This occasional podcast from the CALP Network looks in depth at the critical debates in humanitarian cash and voucher assistance (CVA). If you would like to take part or suggest topics for future episodes, get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org. CALP is a global partnership of humanitarian actors engaged in policy, practice and research in CVA.
Episode 7: How can we use cash and voucher assistance to support universal health goals?
In episode 7, we discuss how health needs, and the provision of health services, in humanitarian response works and where using Cash and Voucher Assistance (CVA) may help. What we know already is that CVA may be used for health outcomes but giving cash via Multi-Purpose Cash Assistance (MPCA) via the Minimum Expenditure Basket (MEB) isn’t enough to meet health needs. We look at best practice on including health in the MEB, innovations in using CVA on the demand side, and exciting new hybrid approaches that are bridging demand and supply to improve access and quality.
Globally, meeting health needs is known to be an inherently complex challenge. This is because both the demand side (who needs care, what care do they need), and the supply side (hospitals, doctors, nurses, pharmacies – and their funding) of quality health care are critical factors. Within a humanitarian context, accessing quality health services when needed is generally difficult for socio-economically vulnerable people, since individual health needs are often unpredictable. At the same time, access and availability of quality health services is likely to be affected by the crisis. The results of post-distribution monitoring and other surveys show that people in receipt of cash, especially multipurpose cash, repeatedly spend a large proportion of the cash on accessing health services.
Given this context, in this episode of the CashCast, our panel of experts explore the following questions:
How do health cluster members approach meeting health needs in a humanitarian crisis? Why are health needs and health services different to other needs and services? For example, food security and markets.Should we include health needs in an MEB and thus in the MPCA transfer value? Are there recent innovations in using CVA for health outcomes? The host and guests are:
Julie Lawson-McDowall (host) – Technical Advisor at the CALP Network.Andre Griekspoor – a medical doctor and public health expert with long experience in humanitarian health response. Andre is currently working in the Fragile, Conflict affected and Vulnerable settings unit of the World Health Organization' s department for Health Emergency Interventions. Among other things, he is responsible for health policy development in protracted crises, which includes approaches for health system strengthening in fragile contexts, and support to post conflict and disaster recovery planning processes. Anna Gorter – a medical doctor with a PhD in epidemiology. She has 40 years of experience working in low- and middle-income countries as a public health expert. Since 1995, she has been involved in the development of various approaches for Results Based Financing (RBF) for Health, such as health vouchers, and cash transfers. Corinne Grainger – an independent consultant working in health financing and health systems strengthening, with more than 20 years’ experience providing technical assistance across a range of intervention areas including Sexual and Reproductive Health, Family planning, MNH and adolescent health. In addition to support for programme design, management and evaluation, she has provided capacity development and strategic planning support for a range of government and NGOs.
We invite you to listen to this fascinating and in-depth conversation!
Further reading: there are associated resources produced by Global Health Cluster, WHO’s Cash Task Team and CALP. These include
Episode 6: Are we ready to use cash and voucher assistance to prepare for crises in Latin America and the Caribbean?
According to UNOCHA, between 2000 and 2019, 152 million people in Latin America and Caribbean were affected by 1,200 disasters that impacted the region. Furthermore, the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) recently cited that extreme poverty in the region grew by 86 million people in 2021 because of the deepening social and health crises.
Given this context, in this episode of the CashCast our panel of experts explores the following questions:
How can CVA effectively contribute to social assistance systems in order to improve the lives of millions of crises affected people? What can we learn from programmes in Latin America and Caribbean where there have been strong linkages between social protection and humanitarian CVA for preparedness? What are the challenges, enablers, barriers, and opportunities to using these modalities in this new way? The host and guests are:
Holly Welcome Radice (host) – Regional Representative – Americas, the CALP Network. Isidro Navarro Payá – Senior Regional Technical Advisor for CVA in Latin America and Middle East regions, World Vision. He is a humanitarian professional with over two decades of professional experience, most of it in programme management and as technical advisor from emergency relief to long term development programmes. Isidro has worked in all continents focusing on n the food security and livelihoods sector, recently specialising on cash and voucher assistance. Juan Gonzalo Jaramillo Mejia – Social Protection Programme Policy Officer at the United Nations’ World Food Programme. He is a global social protection specialist focused on researching and advising on the socio-economic impacts and enabling policy and programmatic features enhancing the food security, nutritional and socially inclusive outcomes of social assistance interventions. Rodolfo Beazley – An independent consultant with more than 15 years of experience in the field of social protection. He conducts research and supports governments and partners in designing and implementing policies and programs, with a focus on service delivery, including information systems, targeting approaches, and payment mechanisms, among others. In recent years he has focused on studying how social We invite you to listen in on this fascinating and in-depth conversation!
