Midline Survey Evaluation of the Malawi Social Cash Transfer Program / Baseline Survey Evaluation of Social Protection for Gender Equality and Resilience Program

Malawi cash transfers

More than 20% of the Malawi population lives in extreme poverty. Poverty and inequality disproportionately affect women and children, narrowing their access to social services and economic opportunities. According to national statistics, women head over 75% of the households living in poverty, and the incidence of multidimensional poverty among children is 60.5%. 

Within this context, the Malawi Social Cash Transfer Program (MSCTP) has been providing monthly unconditional cash grants to ultra-poor and "labor-constrained" households since 2006, when the program was initiated in the pilot district of Mchinji with support from the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

The MSCTP is one of the largest cash transfer programs in Africa, supporting 10% of the population with an average of Malawian kwacha (MK) 9,000 per month (approximately USD 5.00) and functioning as a key pillar in the country’s social protection strategy. 

Through this project AIR is engaged in two separate studies:

  • The first is a follow-up of the long-term impact evaluation of the MSCTP to assess its effect on participants and to understand what happens to households that exit the program. 
  • The second study is to assess the impact of a series of complementary interventions through economic empowerment activities and access to social services on MSCTP households through the Social Protection for Gender Equality and Resilience (SP-GEAR) program in three separate districts. AIR assesses the additional impact, if any, of complementary services to households that directly address their vulnerabilities and risks.