Haretha Hussein Mohamed, a 48-year-old single mother with 11 children, lives in Bambo village in Lafey sub-county, Mandera County. This area is known to have been severely impacted by recurring drought and interclan, resource-based conflict. Drought have significantly affected the women in the community, as they often bear the burden of fetching water for drinking and domestic use, as well as caring for their children and maintaining the households’ food preparations. The scarcity of water and resources has increased their workload, limiting their time for other productive activities.

Haretha has been a beneficiary of multi-purpose cash assistance since December 2023. Before she joined the programme, life had become very challenging, especially after she lost the only donkey she inherited from her husband. She used the donkey to earn a living by hawking firewood during the recent drought. In that difficult situation, she felt depressed, wondering where the next meal for her family would come from.

Things began to improve when Haretha was selected as one of the beneficiaries and received a first payment of 10,500 Kenya shillings (approximately USD 79).

I used part of the money to buy a donkey which I now use to hawk firewood. The donkey has helped us in transporting firewood from the local sources to the market which I earned additional income, as well as stocking of food to help my family cope with the shock of the recent drought

Haretha is confident that even after the cash assistance ends, she will be able to sustain providing essential needs for her family through the proceeds of her firewood business, made possible by the cash transfer as her start-up capital.

 “I am so thankful for the timely support. It empowered me to make a decision about my life in spending money intended for my most urgent priorities to feed my children”.

Haretha’s story is a testament to the positive impact of multi-purpose cash, in providing a chance for affected communities to recover and build resilience. 

This initiative is funded by the United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) and implemented by IOM in partnership with the Rural Agency for Community Development and Assistance (RACIDA).

SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
SDG 13 - Climate Action