Tuko Pamoja (We’re in this together): Project; This is a 12 Months project implemented Jointly by Oxfam WASH and Gender Teams in Partnership with Local based Organisations in Mukuru and Korogocho informal settlements. The project objectives are :-
- To drive positive behavior change to prevent and contain the spread of Covid-19 and reduce deaths.
- To protect the lives and livelihoods of survivors of Sexual And Gender Based Violence.
The project uses an e-voucher system whereby selected beneficiaries receive water, soap, and dignity kits from select shop vendors in the community. Registered beneficiaries get a voucher code through SMS on their registered phone lines and are supposed to visit the vendor for redemption. This process has made it easier for the vendor and the beneficiary by being transparent and ensuring the vendors know who and what to give out.
Shadrack Mwema, a resident of Mukuru Kwa Reuben, was among the registered vendors in the TUKO PAMOJA PROJECT.
According to Shadrack ‘the beneficiaries appreciated the water distribution because most of the families can’t afford to fetch water for 20 shillings per day thus forcing them to use salty water for drinking and cooking. Some families would fetch water then they pay later on when they have money and this was a challenge since most of the residents depend on casual jobs thus taking too long to pay.”
He further mentioned that ‘’the system was transparent in that it enabled identified beneficiaries get a unique voucher code for water and so beneficiaries who were not targeted could not claim for water since one has to show his/her code before accessing the water.’’ He added “This system of issuing codes is unique and very transparent.”
With the system being new to the vendor, there were some limitations that were experienced which were system related and also beneficiary related. He mentioned that ‘’as a vendor one needs to be patient when the system experiences delay in responding to successful redemptions’’. Sometimes the beneficiaries would receive the messages and delete them without knowing and hence claim that they have not seen messages on their phone and thus they come to the vendor to assist them in resending messages to get a voucher code.
Apart from supporting the vulnerable community members, the system allows community-based structures and businesses to grow.
Shadrack also recommended that ‘’if there is another chance, I would like to be considered as a vendor for the next project. He added ‘’We urge the donors to include more households since the issue of access to safe drinking water is a challenge to a lot of families”.