The idea for this episode of the CashCast emerged from this recent study “Cash & Voucher Assistance Within Social Protection Preparedness in Central America, Mexico, and The Dominican Republic”, commissioned by the CALP Network. To learn even more take a look at the study and associated resources which include two case studies, a blog, explainer video, infographics and the recording from the launch webinar.
The CashCast is an occasional podcast from the CALP Network that looks in depth at the critical debates in humanitarian cash and voucher assistance (CVA).
Episodio 6: ¿Estamos listos para usar las transferencias monetarias para prepararnos para las crisis en América Latina y el Caribe?
En este sexto episodio de CashCast exploramos esta pregunta junto a expertos, con años de experiencia en la región, para analizar las potenciales oportunidades, los beneficios y desafíos de vincular la protección social y las transferencias monetarias humanitarias para la preparación ante las crisis.
De acuerdo con un reporte de la Oficina de Coordinación de Asuntos Humanitarios de las Naciones Unidas (OCHA), entre los años 2000 y 2019 ocurrieron 1.200 desastres que afectaron a alrededor de 152 millones de personas en la región de América Latina y el Caribe. Además, en un reciente estudio de la Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe (CEPAL) se establece que hubo un incremento en la pobreza extrema que alcanzó a 86 millones de personas en 2021 debido a profundas crisis sociales y de salud.
Ante este contexto, en este episodio de CashCast nuestro panel de expertos explora las siguientes preguntas:
¿Cómo los programas de transferencias monetarias (PTM) pueden contribuir de forma efectiva a los sistemas de protección social con el fin de mejorar las vidas de millones de personas afectadas por las crisis?¿Qué podemos aprender de programas en la región en los que ha existido un fuerte vínculo entre protección social y PTM humanitarios para la preparación ante las crisis?¿Cuáles son los retos, factores facilitadores, barreras y oportunidades de usar estas modalidades en esta nueva forma?El anfitrión e invitados son:
José Jodar (anfitrión) – Senior Technical Officer de la CALP NetworkCelia Gonzalez – Iniciativa CashCap, actualmente se encuentra en Colombia apoyando la creación y consolidación de un grupo de trabajo sobre protección social dentro del marco del grupo de trabajo de transferencias monetarias. Oscar Portillo – GOAL Internacional, trabaja en la preparación de sistemas nacionales de respuesta en cuatro países: Honduras, Guatemala, el Salvador y República Dominicana. Florencia Alejandre – UNICEF, especialista en protección social en la Oficina Regional de este organismo para América Latina y el Caribe. ¡Le invitamos a escuchar esta fascinante y profunda conversación!
La idea para este episodio de CashCast surgió de nuestro reciente estudio, Programas de Transferencias Monetarias en el marco de los sistemas de protección social en la preparación ante las crisis en América Central, México y República Dominicana, comisionado por la CALP Network. Para ampliar aun más sobre este tema le invitamos a explorar la colección de recursos disponibles en torno al estudio, que incluyen dos estudios de casos (uno de Honduras y el otro de República Dominicana); un video explicativo sobre los principales hallazgos del estudio; infografías; la grabación del webinario del lanzamiento de este informe; además de un enlace a una entrada de Blog que aborda sobre este tema.
El CashCast es un podcast de la CALP Network que explora a profundidad los debates críticos sobre programas de transferencias monetarias (PTM) humanitarios.
