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M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
M&E for GlobalGiving grantees
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M&E for GlobalGiving grantees

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Making M&E accessible for grassroots organizations

Making M&E accessible for grassroots organizations

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  • Keywords: monitoring, evaluation, M&E, GlobalGiving, Jennifer Lentfer, how-matters.org, international aid, philanthropy, organizational development, grassroots organizations, community-based organizations
  • to interact with fellow participants focus on sharing experiences and problem-solving
  • Not just an extraneous tool Most important – INCREASED CONFIDENCE articulate their successes and challenges and to mobilize resources to sustain their programs Help grantees tell their own story - build c onfidence in asking “so what?”
  • Baggage exists – inaccessibility of M&E paradigm
  • 13 M&E – research discipline, project-based Example: Would YOU know how to measure % of children age 6-59 months below -2 z score wt/ht?
  • by supporting organizational development where they are - i.e. having realistic and appropriate expectations depending on the capacity level of a partner Can’t stress the importance of realizing the difference between your donors’ information needs and those of your grantees. Though inexorably linked, strengthening the capacity of grantee-partners to monitor and evaluate their programs is not equivalent to fulfilling Firelight’s information needs about our own theory of change and advocacy. Therefore, the two initiatives will inform each other, but be carried out separately.
  • Impact - such a loaded & over-used word communities can see ‘impact’ even if it’s difficult to describe…
  • Monitoring is a process that systematically observes events and activities related to our work. When we monitor, we gather information regularly to check our progress. Evaluation , on the other hand, is the assessment of a program’s relevance, efficiency, effectiveness, and impact on the target population and beneficiaries. We evaluate periodically .
  • Exercise – read for response A child’s height and weight. Whether children are growing at a normal rate. The effectiveness of home-based care. The number of weekly visits to chronically ill people. An increase/ decrease in food security. The number of families planting improved crop varieties. The number of people trained in human rights. Whether reports of human rights abuses have increased or decreased and why.
  • This slide shows the trade-offs in cost and complexity among different methods of data collection. Can also think of M&E as regular/routine (part of everyday duties such as beneficiary records) or special/periodic (which require additional time, resources, planning such as household surveys) Consider the level of financial/human resources available. The effort expended should match the improvement in decision-making.
  • These are abstract concepts - but understandable. Your logic does not equal your partners - other ways of knowing exist that are not empirical Aims to build grantees’ capacity to measure their own progress in a more meaningful way. Training is practical and experiential, to apply principles to organizations’ day-to-day work.
  • M&E is about testing assumptions - that should be the new definition of building “evidence” Indicators - completely theoretical concept
  • EXERCISE Healthier children Children receive more nutritious food School feeding Children weight and height increased HIV+ people visited in their homes HIV+ people have increased BMI and ART adherence HIV+ people live longer Home-based care for HIV+ people Farmers oriented on improved crop varieties Extension services offered to farmers Increased food security More farmers harvesting improved varieties Community members trained in human rights Human rights more widely upheld Increased reporting of human rights violations Human rights training
  • , e.g. who is responsible, when and how often it is needed, how feedback will be shared, etc M&E doesn’t need to be complicated. Use a mix of quantitative (numerical, precise) and qualitative (in-depth, aspects of people’s lives) methods to understand your beneficiaries more fully. This will give us an improved and deeper understandings of how our programs are affecting the lives of the people we serve. 
  • A ssume nothing – transport (road and water), recordkeeping skills, volunteer staff, basic planning, beneficiary selection, funding insecurity, illiteracy, large catchment areas, financial mgmt the first issue each org different, different capacities/types of programming (e.g. orgs with smaller #s of case work vs. community mobilization) Not surprising considering output-level results are easier to comprehend and directly related to day-to-day activities. Outcomes is the new part.
  • already overburdened workloads A ssume nothing – transport (road and water), recordkeeping skills, volunteer staff, basic planning, beneficiary selection, funding insecurity, illiteracy, large catchment areas, financial mgmt the first issue
  • it’s about internalizing the importance of M&E – shifts in organizational culture from emergency/crisis mode to planning & reflection  More important than standardized administrative procedures, M&E activities constitute an informed process of reflection . Ultimately, M&E must be a learning/management tool for an organization. Process of transformation to a learning organization does not happen overnight. What happens within the organization is the most important factor in “institutionalizing” reflective practices.
  • It’s not about the indicators. It’s about reflection and learning . Sing your own praises!
  • Transcript

