Frequently Asked Questions
The Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) Programme is one of the Government of Ghana’s (GOG) flagship Social Protection (SP) intervention which was designed in 2007. Programme implementation commenced in 2008. LEAP is a Cash Transfer Programme (CTP) with the intention to empower the extremely poor population to ‘leap’ out of extreme poverty. The Programme is under the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection (MoGCSP) and administered by the LEAP Management Secretariat (LMS). The Ministry collaborate with other agencies (governmental/non-governmental) and development partners in the implementation of the programme.
- According to Ghana Living Standard Survey seven (GLSS7) of the Ghana Statistical Service (2016/2017), the extremely poor population stands at 2.4 million people representing 8.2% of Ghana’s population.
- LEAP is currently covering over 1.4million individuals (remaining 1 million)
- LEAP is yet to cover all extreme poor households in Ghana (2.4 million)
The broad objective of the LEAP Programme is to reduce poverty by smoothing consumption and promoting human capital development among extremely poor households. It is expected that the provision of LEAP cash grant and the promotion of access to social services and opportunities for these extremely poor households would help the households meet their basic needs, enable them to engage in productive activities and invest in the human capital thus breaking the intergenerational cycle of poverty. Specifically, the following are objectives of the programme:
- To improve basic household consumption and nutrition.
- To increase access to health care services.
- To increase basic school enrolment, attendance and retention.
- To facilitate access to complementary services to improve welfare, livelihoods, and labour productivity.
- To complement efforts of other interventions to mitigate shocks that may occur from humanitarian crises as needed/requested.
The LEAP Management Secretariat (LMS) believes that the cash grant alone cannot address extreme poverty rather there is the need to adopt a holistic approach, which involves collaborating with other pro-poor interventions of Governmental and non-Governmental organizations. These complementary services include access to:
- Education – school enrolment, attention, retention and completion
- Health – Immunization, NHIS
- Labour Intensive Public Works (LIPW)
- Agricultural inputs and services;
- Access to credit.
The extremely poor and vulnerable households are a priority of the LEAP programme. Specific social categories within the basket of the extreme poor are eligible to benefit from the programme. The eligible social categories are:
- Aged sixty-five years (65) and above without any form of support
- Severely disabled without productive capacity
- Orphaned and Vulnerable Children (OVC)
- Extremely poor or vulnerable households with pregnant women and mothers with infants.
The selection of a household for the LEAP programme goes through a deliberate, elaborate, consultative, objective and well-defined processes and procedures. The processes for selecting flow from the national level through regional, district, community and household levels. The processes and procedures involve the review of desk data from the Ghana Statistical Service (GSS), data collection in the field and data processing. Thereafter, the selection of a household for the programme through data collection and scoring. In short, the processes include consulting Ghana Statistical service for national poverty map; geographical targeting; household enumeration and by Ghana National Household Registry (GNHR) using a proxy-means testing questionnaire. The enumeration of households is done electronically. Selected households are then enrolled on the LEAP Programme and the platform of the payment service provider.
Households benefiting from the LEAP Programme do not receive the same amount, the amount a household receives is based on number of eligible household members. During the LEAP grant payments, a one eligible member household will receive GHC64.00, two eligible member household will receive GHC76.00, while three eligible member household will receive GHC88.00 and four and more eligible member household will receive GHC106.00.
All the beneficiaries of the LEAP Programme will be paid electronically on the e-zwich platform provided by Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems (GhIPSS) through Participating Financial Institutions (PFI’s). The PFIs are basically commercial and rural banks. The e-zwich payment platform requires biometric fingerprint verification of beneficiaries before they can cash-out their money. Thus, LEAP programme operates on the principle that “without biometric verification there will be no grant cash-out or payment” to beneficiary households.
Yes, the grant amounts have been increasing since 2008. The increase in the grant amount occurred in January 2012 and in September 2015. The details are in the table below and overleaf:
Table 2: Increases in LEAP grant amount over time
Increases in LEAP grant amount over time (2008-2015)
Number of Eligible
|2012– Aug 2015
|Sept 2015 to date
|4 and above
- Since the inception of the LEAP in 2008 the programme has experienced steady expansion in number households, districts and regions.
- The programme begun in 2008 with 1,654 households in 21 districts. Now, in all the districts, nationwide.
A further disaggregation of the household membership by eligibility categories:
- Orphans and vulnerable children (OVC) – 45%
- Persons with severe disability (PWSD) – 17%,
- Aged 65+ and beyond – 27%
- Extremely poor Pregnant women and infants under one year – 11%
Note: this is subject to intermittent changes due to data update and grievance redress.
Females constitute 55% whiles males constitute 45%.
Female headed Households make up 62% whiles Male Headed households is 38%
- At regional level is the Department of Social Welfare that monitor and supervise the of DSWOs.
- Then at the district level, are the DSWOs (LEAP focal persons in the District) and the District LEAP Implementation Committee (DLIC) who oversee the implementation of LEAP activities in the communities.
- In the communities, are the Community LEAP Implementation Committee (CLIC) members or Community Focal Persons (CFP) – volunteers supporting (mobilization and Sensitization) programme implementation.
Grievance redress mechanism or Case Management
- In a programme such as LEAP, beneficiary households and other stakeholders are bound to have grievances.
- To address these grievances systematically and effectively, the Programme has grievance redress mechanisms in place to receive and manage the resolution of complaints and grievances.
- Some of the complaints and grievances pertain to payment service delivery, household data updates, non-collection of cash grant and reports of deceased household member amongst others.
- To streamline the complaints and grievances process, the case management unit has clearly outlined channels for reporting all cases.
- The first point of call at the community level is the Community Focal Persons (CFP), who then relays the information through the DSWOs and subsequently to the LMS Head office.
- It is important to note that, this approach has been adapted to suit our clientele whom may not have the means to call the LMS directly.
- However, beneficiaries with the means to communicate directly with the LMS are encouraged to do so.
- The Ministry also has call centre with toll-free telephone numbers (known as the “Help Line of Hope” 0800800800 or 0800900900), for the public to lodge complains/cases/grievances.
- Some of these complains/cases/grievances that may require technical attention are referred to the appropriate Department/Agency/Secretariat for prompt action.
1. The impact of the LEAP programme is assessed through:
- Impact Evaluation (baseline, mid-line and end-line) – Independent Parties
- Internal monitoring and evaluation – MoGCSP and LMS
- CSOs – CDD, Imani,
- Development Partner reviews and assessments
- Research publications
- Development of documentaries
- Beneficiary testimonies and voices.
2. The outcomes of these impact assessments have been generally positive:
- LEAP contributed to 12% increase in school enrolment 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 their children,
- 62% of beneficiaries 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 also corroborated the 2012 findings from the impact assessment conducted by ISSER and North Carolina University of USA in 2012 (wave 2).
- The recent Institute of Statistical Social and Economic Research (ISSER) of the University of Ghana Impact Evaluation report for 2016 (Wave 3) present at the Social Protection Dialogue at La Palm suggested similar findings as CDD.
- The consistent expansion and developments that the LEAP Programme is experiencing is as a result of the commitment of the Government of Ghana and some Development Partners (DPs).
- The support of the DPs is in the form of grant and non-grant support (technical) from UNICEF, The World Bank and FCDO of the United Kingdom.
- Civil Society Organisation and the media often advocate and set the agenda for the programme; as well as demands accountable from the programme.