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Economic Strengthening for the Very Poor (ES4VP)

Why Economic Strengthening?

“A portfolio of interventions to reduce the economic vulnerability of households and empower them to provide for the essential needs of the children they care for, rather than relying on external assistance.” (PEPFAR working definition, 2011)

Economic strengthening approaches refer to programs and services that seek to develop the economic capacity of individuals and households. They range from direct interventions and services aimed at strengthening livelihood assets (such as capital gifts of animals, tools, or inventory) to systemic interventions and policies to bring about social and economic changes that can positively impact the economic capacity of ultra poor households (such as increased access to skills training and marketing supports). Economic strengthening approaches can include microfinance, microenterprise development, market development, livelihoods promotion, and asset transfers.

Why economic strengthening?

Household economic strengthening (HES) is the process by which individuals and households improve their living conditions by participating in any number of activities that increase assets (physical, financial, human or social) and/ or their capacity to obtain them.

By maintaining and enhancing livelihood assets and capabilities, households become economically secure and able to cope with and recover from stresses and external shocks.

Why is economic strengthening important? (LIFT HES Training PPP)

  • Enables households to meet their needs. 
  • Health, nutrition and economic well-being are closely linked. 
  • Positive health and nutrition outcomes usually can’t be achieved while households lack access to income.