Haitians at the Sant Triyaj Fatra Kafoufey recycling factory in Port-au-Prince queue to receive payment for their street-cleaning work through the "Cash for Work" programme, an initiative launched by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in the aftermath of Haiti's earthquake. (Photo: UN Photo/Sophia Paris)
Read caption Haitians at a recycling factory in Port-au-Prince queue to receive payment for their street-cleaning work through the "Cash for Work" programme, an initiative launched by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in the aftermath of Haiti's earthquake. (Photo: UN Photo/Sophia Paris)

Cash and markets

Published 16. Jun 2016
Providing people with money instead of traditional in-kind assistance such as food, blankets, seeds or tools has many benefits. It gives people the opportunity to make their own decisions on how to best meet their needs. Cash transfers also play a vital role in supporting local economies and helping to restore livelihoods.

CashCap experts coordinate cash and market-based responses, and support the development of system-wide policies and strategies on the use of cash-based interventions in emergencies. Their aim is to ensure that people affected by crises are empowered and receive dignified assistance. Whether cash is the best way of doing so depends on the context.

Read more: Building cash capacity

Field example

In Iraq, with around 3.2 million people displaced and the country hosting more than 244,000 refugees, humanitarian organisations made increasing use of cash-based interventions towards the end of 2015.

CashCap experts were deployed to ensure better coordination between UN agencies, NGOs and donors on the ground. This was particularly important in identifying and targeting the most vulnerable and needy beneficiaries, and ensuring delivery mechanisms were effective.

Cash transfer symposium

In April 2016, a Humanitarian Cash Transfer Symposium was held in Nigeria, initiated by two CashCap experts. The two-day event, with participants from both the humanitarian community and private sector, was supported by NORCAP in cooperation with the Food and Agriculture Organisation and the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

One of the CashCap experts also interviewed NGOs about their cash transfer services and services to internally displaced people in North East Nigeria (see video below). 

How to request CashCap experts

Cash and vouchers used with internally displaced people fleeing from the Boko Haram insurgency in the North-Eastern provinces of Nigeria (Photo from Cashcap video)