121 – (Upskilling and Upscaling) Cash and Voucher Assistance

Lead Organization: Dorcas
Partners: Dorcas, Cordaid, Help a Child, Tearfund, ZOA, Netherlands Red Cross – 510
Duration: January 1, 2019 – August 8, 2020 l April 1, 2021 – 31 March, 2022
Goal: Increased quality and scale of Cash and Voucher Assistance (CVA) to ensure that people receive CVA in a safe, fast, and fair way. Humanitarian organizations and local partners should be able to deliver CVA at scale. To do so they need to increase their cash information management skills and implement digital tools in their CVA processes.
Highlight: The 121 project intends to be a disruptive innovation that changes the way the Humanitarian sector implements cash programming. 121 products are innovative by focussing on simplicity, contextualisation and open-source. This contrasts with existing commercial products that focus on INGOs, become complex, and require advanced skills and considerable program size.

For humanitarian organisations, insufficient knowledge, skills, systems and tools are key barriers to increase cash program quality and scale. Better Cash Information Management (Cash IM) and improved systems and tools can address this gap.

Challenges of people affected concern being assisted in a dignified way, reducing complexity and duration of registration, and receiving clear communication on their inclusion, start and stop of the program.

121 products are innovative by focusing on simplicity, contextualisation and open-source. The products address the identified challenges of humanitarian organisations and people affected through:

  1. Cash program design wizard.
  2. Person affected app for self-registration.
  3. Aid worker app for validation.
  4. Humanitarian organisation portal to monitor and manage cash programs.

121 services
address the challenges of insufficient knowledge and skills (process innovation), by implementing holistic roadmaps to improve how data flows from needs assessment and registration up to payments and evaluation (cash IM processes). Services include CVA process analysis, human-centered design, cash IM training, peer-to-peer support and a knowledge sharing platform.

To test the 121 platform with users and to gather user insights for further development and to scale up.  The pilot was implemented with undocumented migrants in the Netherlands instead of the planned pilots in Malawi and Ethiopia due to Covid- 19.

Update: The 121 products and services are relevant for Joint Responses and DRA partners as they can facilitate and contribute to the strategic ambition of the DRA to scale cash programming.

Current project activities focus on the further development of 121 productions (deepening), introducing 121 solutions to more countries and new partners (broadening) and generating the necessary knowledge, tools, business model and validation of 121 solutions (embedding).

To ensure equal partnerships a project committee is set up to coordinate the activities, provide feedback and build the relations between partners.

For more information: See PDF


Contact lead organization Dorcas
Anton van Wijk
E: a.vanwijk@dorcas.nl