Governments and famous organizations often provide financial aids to people and businesses. These aids are called social grants. Only those below the poverty line can receive such financial aids. The concept of social grant is to help the poor lead a better life. It helps those who are old and physically disabled to earn a living.
Often you will read news bulletins in newspapers about government departments offering social grants to disadvantaged people. It takes care of their basic needs, such as healthcare, food, and shelter. You must be wondering how people get such grants on time to help them lead a healthy life. This challenging process is made simple with the introduction of technology. You will find numerous digital apps and platforms that can help make the process of social grant distribution simple.
Traditional Methods of Social Grant Distribution
In the past, social grants were mostly distributed through traditional methods. However, these processes were time-consuming, cumbersome, and slow. Keeping track of the find transfers and monitoring various relevant systems was also a major challenge. In addition, information was stored in paper-based systems that could easily fall into the wrong hands.
In addition to the above challenges, one major drawback of the traditional form of distributing social grants was reaching the right people in need of such financial assistance. Such people were mostly in the rural or remote areas where the lack of proper banking facilities and availability of government offices were common. Thus, delays and inaccurate transfers of funds were standard.
Technology in Social Grant Distribution
When proper social grant distribution posed a major threat, the introduction of technology proved to be a boon in disguise. You cannot ignore technology’s importance and primary role in distributing social grants. Various digital platforms have made the application and distribution processes smooth and quick.
Using technology in the social grant distribution process has its fair share of advantages:
- The application process for such grants has become more efficient and effective.
- There has been a vast improvement in the real-time monitoring and tracking systems of such financial aids.
- According to data, there has been a substantial reduction in the number of frauds for social grants.
- The introduction of technology has made it possible for people residing in remote areas to get their grants on time.
When you talk about the introduction of technology in the distribution of social grants, there have been several innovations that have helped in the process:
- Mobile applications and digital platforms have simplified social grant application and verification.
- Biometric technology, including facial recognition and fingerprint collection, has helped to avoid scams and fraud.
- There are also digital means to assist in real-time tracking of the fund distribution.
- Apart from helping distribute social grants, the introduction of technology has also helped streamline the entire process, ensure proper grant distribution, and reduce costs.
Impact of Technology on Beneficiaries
Technology has indeed helped governments and organizations that provide social grants to you when you need it the most. However, it is also true that it has helped you in a great way. With the rise of numerous digital tools and applications, you can now learn more about social grants. An example can be seen with the huge operations involved with the South African SASSA R350 Covid Relief grant. They maintained all registrations using an online and enabled applicants to check their sassa status and even change their banking details using this portal.
Information on grant distribution and the ability to communicate easily with service providers is now very simple for you. No need for you to run from pillar to post to collect relevant information. Apart from the above, technology has also helped you keep in touch with your friends, also in need of such financial aids. This way you can form a network. This would help you avoid social isolation and engage in community services.
There are several benefits of using technology for the beneficiaries:
- It can make it easier for them to apply for and receive social grants.
- Beneficiaries can get real-time information about their grant application.
- Technology can help beneficiaries get better access to such grants, which was impossible with the traditional form of grant distribution.
Challenges of Technology in Social Grant Distribution
If you think that there are only positive things about technology, then you are wrong. There are also several problems with using technology when it comes to social grants. You will find many remote areas in your country where technology is yet to enter. You are correct in thinking that people in those areas will not be able to use technology easily. You need to educate them and then train them to use it.
Apart from social limitations, you will also find some technical problems that may prevent you from using technology for distributing or receiving social grants. Things like server crashes, system errors, and network outages are common problems that can create major issues.
You won’t be wrong if you think that technology has simplified your lives. However, you also cannot deny the fact that there are certain limitations to it that you should take care of if you want to make full use of the technology around you. One thing is for sure that you can easily apply for social grants and check to see the progress of your application through apps and other tools. This was something unimaginable in the past.