Aligning humanitarian cash assistance with national social safety nets: key considerations and learning

The purpose of this document is to share learning and considerations on how operations have or could progressively align humanitarian cash assistance for refugees to national social safety nets (SSN) and the criteria used to take decisions at each step of this process. It is based on information collected from Nigeria, Niger, Cameroon, Greece and Mexico as well as ongoing discussions on the topic.

The document reviews some of the pre-conditions for alignment of cash assistance as well as the considerations for alignment in different types of situations, including where the government has no or limited capacity; the government has some capacity and/or is supported by a development actor for the development of and funding for social assistance; and, lastly, where the government has the capacity and provides social assistance to its nationals but might be reluctant to incorporate refugees in the same system. The main findings and recommendations are presented below. The direction provided in this document must be considered in light of the varied and specific opportunities and challenges that each context presents.