    • 1. Making M&E Accessible to Grassroots Organizations Webinar presented to GlobalGiving grantees DRAFT 17 May 2011 Jennifer Lentfer of www.how-matters.org
    • 2. Acknowledgements & Thanks Child-focused groups in Lesotho in an M&E training developed specifically for community-based organizations by Insideout/Otherwise. Supported by Firelight Foundation. Photo credit: J. Lentfer
    • 3. Webinar Overview <ul><li>Discussion of M&E in the international aid sector </li></ul><ul><li>Engage in practical exercises to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Identify guiding principles for M&E activities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Identify how key M&E concepts and practicalities can be better understood and utilized by grassroots orgs </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Sharing of challenges and practical advice </li></ul>
    • 4. Expected Outcomes of Webinar <ul><li>RECOGNITION OF THE VALUE OF M&E </li></ul><ul><li>Know why it’s vital to think about the ‘ So what’s? ’ of what you do. </li></ul><ul><li>Learn how to use M&E data to adapt and improve programs. </li></ul><ul><li>Be able to share your success stories and learn from mistakes. </li></ul><ul><li>BE ABLE TO WRITE BETTER REPORTS </li></ul><ul><li>See how monitoring can be linked to your day-to-day work. </li></ul><ul><li>Build commitment to M&E from the beginning of an initiative. </li></ul><ul><li>STRENGTHENED COLLABORATION </li></ul><ul><li>Increased opportunities for engagement, networking and advocacy with government and other local stakeholders </li></ul><ul><li>Strengthened relationships with donors </li></ul>
    • 5. M&E? RESULTS? FEAR Policing SCRUTINY PRESSURE! End of Funding? Confusion DISTRUST BURDEN
    • 6. Monitoring & Evaluation: The International Development Paradigm Objectives Statements Performance Indicator Statements Measurement Methods / Data Sources Goal Strategic Objectives Intermediate Results Outputs Activities Critical Assumptions
    • 7. TRUE OR FALSE? 1. A key purpose of M&E is to help organizations assess achievements. 5. The results of grassroots organizations’ work is easy to measure. 3. M&E activities will automatically lead to improved programming. 7. “Knowing” is most accurate when you experience something firsthand. 9. The human dimensions of community work are more important than the numbers. EXERCISE
    • 8. Jennifer’s Guiding Principles in M&E <ul><li>Nurture strong, sustainable grassroots organizations. </li></ul><ul><li>Meet groups “where they are.” </li></ul><ul><li>Build partners’ ability and confidence to monitor and evaluate their own work. </li></ul><ul><li>Peer-to-peer technical assistance is most effective. </li></ul>
    • 9. Jennifer’s Guiding Principles in M&E <ul><li>Organizations are already monitoring their work. </li></ul><ul><li>Perfect numbers are not our goal. </li></ul><ul><li>Impact is NOT easy to prove due to: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Timeframe </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Causality and attribution </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>M&E activities should never detract from the work at hand, which is serving families and communities. </li></ul><ul><li>Remember, the purpose of a </li></ul><ul><li>home visit is to: </li></ul><ul><li>Build personal relationships </li></ul><ul><li>Serve the community </li></ul><ul><li>Obtain information about the family </li></ul><ul><li>So that the visit can result in: </li></ul><ul><li>Being responsive to the family’s needs </li></ul><ul><li>Information collected on your indicators </li></ul>
    • 10. M&E: What’s the Difference? Monitoring Evaluation Ongoing process Event that occurs periodically Recordkeeping/Tracking Activities Analyzing results Observing trends Assessing impact Mainly descriptive, recording inputs, outputs, and activities (e.g. How many children received supplementary school feeding?) More analytical and examines processes (e,g. Did implementing school feeding successfully increase attendance levels?) Allows us to make adjustments or corrective actions in a project Informs future programming for all stakeholders Data collection is part of day-to-day management & activities Additional, special data may be collected using research methodologies Is objective and systematic Is objective and systematic
    • 11. M&E: What’s the Difference? EXERCISE We monitor… We evaluate… 1. A child’s height and weight. 1. Whether children are growing at a normal rate. 2. The number of weekly visits to chronically ill people. 2. The effectiveness of home-based care. 3. The number of families planting improved crop varieties. 3. An increase/ decrease in food security. 4.  The number of people trained in human rights. 4.  Whether reports of human rights abuses have increased or decreased and why.
