Poor rural households often depend on agriculture for their livelihoods and face a series of constraints in terms of their equitable access to productive resources, finance, markets and services – which trap them into poverty. They are also disproportionately affected by shocks and crises. Evidence shows that agriculture and social protection can jointly optimize their impacts in combating hunger and poverty. To promote those synergies, FAO works, in both stable and fragile/protracted crisis contexts, to improve the welfare of poor households and the resilience of their livelihoods in rural areas.
FAO has developed a specific intervention in both humanitarian and development settings: Cash+, which combines cash transfers with productive assets, inputs, and/or technical training and activities to enhance the livelihoods and productive capacities of poor and vulnerable households. The cash component enables beneficiary households to address their immediate basic needs, including for food, while the ‘plus’ component supports investment in household production, helping to protect, restore and develop livelihoods.
Recent experience and research showed that this approach can significantly improve agricultural production, income, asset ownership, economic empowerment, dietary diversity and food security, while reducing beneficiaries’ resort to negative coping mechanisms in response to shocks.
FAO is supporting the design and implementation (by Governments as well as by FAO country offices) of Cash+ interventions in several countries, following a normative, evidence-based and context-specific approach, to ensure greater impacts on beneficiaries. While different type of Cash+ interventions exist, different entry points to promote Cash+ at country level are used, depending on the existence and maturity of national social protection schemes, the level of coordination and involvement of the Ministry of Agriculture, the livelihoods context, the objectives of the programme, among others.
Specifically, the webinar aims at:
- Promoting FAO’s approach, evidence and work on Cash+, based on the recent policy brief on Cash+;
- Enabling cross-country and cross-regional knowledge exchange on FAO’s Cash+ interventions, presenting practical examples in Somalia, Kyrgyzstan and Lesotho; and
- Contributing to strengthening internal and external collaboration and partnerships.
This webinar is being hosted by the FAO.