This paper presents the findings of a qualitative research study conducted in order to observe the impacts of Kenya’s social pension on one rural community. This unique research required the researchers to live with a family and actively engage in cultural gatherings and meals, and through this, they were able to gain in-depth insights into how the pension impacted on the lives of beneficiaries, their families, and their community.
The study found that the pension has already had significant outcomes on older persons’ autonomy and self-worth. Older persons no longer need to rely on others for basic support, and therefore feel less like a burden to their family members. They are able to earn money in a way that is more appropriate for their age, which affords them more freedom to realise their ideal roles in society as elders.
This Development Pathways’ project is a multi-year study. The paper presents findings from the first two visits, but an endline study will be conducted in 2020/2021.