MasterCard to expand digital aid distribution services

Source: MasterCard

Tens of millions of people around the world receive vital humanitarian aid every year and the need continues to grow exponentially.

In many cases, they are not only faced with an immediate crisis, but they also lack the financial services to guard against future risk as they attempt to build better lives.

MasterCard today announced at the World Humanitarian Summit that it plans to expand its aid distribution services with the launch of MasterCard Humanitarian Aid Solutions, which leverages MasterCard Aid Network, MasterCard SendTM and prepaid capabilities, as well as partnerships in the financial services industry. Through the new solution, MasterCard aims to provide beneficiaries with faster access to various forms of aid, including digital cash and vouchers, from non-governmental organizations (NGO) through a single card.

NGOs will be able to deliver more secure and efficient aid and recipients will have access to basic financial tools that create dignity, empowerment and economic opportunity after an immediate crisis is over. World Vision, which has been partnering with MasterCard to improve humanitarian aid delivery via digital identity and electronic payment technology, plans to pilot the new solution.

“MasterCard has been working with international agencies for the past several years to help transform aid delivery,” said Paul Musser, vice president, International Development, MasterCard. “The expanded services we are creating deliver on the insights from these activities. We will be able to eliminate the need for beneficiaries to have multiple cards to access aid from different NGOs, while providing them with an infrastructure for long-term financial inclusion.”

MasterCard Humanitarian Aid Solutions will provide an open and flexible network to make complex digital requirements simple for partners to implement. By expanding the MasterCard Aid Network to leverage other MasterCard products, services and partnerships, recipients will be able to have one card with both a reloadable prepaid account and their MasterCard Aid points account. NGOs will be able to use MasterCard Send to disburse additional funds whenever needed, quickly and securely.

In addition, partners will able to tap into the data analytics capabilities of MasterCard Advisors for valuable insights to help them drive greater operational efficiencies.

“As part of the development of its cash-first approach for its humanitarian responses, World Vision aims to launch a pilot in 2016 of the MasterCard Humanitarian Aid Solution coupled with the Last Mile Mobile Solution,” said George Fenton, Director of Humanitarian Innovation and Partnering of World Vision. “This will allow World Vision and MasterCard to explore beneficiary identity, commodity distribution, and cash access best practices, all on a single card. World Vision aspires to preposition this combination of services so that they can deploy it globally, empowering those in need and increasing aid transparency.”

This expanded service continues the company’s effort to leverage its core expertise to create highly scalable and impactful programs with the development community, including the recently announced partnerships with World Vision and UN Women. Since its launch in September 2015, MasterCard Aid Network has been rolled out by Mercy Corps, Save the Children, and World Vision in countries including Ethiopia, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, the Philippines and Yemen.

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