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Guidelines and Tools

Multipurpose cash outcome indicators and guidance

The indicators in this document, developed by the Grand Bargain Cash Workstream, focus on the primary objectives of humanitarian Multipurpose Cash Assistance (MPC), and the outcomes to which MPC can most strongly contribute in a given context.

May 2022 — By sub-workstream of the Grand Bargain Cash Workstream, co-led by Dina Brick (Catholic Relief Services), Laura Meissner (USAID’s Bureau of Humanitarian Affairs), and Ruth McCormack (CALP Network), with support from Jose Jodar (CALP Network).

MPC is intended to enable people to meet their basic needs through local markets as they see fit, hence, its outcomes will vary, depending on the context, design (e.g., transfer values, number of transfers) and each household’s prioritized needs. With MPC becoming a more common form of humanitarian assistance, the need was identified for better and more consistent and comparable measurement of the outcomes to which MPC contributes.

To this end, a group of stakeholders – including practitioners and donors – came together under the Grand Bargain Cash Workstream starting in 2018 to identify relevant outcome indicators in a participatory process. A ‘final draft for testing’ was released in July 2019, with feedback from experiences of using this version of the indicators forming the basis for a substantial revision that resulted in this document, available in full and summary versions in Arabic, English, French and Spanish.

These documents present a core set of household level outcome indicators that can serve as a limited menu from which donors and implementers can choose. They do not seek to capture all potential outcomes (positive or negative) of MPC, but include both cross-cutting (protection mainstreaming, basic needs, women’s decision-making, expenditure, livelihoods coping strategies) and sector-specific indicators (child protection; education; food security; health; non-food items (NFIs); nutrition; shelter and settlements; WASH).   

How this guidance can be used?

  • Donors are strongly encouraged to align their indicators with those included, in line with commitments to harmonize and simplify reporting requirements.
  • Implementers should use relevant indicators in their MPC monitoring frameworks.
  • Cash Working Groups are encouraged to apply these indicators and guidance notes as a reference and integrate them into response level guidance and tools.

When should they be used?

These indicators should be used for monitoring recurrent MPC transfers during the assistance period. Practitioners and donors should decide which indicators are required based on the length of the program, recurrence of transfers, and anticipated outcomes.