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Supporting Dignified Choices ‘Paper Plus’ Cash Voucher Programming in Camps in Jordan

1 May 2015 — By NRC

The Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) in Jordan has directly assisted close to 400,000 vulnerable Syrian refugees in both formal camps and host communities since it began operations in November 2012. NRC is the lead partner of UNHCR in Zaatari and Azraq camps in providing refugees with shelter and the management and distribution of nonfood items (NFIs). In the second half of 2014 NRC began piloting a market-based cashdenominated voucher approach in place of centralised NFI distributions ‘Paper Plus’, and has now expanded the programme to camp-wide voucher distributions. In the latest round of voucher distribution to support the population of Zaatari, NRC distributed 121,505 vouchers worth 1.57 million Euros to 18,778 households in less than 10 days. Less than 6 weeks later, 99.53% of the vouchers had been redeemed in the camp supermarkets. A cash voucher approach provides beneficiaries with greater choice and flexibility to meet their families’ most urgent needs. More generally, cashbased programming can empower beneficiaries, particularly women within the household such as with flexibility of when to shop, and have broader multiplier effects for both refugees and host community including the private sector than traditional in-kind assistance.

This report provides a detailed analysis of the ‘Paper Plus’ vouchers programme used in refugee camps in Jordan.