Do “cash +” interventions enable greater resilience and dietary diversity than just cash in southern Malawi?

Social protection programs that provide regular and predictable additional financial support are critical to the ultra-poor in Malawi. The EU funded Pro-ACT FUTURE project has shown that complementary interventions that are layered on top of a cash transfer tend to foster a greater resilience to climatic shocks and diversification of livelihoods for vulnerable households.

A United Purpose-led consortium comprising of United Purpose, Save the Children and Concern Worldwide is implementing the Pro-Resilience Action (Pro-ACT) program with funding from the European Union (EU) under the name Food and Nutrition for Resilience (FUTURE) program in Nsanje, Mulanje and Zomba. The program aims to address existing food and nutrition security challenges among the poorest households by increasing their resilience to climate-related stresses and shocks.

An annual survey conducted in 2020 sought to determine changes that have occurred since the project inception with regards to food security, general livelihood improvements, and resilience of ultra-poor households and communities to climate change and its related effects.

Findings show that the project is achieving its intended objectives: the average household asset index has increased by 51%, the hunger gap has been reduced by 2 months, and a 26% increase in the household dietary diversity score has been observed.

During this webinar the findings from the survey will be explored and the impact of COVID-19 will be outlined. The webinar will also discuss how the project plans to build on the gains made in the next phase of the program.


  • Esther Mweso, Program Manager, United Purpose
  • Luciano Msunga, MEAL Manager, United Purpose
  • Carlota Rego, Program Manager for Social Protection & Resilience at the EU Delegation to Malawi


  • Jan Duchoslav, Research Fellow, IFPRI Malaw