As outlined in the Malawi National Social Support Programme (MNSSP II), the Government of Malawi is deeply committed to strengthening the provision of social support and social protection for the poorest and most vulnerable in society.

The SCTP is designed to support 10% of the ultra-poor and labour constrained in each of the 28 Districts in Malawi. Currently, this 10% is established by a combination of Proxy Means Test (PMT) and community targeting (Community Social Support Committees help establish beneficiaries most in need during Community Meetings, based on lists generated by the Unified Beneficiary Registry (UBR) at District-Council-level).

Current eligibility criteria:

Eligibility criteria for recipient households

Mtukula Pakhomo has defined a set of eligibility criteria to filter who qualifies to

participate in the Programme and reach the target group. An eligible household should meet the following criteria:

1. must be ultra-poor; and

2. must be labour-constrained

Direction of Policy Travel

Labour constrained households are households which have no ‘fit-for-work’ member or whose ratio of unfit-for-work to fit-for-work members is three (3:1) or higher. People are considered unfit for work if they are:

- Younger than 18 or older than 64 years old;

- Are in the 19-25 age bracket still attending school;

- Have a disability or suffer from a chronic illness regardless of their age.

Ultra-poor households are determined through their Proxy Means Testing (PMT) score, and have the following characteristics:

- The household has on average only one meal per day; and/or

- The household survives from begging; and/or · The household is undernourished; and/or · The household does not possess any valuable assets; and/or · The household does not receive any monetary help, food, or gifts from others.

Households with children aged between 6-24 are entitled to a small educational bonus to help support school attendance.

Eligible households must be ranked within the programme’s 10% cut-off point of a selected geographical area (per district). The 10% rate is a flat rate applied across Districts irrespective of the District poverty level.

.Direction of Policy Travel

While the above information presents current programme scope, as outlined in President Lazarus Chakwera's first State of the Nation Address, the intention is to continue expanding the programme’s capacity and impact, particularly through targeting scale-up from the poorest 10% to the poorest 15%. This commitment to impact expansion was also reflected in the increase to Cash Transfer value amounts from an average of MWK7,000 to MWK9,000 in July 2020.

2022 Targeting update:

The programme is about to start two major activities under targeting:

Retargeting e.g reselection of beneficiaries, after which coverage is expected to increase to 348,774 households (about 9% of the country’s household population).

Categorical targeting pilot

A pilot of a different, more simplified targeting approach is due to be conducted in Thyolo District. The approach will be that of “categorical targeting”, using simple categorical target groups rather than relying on PMT. The categorical target groups being tested are:

Households including individuals under 5 years of age

The elderly, above 70 years of age

Pregnant and lactating women