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Report

Choice, Dignity and Empowerment? Cash and Food Transfers in Swaziland: An evaluation of Save the Children’s Emergency Drought Response

2008 — By Stephen Devereux, Paul Jere

This evaluation report looks at the Save the Children’s cash transfer project, which was a response to the 2007/8 food crisis in Swaziland, with the aim of not only providing humanitarian assistance but also as a way to break the dependency of rural families on food aid. Selected beneficiaries were given a half ration of food and the equivalent in cash for six months. A control group received only food rations as a means of comparing the impacts of cash transfer recipients and food aid recipients.

The report provides full background and context to the programme and situation along with some of the issues in the design and implementation of the project including design choices, targeting, delivery mechanisms, ‘customer care’ and efficiency and cost-effectiveness. The impact of the project is then discussed in detail examining the ways the cash and food transfers were used and their contribution to household income and expenditure. An analysis of impacts of the transfers on several aspects of household and individual well-being is then provided (including food security, non food goods and services, livelihoods, women and communities and markets). Lessons learned and recommendations are then drawn to help in the delivery of future programming.