The difference a little cash can make…

March was a busy but fulfilling month for the coordinators of Riverkids’ Direct Cash Aid. Under the programme, we give a direct cash donation to families who meet specific criteria that we set, so that these families are empowered to make their own spending decisions.

The donation empowers families and reduces the risk of dropout from our programmes. To qualify, the families have to consistently meet defined programme requirements every month, as confirmed through frequent checks by our social workers. Our strict criteria and monitoring ensures that children receive the support and care they need to grow and obtain an education.

In March, we completed the criteria checklist for 15 Crisis Families. At the same time, we conducted home visits to the Crisis Families to gain an understanding of their living standards, including food, domestic violence, finances and debt.

While some families were not available due to their busy working schedules, our programme coordinators visited a total of 16 families, comprising five from Compassion House, six from Samaki, two from Blum and three from Psar Touch. Our home visits have turned up a varying range of situations in the 16 families.

Many of the families are earning their own income, using the Direct Cash Aid to supplement their finances and provide the family with a better life. With this money, most of them are able to afford enough food and children’s education. Also, many of the families have only low to no debt, with some exceptions that we are working together with.

We are in the midst of discussions to review the continuation of the Direct Cash Aid programme for Crisis Families, but based on the heartening results of the home visits, we would like to thank you for your continued support for Riverkids.

We are happy to report that we also provided incentives for two Graduated and two Upgraded families this month. Working together with social workers and the programme manager, we facilitated the process of delivering daily necessities and household appliances to the four families. Besides providing the Crisis Families with some monetary relief, the incentives are a way of encouraging the Crisis Families for their progress in the programme. We hope to be able to report more of such joyous occasions with you in the near future!

In addition to conducting the home visits, completing the checklist, and providing incentives to families, our coordinators also accomplished other tasks for the Direct Cash Aid programme. These include updating the spreadsheet, Matching Saving component, and name list for the Get Ready Boys and Get Ready Girls programme; informing families of health check at Samaki, Compassion, Phsar Touch and Blum; having a meeting to review the continuation of the Direct Cash Aid programme for Crisis Families; and providing disbursement to Get Ready and Crisis Families.

March has, no doubt, been an eventful month for us, and we look forward to continuing our efforts towards preventing abuse and trafficking within the community.

Please refer to the detailed report here: SW April 2015