Kenya is on the brink of implementing an Enhanced Single Registry (ESR) to identify needy households in all of the country’s 47 counties. The ESR will be launched in December 2023 and will generate integrated and harmonized data that will aid the government and other stakeholders in identifying beneficiaries of social protection programs, including the Inua Jamii cash transfer scheme.

Being able to identify persons that are needy has always remained to be a thorn in the country. This is moreso because, there are lots of factors that come into play whenever the exercise is undertaken. For example, whenever there are monetary benefits, leaders would give preferance to certain individuals regardless whether they are needy or not.

The ESR will offer real-time data to enhance the accuracy of information used by government agencies and development partners. Furthermore, the registry will consolidate information from separate management information systems for cash transfer programs which are currently operated independently by different departments and ministries.

The registry will expand to include potential social protection beneficiaries and form links with other social protection system components such as the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF), National Social Security Fund, and public-private social assistance programs.

In developing social registries, consideration must be given to Kenya’s social protection context and landscape. Structures that support social registries, including legal systems, citizen interface, and user programs, should also be put in place.

The ESR is part of the Kenya Social and Economic Inclusion Project (KSEIP), which strengthens the safety net delivery system and promotes a comprehensive social protection system that extends beyond cash transfers. The KSEIP will enhance social and economic inclusion services and shock-responsive safety nets for poor and vulnerable households.

The Single Registry System aims to promote efficient administration of social protection programs in line with the National Social Protection Policy and Vision 2030. The ESR will provide information on beneficiaries of cash transfer programs, such as Inua Jamii, Nutrition Improvement through Cash transfers and Health Education (NICHE), and the Hunger Safety Net Program.

The ESR will promote efficient delivery of social protection programs and support the growth of social protection measures aimed at cushioning vulnerable populations. With 1,072,226 beneficiaries currently enrolled in Inua Jamii programs, the government aims to provide a safety net for poor and vulnerable households through an integrated and efficient social protection system. The ESR will play a significant role in achieving this objective.