Two forms are recognized: formal and informal safety nets. Formal safety nets are those that legally guarantee low-income individuals access to economic or social support, whereas informal safety nets provide livelihood support to individuals to enable them to remain above the designated minimum standard of living but with no legal guarantee that this support will continue. Social assistance is defined as non-contributory transfers to those individuals deemed eligible for assistance by society on the basis of their vulnerability or poverty. The aim of social assistance is minimum income protection (a "safety net") for particularly poor and excluded people. Social assistance is mainly given on the basis of need and is often subject to means-testing – especially in programmes where universal citizen-based or residence-based coverage is extended. Benefits are not raised through contributions but are funded from the State budget. In Kenya, the term "social assistance" is used to refer to non-contributory transfer programmes aimed at preventing the poor or those who are vulnerable to shocks from falling below a certain poverty level.
National Safety Net Program
Cash Transfer Programme to Persons with Severe Disabilities (PWSD-CT)
Targets adults and children with severe disabilities and who require full time support.
Hunger Safety Net Programme (HSNP)
Reduce dependency on emergency food aid, in Arid and Semi-Arid Lands by sustainably strengthening livelihoods through cash transfers.
Cash Transfer – Orphaned and Vulnerable Children (CT-OVC)
Provide a social protection system through regular cash transfers to families living with OVCs
Older Persons Cash Transfer (OPCT)
Provide regular and predictable cash transfer to poor and vulnerable older persons (65 years and above)