensions: Secondary Beneficiaries of the Older Persons Cash Transfer Program in the Slums of Nairobi
Chepngeno-Langat, Gloria et al
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A growing number of low and middle income countries have introduced social pension programs for older people. Research has highlighted that the impact of such programs can extend beyond the primary recipient when funds are shared. It less clear the extent to which such redistribution persists in the lowest resource settings. Using data from a survey conducted in 2016, this paper examines how recipients of the Kenyan Older Persons Cash Transfer Program (OPCTP) living in two slum communities in Nairobi reallocate their social pension by examining the characteristics of older people who are more likely to share their cash and identifying secondary beneficiaries. Findings suggest that 40% of beneficiaries re-allocate some or all of the cash received. The majority of secondary beneficiaries are either grandchildren or children of the primary beneficiary. Overall, a higher proportion of the total cash is shared with secondary beneficiaries living in rural Kenya, as compared to those living in the same household. This highlights the role played by older people, even the most vulnerable, in providing support to wider kin networks; reinforcing the argument that investing in social pensions has much broader potential societal impact than the intended aims of reducing recipient household poverty. By enhancing economic opportunities and investments in human capital more broadly, societies that invest in social pension programs may improve the overall living conditions and experiences of ageing in their countries at a critical moment of global population ageing.
CitationGloria Chepngeno-Langat, Nele van der Wielen, Maria Evandrou, Jane Falkingham, Unravelling the wider benefits of social pensions: Secondary beneficiaries of the older persons cash transfer program in the slums of Nairobi, Journal of Aging Studies, Volume 51, 2019, 100818, ISSN 0890-4065, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jaging.2019.100818
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