12.1 Additional procedures for commodity distributions

  • All distribution areas have standardised scoops to measure commodity rations and individuals using the scoops have been properly trained. If a new commodity is provided or the ration level has changed, new scoops are supplied.
  • Calibrated scales are available for both recipients and monitors to verify the weights of commodity rations received.
  • Recipients should be advised in advance of any requirement on their part to bring containers for both dry and wet (vegetable oil) commodities.
  • Empty sacks/containers are available, if necessary.
  • Outside the actual distribution area, organise recipient population by administrative group (neighbourhood, camp sector, village, etc.) in the same manner as that used during registration and for planning. This will facilitate identifying recipient card numbers on tally and receipt sheets.
  • Further organise each administrative group by household size. It will be most efficient to process recipients by household size, in other words distribute to all one-member households, then on to all two-member households, and so forth.
  • Admit only ration card holders into the distribution area. As the recipients will have been organised according to household size, it will be easy to direct them to the proper distribution area where they will wait in the queue.
  • As recipients reach the front of the queue, they present their ration card to the distribution staff member (the tally clerk) who checks off that number on his/her tally sheet. The tally clerk should also inspect the ration card to ensure that it is genuine and that the household size on the card corresponds to the household size being processed at the moment.
  • The ration card is then presented to another distribution staff member (the puncher) who punches a hole or otherwise marks the card to indicate that the cardholder is receiving the ration. After punching, the card is returned to the cardholder.
  • The recipient enters the distribution area and collects their entitled ration. If more than one item or commodity is being distributed, they are generally distributed sequentially by different distribution individuals (scoopers).
  • Immediately upon exiting the distribution area, the recipient presents his/her ration card to the receipt clerk. The receipt clerk locates the cardholder’s name on the receipt sheet and verifies the household size on the card matches the household size on the sheet. The recipient signs or marks next to his/her name to indicate that rations were received and then leaves the distribution area.
  • On a random basis, request individual recipients to bring their rations to a weighing scale. Weigh each commodity separately and record weight along with the card number and household size. At least two people independent of the storage function must document they have witnessed and approved the weighing of commodity rations. This random weighing is conducted to ensure a proper ration size is being provided.
  • Distribution monitors examine all empty packaging (e.g. sacks, oil containers, cartons) to ensure that they are completely empty at the end of the distribution. All empty packaging is collected, recorded and disposed of in accordance with written directions from the Programme Manager (see Annex 19.17 Disposal of empty packaging).
  • All goods or commodity remaining at the end of the distribution are returned to stock and properly accounted for.
  • Tally clerks and receipt clerks calculate total recipients served and total quantity of goods or commodities distributed, from their respective sheets.

Ration cards usually have a series of numbers, starting from 1, printed either around the edge of the card or in a designated space. Each number corresponds to a specific distribution date, and the number is punched or marked to indicate that the card was processed during that distribution. When all the numbers have been punched, a new card is issued. Where online platform like LMMS and SCOPE are in use, the digital identification cards are used.

If ration cards are not available, consider issuing sequentially pre-numbered slips to the recipients.

  • The numbers should be controlled by the Programme Manager and correspond to numbers printed on tally and receipt sheets.
  • Distributions are only made to those presenting such numbered slips.
  • The slips are collected from each recipient when he or she receives their ration.

All collected slips are returned to the Programme Manager.