Will our Opinion Matter? Community consultations on the design of multi-purpose cash programmes in Lebanon

Since late 2019, Lebanon has been grappling with a severe economic and financial crisis. The Lebanese lira has lost more than 98% of its value, and over half of the Lebanese population is estimated to be living in poverty. The Government of Lebanon and development and humanitarian agencies have scaled up their cash response and increased the reach of social safety nets to alleviate suffering. Humanitarian agencies have also stepped in to assist those who fall through the cracks of the government safety nets with multi-purpose cash assistance. Mercy Corps’ SAFER program assists poor Lebanese families with an integrated Cash-Plus package of assistance. In October 2023, Mercy Corps Lebanon conducted a series of consultations with Lebanese communities in the Bekaa Valley with the dual objective of increasing the participation of Lebanese communities in the design of multi-purpose cash assistance programs and identifying ways in which SAFER can complement social safety nets.