The Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) Programme, will commence its 43rd payment cycle from 1st to 5th August, 2016.
A total of 147,881 beneficiary households in 187 districts will be paid their LEAP grants, a statement from the LEAP Secretariat at the Gender Ministry has said.
During the payment period which covers 2 months; one eligible household member will receive GHS 64.00, a two eligible member household receives GHS 76.00, while a three eligible member household will receive GHS 88.00 and four or more eligible member household will receive GHS106.00. These payments cover the months of May and June, 2016.
This 43rd cycle payment will include 192 households from the 'alleged witches camps' in Gushiegu in the Northern region and the Mampong Babies Home in Ashanti region. This group of beneficiaries fall under the specialised category for automatic inclusion onto the LEAP Programme. The inclusion of the specialised category of beneficiaries is in line with the Programme's objective to reduce the plight of the vulnerable and marginalized in the society.
All the beneficiaries will be paid electronically using the e-zwich platform of the Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems (GhIPSS). This payment platform uses biometric fingerprint to verify beneficiaries before payment.
The LEAP Programme is making impact on the lives of its target group: orphans and vulnerable children, elderly above 65 years, and persons with severe disability without productive capacity. An independent research conducted by Centre for Democratic Development (CDD), a leading civil society organization, between 2014 and 2015, indicates that LEAP contributed to 12% increase in school enrollment of children of school going age. Other findings from the research include: children in LEAP households are more motivated to attend school; Improved access to health care through NHIS for LEAP beneficiaries, 65% of LEAP households reported an increase in food security for the children, 62% of beneficiary are able to purchase fertilizers and 63% of LEAP households have invested their accumulated grants savings into economic activities in their communities.
The findings from the CDD research corroborated the 2012 findings from the impact assessment conducted by ISSER and North Carolina University of USA in 2012. Another round of impact evaluation of the Programme is being conducted by the Institute of Statistical Social and Economic Research (ISSER) of the University of Ghana.
By the LEAP Programme design all LEAP beneficiaries are to be registered on the National Health Insurance Scheme free-of-charge to improve access to health care for the extremely poor, vulnerable and excluded.
In line with this, the LEAP Programme in collaboration with the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) is embarking on a nation-wide registration of new LEAP beneficiaries who have not yet acquired the National Health Insurance card. The number of beneficiary household members to be registered in this exercise is 214,067 members.