Workstream 3 (Increase the use and coordination of cash-based programming): October 2019 update

Published Date

Please see below an update on the work of the Grand Bargain cash workstream, prepared by the Co-convenors DFID and WFP. Since their annual workshop in May 2019, members of the workstream have progressed a number of exciting initiatives which we are happy to share:

1. New Sub-Workstreams!

Following the global workshop held in Rome last May, participants in the workstream determined that two new sub-workstreams would be formed to focus on the following areas:

a) Tackling political blockages to expanding the use of humanitarian cash

One of the new workstreams is Tackling Political Blockages to Effective Cash, co-led by CaLP and USAID, and based on the understanding that progress on a number of important issues including cash coordination iscurrently stalled because of pending decisions which need to be addressed at the political level. Combining the political reach and influence of the Grand Bargain platform with the collective understanding of signatories on the issues needing unblocking presents an opportunity to effect positive change. The workstream has recently asked for agencies interested in participating to get in touch with Sophie Tholstrup and Ruco Van Der Merwe.

b) Enhancing local partnerships

Local partnerships have now also been recognized as a key area for the cash workstream.  A sub-workstream has been formed to take this work forward.  Co-led by a local partner (TBC), SDC and Oxfam this sub-workstream is in the early stages of formation and aims to have a workplan ready toward the end of the year. The local partnerships work will coordinate with the GB localization workstream providing an opportunity for better linkages between the two workstreams and to address some of the challenges highlighted last year on cross-fertilization between workstreams (ODI GB Report-2019).  If your organization or a local partner you work with would like to be part of this workstream moving forward please get in touch with Kristin Smart, Oxfam and/or Stefan Bumbacher, SDC.

2. Merging of Tracking Cash and CE2HA Sub-Workstreams

The Tracking Cash and Cost Efficiency and Cost Effectiveness sub-workstreams have merged their workplans, and re-named as Efficiency, Effectiveness, and Value. The combined workstream continues to be led by USAID, IRC, and CaLP.

3. USAID align cash indicators with cash workstream MPC outcome indicators

As of the first week of October, USAID/OFDA has aligned its Multipurpose Cash Assistance indicators with the Grand Bargain Cash Workstream Multipurpose Cash  outcome Indicators document. The outcome indicators document was produced by the Cost Efficiency and Cost Effectiveness Sub-Workstream over the past two years and represents a joint OFDA/FFP initiative.

The current Application Guidelines are here (direct link to the MPCA indicators section of the Guidelines), and the reference sheets can be found here.

4. New Cost-Efficiency Analysis Guide

The Efficiency, Effectiveness and Value for Money Sub-Workstream is pleased to share the final output on Cost-Efficiency Analysis of Basic Needs Programs: Best Practice Guidance for Humanitarian Agencies (see below). It has been nearly a year in the making and received input from a wide ranging body of technical experts. It is hoped that this guidance will form the foundational building blocks for how cost-efficiency analysis of humanitarian programs is done. Please circulate to the cash community and let us know if there are any questions. 

5. Planning for 2020 workplans and workshop

It is early, but we are currently in the process of putting together workplans for the first part of 2020, which we hope to share soon. We will also begin planning for the 2020 annual workshop in the coming months, to ensure all colleagues have sufficient time to plan ahead for those interested in attending. While we are very grateful to WFP for kindly hosting the event the past two years, we would be keen to find a venue outside of Rome for the next workshop. If anyone has any suggestions of venues able to host 80-90 participants, we would be grateful to receive them.