    • 12. Choosing M&E Methods Cost Complexity Existing records (e.g. household lists) Routine statistics Focus groups Specific sample surveys Key informant interviews Observation Special or ’point’ studies Keep expectations realistic.
    • 13. Making M&E Accessible De-technicalize language. ROADMAP TO MONITORING What are we trying to change? Where do we want to get to? How are we going to get there? What do we expect to happen along the way? OUTPUT OUTCOME IMPACT How do we know we are on the right road? problem analysis goals, objectives strategy, activities RESULTS indicators, baseline, targets
    • 14. Making M&E Accessible OUTPUT OUTCOME IMPACT ACTIVITIES Have the activities taken place? The very first result of an activity. Organizations have direct control over this result. What happened next? Change of behavior in participants. Organizations have less control over this result. So what? Change at population/ societal level. Organizations have very little control, if any. RESULTS
    • 15. Results: which is which? OUTPUT Have the activities taken place? OUTCOME What happened next? IMPACT So what? ACTIVITY RESULTS Healthier children Children receive more nutritious food School feeding Children weight and height increased ?
    • 16. Results: which is which? OUTPUT Have the activities taken place? OUTCOME What happened next? IMPACT So what? ACTIVITY RESULTS HIV+ people visited in their homes Home-based care for HIV+ people HIV+ people live longer HIV+ people have increased BMI and ART adherence ?
    • 17. Results: which is which? OUTPUT Have the activities taken place? OUTCOME What happened next? IMPACT So what? ACTIVITY RESULTS Farmers oriented on improved crop varieties More farmers harvesting improved varieties Extension services offered to farmers Increased food security ?
    • 18. Results: which is which? OUTPUT Have the activities taken place? OUTCOME What happened next? IMPACT So what? ACTIVITY RESULTS Community members trained in human rights Human rights training Human rights more widely upheld Increased reporting of human rights violations ?
    • 19. Determining Results EXERCISE
    • 20. Data Collection Tips <ul><li>Know what information you need BEFORE you start collecting data. </li></ul><ul><li>Plan how data will be reported, reviewed, and used. </li></ul><ul><li>Simple exercises and forms are often the most useful. </li></ul><ul><li>Recognize your responsibility towards the community by involving them and respecting individuals’ rights. </li></ul><ul><li>Keep good records.  </li></ul>If you collect, use and analyze information appropriately, you will be documenting the eyes and voices of the community about how your programs affect their lives.
    • 21. Making M&E Accessible <ul><li>Collect </li></ul><ul><li>Compile </li></ul><ul><li>Compare </li></ul><ul><li>Share </li></ul>Simple Steps in Data Analysis Staff of child-focused organizations in Lesotho engaged in data compilation during in M&E training developed by Insideout/Otherwise and supported by Firelight Foundation. Photo credit: J. Lentfer
    • 22. Challenges? What is your organization facing? What do you anticipate? Staff of child-focused organizations in Zambia engaged in practical exercises during M&E training developed specifically for community-based organizations by Insideout/Otherwise. Supported by Firelight Foundation. Photo credit: J. Lentfer
    • 23. Challenges <ul><li>Lack of resources to devote to M&E (time, staff, $) </li></ul><ul><li>Buy-in at organizational level – support of management/board, staff turnover, quality of shared learning </li></ul><ul><li>Management issues within organizations - planning (strategic, workplans), human resources management, budgeting/financial management </li></ul><ul><li>Outcome indicators are often the most difficult to identify </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of “baseline” data for comparison purposes </li></ul><ul><li>Anxiety about M&E remains – pleasing donors </li></ul>
    • 24. Challenges: Reality Check “ Absence of computers to process data and store the information so it can be easily accessed.” “ We now need to be able to cross the river more frequently.”
    • 25. What to focus on going forward <ul><li>Your organization clearly identifies strategies and intended outcomes of your work. </li></ul><ul><li> Monitoring is paired with your ongoing, day-to-day work . </li></ul><ul><li> Your organization has ownership of its monitoring framework, tools, and procedures. </li></ul><ul><li> Management/leaders makes changes in your organization’s programs and activities based on what is learnt. </li></ul><ul><li> Your organization shares what it learns with the people served. </li></ul><ul><li> Reports to your organization’s donors and other stakeholders are a more complete depiction of the outcomes of your work. </li></ul>
    • 26. Remember: G reat work does not equal great M&E. Poor M&E does not equal poor work. Good luck in your M&E efforts! THANK YOU

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