Targeting refers to the mechanisms that relief agencies use to ensure their assistance reaches the people who are in greatest need. A targeting strategy aims to concentrate the available set of resources (for example, food, skills, cash) where aid can have the greatest impact on meeting the needs of the affected men, women, boys & girls. Government and/or aid donors may try to dictate targeting according to their priorities, which may not correspond to the realities of the situation. In such circumstances, humanitarian agencies must advocate for fair targeting based on humanitarian principles and assessment of need.
CARE’s programme strategy and project designs should clearly identify CARE’s target groups. The selection of target groups for CARE’s assistance should be defined on the basis of need, taking care to ensure that CARE’s targeting strategy is consistent with programming principles and our commitment to gender equality in emergencies.
The first step in identifying CARE’s target groups is to identify the geographic focus of CARE’s response strategy. CARE’s strategy must define the geographic focus of CARE’s operations to:
- coordinate with other agencies to ensure maximum coverage and avoid duplication
- put in place appropriate operational plans
- ensure assistance is provided where it is needed most.
When deciding the geographic focus of CARE’s strategy, consider:
Where is the greatest need?
- What areas have been worst affected?
- What areas have the greatest identified need?
- What areas are normally the most vulnerable?
CARE’s capacity: Where can CARE have the greatest impact?
- Where does CARE already have capacity, including established presence, partners and infrastructure?
- Where can CARE feasibly launch new operations?
- Where is there an obligation to the community for CARE to assist?
Coordination: Where is there a lack of assistance?
- Where are other agencies, including government and local organisations, assessing or responding?
- What areas are being neglected?
Sometimes in an emergency response, blanket assistance is required at first for the whole disaster-affected population. However, within any population, factors of vulnerability affect the level of need of different groups. Assistance needs to be prioritised to ensure aid reaches those who need it most. The people who are in most need of assistance are usually the most vulnerable groups in the population. These will be CARE’s priority target groups.
CARE’s emergency response strategy must analyse and identify factors of vulnerability in the population, and define broad target groups appropriate to the levels of need, vulnerability and available resources. Assumptions should not be made as to who the most vulnerable are, as every situation is different and must be properly analysed using many different lenses (for example, gender, livelihoods, cultural).
Detailed guidelines on developing a targeting strategy are available at Annex 5.7.
In the development of a targeting strategy, CARE gives special consideration to the needs of globally recognised categories of vulnerable groups, which include women, children, internally displaced persons (IDPs), refugees, people with disabilities, the elderly, people living with HIV/AIDS and ethnic minorities. Section 11.4 has been adapted from the WFP Emergency field operations pocketbook and Sphere. It lists issues that should be considered in planning and managing operations to ensure that the special needs of vulnerable groups are met as best as possible. Note that not all vulnerable groups are included in this section.
|Women (in all population groups)||
|Children (in all population groups)||
|Internally displaced persons||
|People living with HIV/AIDS||
|People with disabilities||