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Sources of Financial Assistance for Households Suffering an Adult Death in Kagera, Tanzania

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  • M Lundberg
  • M Over
  • P Mujinja

Abstract

The AIDS crisis in Africa and elsewhere compels us to design appropriate assistance policies for households experience a death. Policies should take into account and strengthen existing household coping strategies, rather than duplicate or undermine them. The authors investigate the nature of coping mechanisms among a sample of households in Kagera, Tanzania in 1991-1994. They estimate the magnitude and timing of receipts of private transfers, credits, and public assistance by households with different characteristics. Their empirical strategy addresses three common methodological difficulties in estimating the impact of adult death: selection bias, endogeneity, and unobserved heterogeneity. The authors find that less-poor households (those with more physical and human capital) benefit from larger receipts of private assistance than poor households. Resource-abundant households are wealthy in social assets as well as physical assets. Poor households, on the other hand, rely relatively more on loans than private transfers, for up to a year after a death. This suggests that credit acts as insurance for households where informal interhousehold assistance contracts are not enforceable. A donor in Kagera can be sure that assistance to a wealthy household may not be able to return the favor. Assistance to the poor is more likely to come with more formal arrangements for repayment. Formal-sector assistance is targeted toward the poor immediately following the death. The impact of adult deaths on households may be mitigated either ex ante, through programs that minimize poverty and vulnerability, or ex post, by assistance targeted to the poorest and most vulnerable households. In addition, to the extent to which micro-credit programs improve access and lower the total costs of borrowing, they may not only stimulate growth and investment but also help resource-poor households overcome the impact of an adult death in the areas hard-hit by the AIDS epidemic.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Economic Society of South Africa in its journal South African Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 68 (2000)
Issue (Month): 5 (December)
Pages: 420-443

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Handle: RePEc:bla:sajeco:v:68:y:2000:i:5:p:420-443

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Cited by:
  1. Hagen, Jens & Omar Mahmoud, Toman & Trofimenko, Natalia, 2010. "Orphanhood and Critical Periods in Children's Human Capital Formation: Long-Run Evidence from North-Western Tanzania," Proceedings of the German Development Economics Conference, Hannover 2010 33, Verein für Socialpolitik, Research Committee Development Economics.
  2. Jens Hagen & Toman Omar Mahmoud & Natalia Trofimenko, 2010. "Orphanhood and Critical Periods in Children’s Human Capital Formation: Long-Run Evidence from North-Western Tanzania," Kiel Working Papers 1649, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  3. Chapoto, Antony & Jayne, Thomas S., 2005. "Impact of HIV/AIDS-Related Deaths on Rural Farm Households' Welfare in Zambia: Implications for Poverty Reduction Strategies," Food Security Collaborative Working Papers 54473, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
  4. Beegle, Kathleen & De Weerdt, Joachim & Dercon, Stefan, 2006. "Adult mortality and consumption growth in the age of HIV/AIDS," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4082, The World Bank.
  5. Lawrence Haddad & Stuart Gillespie, 2001. "Effective food and nutrition policy responses to HIV|AIDS: what we know and what we need to know," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(4), pages 487-511.
  6. Yamano, Takashi & Jayne, Thomas S., 2002. "Measuring the Impacts of Prime-age Adult Death on Rural Households in Kenya," Food Security Collaborative Working Papers 55152, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
  7. Yamano, Takashi & Jayne, T S, 2005. "Working-Age Adult Mortality and Primary School Attendance in Rural Kenya," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 53(3), pages 619-53, April.
  8. Arndt, Channing & Wobst, Peter, 2002. "HIV/AIDS and labor markets in Tanzania," TMD discussion papers 102, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  9. Jayne, Thomas S. & Mather, David & Mghenyi, Elliot W., 2006. "Smallholder Farming Under Increasingly Difficult Circumstances: Policy and Public Investment Priorities for Africa," Food Security International Development Policy Syntheses 54507, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
  10. Haddad, Lawrence James & Gillespie, Stuart, 2001. "Effective food and nutrition policy responses to HIV/AIDS," FCND briefs 112, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  11. Jayne, T.S. & Mather, David & Mghenyi, Elliot, 2010. "Principal Challenges Confronting Smallholder Agriculture in Sub-Saharan Africa," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(10), pages 1384-1398, October.
  12. Ainsworth, Martha & Dayton, Julia, 2003. "The Impact of the AIDS Epidemic on the Health of Older Persons in Northwestern Tanzania," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 131-148, January.
  13. Christopher Ksoll, 2007. "Family Networks and Orphan Caretaking in Tanzania," Economics Series Working Papers 361, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  14. Ainsworth, Martha & Dayton, Julia, 2001. "The impact of the AIDS epidemic on the health of the elderly in Tanzania," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2649, The World Bank.
  15. Yamano, Takashi & Jayne, T. S., 2004. "Measuring the Impacts of Working-Age Adult Mortality on Small-Scale Farm Households in Kenya," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 91-119, January.

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