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Cash transfer mechanisms and disaster preparedness in the Philippines

2011 — By Gregoire Poisson

The use of cash to deliver assistance in case of humanitarian emergency remains a relatively new approach in the Philippines, and aid agencies are at the early stages of developing guidelines, policies and organizational capacity to implement cash projects. Project managers lack support and guidance with the practicalities of how to deliver cash to people most efficiently and effectively. Too often that means that they have to start from scratch in assessing and choosing between different options for cash delivery.

This report documents lessons learned from previous Filipino experiences with Cash Transfer Programs, including approaches, constraints and opportunities, and it identifies key needs to develop CTPs (section 1 on Cash Transfer Programs). It explores the available transfer mechanisms, how they can be adapted to the needs of the humanitarian community, and assesses the pros and cons of different options (section 2 on cash transfer mechanisms). This section provides a comparative analysis of mechanisms, as well as a mechanism setup sheet in annex. Finally, it investigates how agencies can prepare themselves to implement CTPs, through the integration of CTPs and mechanisms in their contingency plans, procedures, capacity building and other preparation measures (section 3, preparedness), with practical guidance provided in annex.

The report is based on a review of the relevant literature, project documents and interviews with aid agency staff and commercial providers.