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Gender and Cash Based Assistance in Humanitarian Contexts: An Agenda for Collective Action

March 2018 — By CaLP

In February 2018, a symposium in Nairobi on “Gender and Cash Based Assistance” brought together 100 senior managers, technical advisors, researchers and other disaster management practitioners with national, regional and global mandates. An agenda for immediate action was identified.
Existing gender inequalities mean that disasters and conflicts impact women, men, girls and boys differently. Cash based assistance is one of the most significant recent developments in humanitarian assistance in recent years. But the relationship between gender and cash based assistance in humanitarian contexts is poorly
understood.
All too often, cash based assistance is designed based on assumptions rather than evidence. While learning from development contexts is helpful, the relevance of these findings to humanitarian action is often untested. As a result, many interventions fail to capitalise on opportunities to foster positive gender impacts or, worse still, have unintended negative consequences.
This six-point agenda requires action by different teams within organisations and a collective effort by all humanitarian actors – implementing partners and donors alike.