Economic Strengthening Toolkit

Date of Design: 
Land O’Lakes
Pathway Component: 
Agricultural Income, Food Production, Processing & Storage, Women’s Empowerment


Brief Description: Economic strengthening-focused interventions are market-driven and center on supporting, protecting, and improving livelihoods. The toolkit was developed to improve household income of people living with HIV through livelihood interventions along the dairy value chain in Ethiopia. The tool has been designed for customization and is intended to be adapted and applied across value chains and businesses. The toolkit applies an economic strengthening pathway-based approach that ensures that clients are provided with the support appropriate at a particular point in time to reduce vulnerability, promote resilience, and enhance capacity to cope with shocks. 

Uses: The objectives of the economic strengthening toolkit are to: 

  • Provide the necessary tools and instructions to implement various economic strengthening interventions
  • Provide economic strengthening tool templates for adaptation to different contexts and value chains 

Tool Components: The economic strengthening tools included in the toolkit are: 

  1. Assessing Household Vulnerability
  2. Asset Recovery and Protection
  3. Community Resource Directory
  4. Identifying Demand-Driven and Market-Based Solutions
  5. Income Generation and Enterprise Development
  6. Accessing Finance


Number of Staff Required:  Not specified.

Time: The time required will depend on which sections of the toolkit are utilized. The Household Vulnerability Assessment is a recommended starting point to determine what type of support households will need; subsequent sections of the toolkit can be selected and utilized based on the assessment results. 

Cost of Assessment: Not specified; this will depend on the tools selected. 

Training: The toolkit was developed to build the capacity of organizations already serving people in need of livelihoods support. No specific training is suggested as it assumes staff are already working in this area and the toolkit provides the templates and explanation needed. Enumerators would likely need some training to use the templates properly. 

Geographic Targeting: The assessment is conducted at household level; geographic targeting will depend on programmatic objectives.

Type of Data Collection: This toolkit uses household surveys and key informant interviews. 

Degree of Technical Difficulty: Conducting the household vulnerability assessment should be relatively simple, as blank templates are provided. Interpreting the results and selecting the appropriate sections of the toolkit requires staff with significant previous experience in livelihoods/economic strengthening interventions. 

Complements other Resources: In some cases, the Economic Strengthening Toolkit refers to interventions (e.g., group savings and lending) without in-depth explanation of how to implement these programs. Here, the toolkit could be complemented by more specific intervention guidelines.

This summary is part of a larger resource called the Context Assessment Tool Locator.