Designing Cash Based Programs

4.1 Selecting Beneficiaries: Targeting for cash-based programs can be challenging, since cash is a highly valued form of humanitarian assistance.

a) Types of beneficiary targeting (briefing note)

b) Sample Criteria for Beneficiary Selection

c) Sample communications materials for communities around beneficiary selection. Coming Soon!

4.2 Setting the Value & Frequency of Cash Transfers:  The value of a cash transfer should be based on the aims of the program. Here are some things to consider when setting the cash transfer value.

a) Overall Considerations for Setting the Cash Transfer Value

b) Guidance for Setting Cash Values for Multi-Purpose and Sectors (food, shelter, WASH, specialized needs) Coming Soon!

c) Creating a Minimum Expenditure Basket (MEB)


Sample from Nepal

Sample from Greece MEB 

Sample from Greece MEB Justification

d) Cash Transfer Value Calculation Tool

e) Adjusting the value of cash transfers

Adjustments based on household size 

Adjustments based on price changes

f) Setting the frequency of cash transfers  The frequency of the cash transfers will depend on the needs of the population and the aims of the program Coming Soon!

4.3 Creating a Flexible Program: In many emergencies, the context is likely to change quickly. For example, in a natural disaster, people will recover and markets will be restored quickly, meaning that maybe an initial in-kind distribution should shift to cash. In an ongoing conflict, there is the risk that markets will be cut off, necessitating a shift to in-kind distributions. Plan your program with a contingency plan from the outset.

a) Guidance on creating flexible or multi-modality programs Coming Soon!

b) Contingency Planning Guidance Document  & Contingency Planning Tool