Initiatives to improve the livelihoods of rural populations in Malawi are registering positive results and offer an optimistic view of bailing many people out of poverty, the World Bank has said.
Country Manager for the bank in Malawi, Greg Toulmin said this Monday in Fisimulipe Village in Dedza when he visited some of the rural livelihoods activities government is implementing through the Malawi National Social Support Programme (NSSP).
Through NSSP, government with support from the bank is reaching out to rural communities with five economic empowering program areas namely; social cash transfer (SCT), public works (PW), school meals program (SMP), village savings and loans (VSL), and microfinance.
“It is very encouraging to us (the bank) to see how these programs are transforming the lives of rural households,” said Toulmin as he visited some of the families in group village Kaboola, Traditional Authority (TA) Kamenyagwaza in the district.
“What I see are families using the resources they receive to improve their food security, nutrition and health, make their homes decent by building new houses and send their children to school with necessary support.”
Toulmin pointed out it is the goal of the bank to help the Malawi government in building resilient families that can help themselves even in seasons of failed rains for growing crops.
“These programs are about creating more certainty to the people so that they can begin to plan for a long-term future and what they really want to do with their lives,” he said.
Toulmin then called on all development partnership to work and support Malawi with a coherent approach agreed by government and various implementing agencies to ensure that resources are used to the best effect.
Over 19,000 and 15,000 households in Dedza are beneficiaries of the social cash transfer and public works programmes respectively.
Namatcheya Dyson, 65, is one of the beneficiaries the World Bank chief in the country paid a visit.
“With the money I get from social cash transfer, I am managing to send my three grandchildren to school and I have a decent home,” said Dyson outside her home in Fisimulipe Village.
District Commissioner for Dedza Ellis Tembo said the formation of community savings and investment promotion (Comsip) groups is also helping beneficiaries to engage in various enterprises using their own skills and abilities.
“The formation of these groups is empowering the people to capitalize on untapped resources available in the district,” Tembo said.
The World Bank is one of the four funding sources for the NSSP under the Local Development Funds which gets the resources through the Malawi Social Action Fund (Masaf) V. The Bank is providing $107 million.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :