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Thriving Providers Project Benefits Protection Toolkit

Thriving Providers Toolkit

About the Toolkit

The Benefits Protection Toolkit is a step-by-step guide to develop and integrate a benefits protection strategy into your Direct Cash Transfer (DCT) program design. It is recommended this toolkit be used at the early stages of the program design process for any new pilot or program, as the timelines to protect benefits can be long, and the mitigation strategies can also include changes to the program design.

In this toolkit, you’ll learn how to:

  • Assess the most common benefits your participants utilize.
  • Determine if you are using the IRS gift definition for your payment designation.
  • Use the Pilot Social Safety Net Benefits Matrix to assess risk and benefits impact.
  • Determine if you will pursue benefits waivers/ exemptions or policy change or if you will use other mitigation strategies within your pilot.
  • Conduct a landscape analysis
  • Identify the entity administering benefits and find a point of contact.
  • Build a plan of action. Get clear about what you are asking.
  • Seek feedback on your plan of action.
  • Execute your plan: begin outreach process.
  • Determine what alternative mitigation strategies are best for your pilot.
  • Develop a benefits education approach for your pilot.


This toolkit includes a set of customizable templates, letters, and other tools which should be downloaded and modified for your pilot and local context. This toolkit should be used alongside consultations with the communities directly impacted, who themselves deeply understand the complexity of navigating the benefits system, and other community stakeholders in the local context.

It is our hope that the toolkit will contribute to the growing body of policy research and tools available for pilot administrators across the country.

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Thriving Providers Project Benefits Protection Toolkit