Cash & Voucher Assistance (CVA) is the provision of cash transfers or vouchers, when appropriate, for the affected population to decide how to meet their own needs using available local resources. It restores people’s autonomy and helps to rebuild the local economy.
The International Disaster Database recorded a steady increase in the frequency of disasters over the past 35 years. As a result, the number of people affected by humanitarian crises has almost doubled over the past 10 years, whilst the cost of humanitarian assistance has tripled. For this reason, the humanitarian world is undergoing a transformation in the way that aid is delivered. This transformation goes hand in hand with the humanitarian principles of impartiality, neutrality and independence.
Assistance must always reach the most vulnerable. An effective way to support people affected by disasters is through a combination of Cash & Voucher Assistance and Forecast-based Financing (FbF). FbF allows for both decisionmakers, and people affected to better prepare for and cope with disasters and thus reduce needs when disaster strikes. Cash & Voucher Assistance offers a more efficient and dignified means to deliver assistance, empowers people in need and fosters local economies.
“We [IFRC] are committed to delivering 50% of our humanitarian assistance through cash and vouchers by 2025.”IFRC Plan and Budget 2021–2025