|Operationalizing Household Livelihood Security - A holistic approach for addressing poverty and vulnerability (CARE , 2000, 54 p.)|
CARE officially adopted Household Livelihood Security (HLS) as a programming framework in 1994. Over the past 5 years, CARE has been working to institutionalize the approach in its programming worldwide. This has neither been a smooth nor easy process. Significant progress has been made in improving concepts, strengthening their application, and understanding their implications on program design and evaluation.
This paper describes how HLS has been operationalized in CARE. Drawing on lessons learned from a number of countries, the paper shows how livelihood concepts and tools have been taken into account in strategic planning, diagnosis, design, implementation, monitoring, reformulation and evaluation.
Household Livelihood Security continues to be the cornerstone framework that CARE uses to carry out its programming efforts. It allows CARE to have a more holistic view of the world to inform our programming decisions, enabling the organization to better understand the root causes of poverty. In addition, it helps to clearly identify opportunities and leverage points for positive change. Application of the livelihood framework should not be considered a linear process, but rather a flexible, dynamic and iterative process over time.
Taking a holistic view does not always mean that one must undertake multiple interventions. Application of the HLS framework can be done using various entry points.
Over the past several years, CARE has identified several analytical lenses that have been incorporated into a HLS holistic analysis to better understand the root causes of poverty. These analytical lenses include basic needs, a human rights perspective, civil participation and action, gender and the policy environment. These various lenses are significantly influencing the future directions of CARE programming.
In the end, the HLS framework is helping CARE make strategic choices about where to concentrate its limited resources and how to leverage its comparative advantages to achieve the most positive and lasting change. It is through these efforts that CARE will contribute to the global effort to end poverty.