Ep. 5: A Short History of Cash and Voucher Assistance
In this episode we take a look back over the evolution of cash and voucher assistance (CVA) and then leap forward to explore where it’s going next.
15 years ago, the use of CVA was still seen as a fringe activity limited to a small number of scattered projects. Even 6 years ago, it made up less than 8% of international humanitarian assistance.
In the last few years, growth has been rapid. It is now an essential part of almost every response and accounted for a very significant one fifth of international humanitarian assistance in 2019.
With CaLP’s 15th anniversary only recently behind us, Karen Peachey, CaLP’s Director is joined by a panel of guests to discuss what’s changed in CVA and to share their hopes and fears for the future. Each guest has played a key role in the journey of CVA and collectively and have a wealth of insights to share.
Discussions touched on many themes including:
How cash rose from the fringes to arrive in its more established position today, The role that evidence has played for CVA especially in comparisons to in-kind The role of key governmental, political and humanitarian allies in advancing the growth of cash The tendency to wrap CVA up in a language of innovation when fundamentally it is about enabling people impacted by crisis to be the agents of their own recovery The need to work better with both private sector and humanitarian partners An aspiration for the future to truly devolve power to people affected by crisis Guests:
Dr Jemilah Mahmood has been a key player in some of the big political developments around cash. She is currently serving as the Special Advisor to the Prime Minister of Malaysia on Public Health. Before that, she was Under-Secretary General at IFRC and led the Secretariat of the World Humanitarian Summit, where humanitarian actors were urged to ask “why not cash, and if not now -- when”.
Sarah Bailey has been instrumental in building the evidence base for cash. She is currently WFP’s Head of Programme in Barbados, and previously worked for ODI, generating much of the most influential evidence around the effectiveness, efficiency and transformational potential of CVA.
Nigel Timmins has been a key player in building and supporting the partnerships and networks that have helped cash to grow. He is the Humanitarian Director of Oxfam International, and served at the Chair of CaLP’s Board, for four years before stepping down in 2019.
Zehra Rizvi has been a passionate and motivated cash advocate from the start of this journey. She is a CVA and social protection specialist and currently works for UNICEF in the MENA region. Before that, she has worked on cash with many organisations and as an independent consultant. She was also a member of CaLP’s first Steering Committee in 2008 representing the British Red Cross.
Our guests join us to share their own thoughts and experiences and are not acting as spokespeople for any particular origination.
Keep an eye out for a blog summarising the discussions which will be published on the CaLP website: https://www.calpnetwork.org/blog/
Ep. 4. How to link social protection and humanitarian CVA: What do we really know and where to start?
In this episode of the CashCast, we explore how to Link Social Protection and Humanitarian Cash and Voucher Assistance. We recorded this episode following the release of the High-Level Briefing Paper on Linking Social Protection and Humanitarian Cash and Voucher Assistance - https://bit.ly/3ibPBxb. The panel examined the different contexts in which efforts are being made to link CVA and social protection, the good practices evolving out of these contexts, and the complexity of operating in crisis contexts.
Our guests and host included:
Julie Lawson-McDowall (host) - Knowledge Management and Research Coordinator at CaLPPaul Harvey - Researcher and consultant at from Humanitarian OutcomesDaniel Longhurst - Researcher and consultantRachel Sabates-Wheeler - Development Economist at The Institute of Development StudiesOrhan Hacimehmet - Cash response Coordinator at the Turkish Red CrescentIf you have any questions please contact us - https://www.calpnetwork.org/about/contact/
Ep. 3. What does the future of financial assistance mean for your work today?
Last year CaLP published the Future of Financial Assistance report, laying out potential scenarios for humanitarian action in 2030. But in a rapidly changing environment, what does this mean for humanitarian actors right now? In the latest episode of the CashCast we speak to Meg Sattler from Ground Truth Solutions, Lars Peter Nissen from ACAPS, and Jenny Caswell from GSMA about the changes we should be seeing today, to effectively meet the humanitarian needs of the future.