Building orphan competent communities: experiences from a community-based capital cash transfer initiative in Kenya

Health Policy Plan. 2011 May;26(3):233-41. doi: 10.1093/heapol/czq039. Epub 2010 Aug 30.


As a result of the increasing number of orphans in sub-Saharan Africa, numerous programmes have been initiated to facilitate the care and support of orphaned and vulnerable children. This paper reports on a community-based capital cash transfer initiative in Kenya and explores its role in building orphan competent and supportive communities through its participatory project cycle. Using a mixture of individual and group interviews, 300 orphaned children and 110 adults involved in this initiative were interviewed using open-ended questions. A thematic analysis of the data revealed that many of the communities participating in this programme had become more united and active in the support of orphaned children following the mobilization of much needed economic, political and social support resources. Despite many difficulties, largely due to the complexity of communities, we conclude that community-based capital cash transfer initiatives can facilitate the building of orphan competent communities.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Capital Financing / methods*
  • Child, Orphaned* / statistics & numerical data
  • Community Networks / economics*
  • Community Networks / standards
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Kenya
  • Social Support
  • Surveys and Questionnaires