The Alchemy Project began in 2001 as a pilot program to explore whether income generating interventions do support the livelihoods of forcibly displaced people. Our long-term goals were to work with humanitarian agencies and donors to develop programs and policies that support the livelihoods of displaced people during and after their displacement. In the short term, we set about establishing evidence about the impact of different kinds of ‘income support’ programs, using an approach in which we worked directly with field agencies. Our two-pronged approach was to fund and support field agencies implementing a variety of income generating programs, then work with them to conduct impact research of mutual interest. We were particularly interested in understanding the possibilities for using microfinance services in displacement contexts. We also supported displaced people with scholarships and funds for training.