The purpose of the Expanding Social Protection (ESP) Programme is to put in place a national social protection system in line with the National Social protection Policy that benefits the poorest as a core element of Uganda’s national policy, planning and budgeting processes.
Between 2010-2015, the Government of Uganda, with support from DFID/UKAID, Irish Aid and UNICEF piloted the Expanding Social Protection (ESP) Programme. The ESPI had two objectives; (i) to develop the National Social Protection Policy and, (ii) the pilot the Social Assistance Grants for Empowerment (SAGE) under which the Senior Citizens Grant was implemented.
Following the successful completion of the pilot in 2015, the Government of Uganda took a decision to roll out the Senior Citizens Grants to an additional 40 districts over 5 years; starting with 20 in Financial Year 2015/16, thereafter to 5 districts every year, till 2019/20. The National Social Protection Policy for Uganda was approved by Cabinet in November 2015 and launched in March 2016. The Policy provides a wider framework for social protection implementation in Uganda, beyond the social grants.
It is against this backdrop that the ministry of Gender, Labour & Social Development created the ESP-PMU as the coordination centre for roll out of the National Social Protection Policy, but also to manage the roll out of the Senior Citizens Grants.
In Financial Year 2017/18, The Programme reached beneficiaries in 47 districts. Of these 15 were pilot, 25 new roll out and seven were curved out of some of the older districts. (See: Districts Where we work. It is expected that new districts will be curved out from the older ones in 2018/2019. The Programme will take these on too.
For more Information: ESP Website