Consultancy for ECHO Project Evaluation
The Danish Refugee Council assists refugees and internally displaced persons across the globe: we provide emergency aid, fight for their rights, and strengthen their opportunity for a brighter future. We work in conflict-affected areas, along the displacement routes, and in the countries where refugees settle. In cooperation with local communities, we strive for responsible and sustainable solutions. We work toward successful integration and – whenever possible – for the fulfilment of the wish to return home.
The Danish Refugee Council was founded in Denmark in 1956 and has since grown to become an international humanitarian organization with more than 7,000 staff and 8,000 volunteers. Our vision is a dignified life for all displaced.
All of our efforts are based on our value compass: humanity, respect, independence and neutrality, participation, and honesty and transparency.
The duty station will be covering Ninewa (Mosul, Qayyarrah, Hamam Alil, West and North Ninewa); Salah-al Din (Tikrit, Al Alam, Baiji, Shirqat); Diyala; Anbar (Amiriyah Fallujah, Ramadi); Baghdad
From the beginning of 2014, the protracted internal fighting against armed opposition groups in Iraq, notably the Islamic State in Iraq and Levant (ISIL), has affected many parts of the country that includes Mosul, Salah-Al-din, Ninewa, Baghdad and Anbar governorates resulting in massive deterioration in the humanitarian situation. This is happening in a country that is already hosting Syrian refugees. An estimated 3 million Iraqi people have been displaced across the country according to IOM’s June 2017 displacement tracking matrix1. The number of internally displaced persons is expected to increase further due to military actions on different fronts (most recently in Mosul offensive against ISIL).
Internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Iraq live in both camp and non-camp settings across the country. IDPs living in non-camp settings often live in temporary shelters in schools, unfinished buildings, mosques and churches collectively, and some are hosted by relatives. Secondary and tertiary displacement of these IDPs has become a norm, for multiple reasons, and there have been notable tensions within and between communities in some locations. The conflict situation combined with existing socio-economic barriers has exposed displaced families (both IDP and refugee), but especially women and children to several protection risks that require comprehensive response.
In response to protection risks, DRC is implementing multi-sector responses to address protection risks of vulnerable displaced women and children across the country that includes distribution of Core relief items/Non-Food Items, Food rations, WASH, shelter, Livelihoods, CCCM and Protection. DRC is a protection agency and the protection strategy focuses on both mainstreaming and stand -alone protection programmes to address high protection concerns.
In line with the ECHO HIP 2017 and the HRP 2017 objectives, under this project DRC continued to provide an integrated emergency response to newly displaced, underserved and conflict affected populations in hard to reach areas in Anbar, Baghdad, Diyala, Ninewa and Salah-al Din governorates. The principle objective of the project is that “Newly displaced, conflict- affected, underserved and neglected households are able to meet their critical basic needs and access basic services as well as protection support through emergency assistance.” The project aims to enhance protection and coordination functions at the national level and conflict-affected households will also benefit from improved WASH, shelter, and protection conditions through protection response, shelter upgrades, CRI assistance and rehabilitation of water infrastructure in hard to reach and or newly accessible areas. The project will also build the capacities of national authorities to better support and manage formal camps, while applying the same principles of CCCM to interventions in informal settlements to enhance the living conditions of these marginalized populations. The intervention also aims to address the protection concerns of vulnerable individuals in Anbar, Salah-al Din and Ninewa governorates by facilitating access to basic services and providing targeted assistance. Finally, the project will host the Rapid Protection Assessment (RPA) mechanism in Iraq, allowing for dedicated staff and resources to facilitate and increase actionable qualitative data on locations requiring an RPA.
The €5 million project (increased from an initial budget of €4 million) had an 11-month duration, from 1st May 2017 until 31st March 2018 (increased from an initial 9-month duration), targeting 220,920 (increased from an initial target of 173,760) individuals, with six results areas:
Result 1 will support and strengthen countrywide protection responses and accountability through the hosting of the national level Protection cluster-co lead.
Result 2 will aim to address WASH and Shelter needs of conflict-affected and underserved household (HH) residing in informal settlements through an integrated WASH/Shelter and CCCM approach with a focus on the south-central governorates of Iraq as well as those displaced as a result of the ongoing Mosul offensive.
Result 3 DRC will support national authorities with technical advice to strengthen the implementation, and coordination of CCCM activities in both formal and informal sites and allow DRC to continue its camp management support of the expanding Qayyarah Airstrip Camp.
Result 4 aims to strengthen conflict-affected communities’ ability to access targeted assistance in order to respond to protection concerns of vulnerable populations in Anbar, Salah-al Din and Ninewa.
Result 5 DRC will continue the Rapid Protection Assessment (RPA) mechanism in Iraq which allows for dedicated staff and resources to facilitate actionable qualitative data on locations requiring an RPA. The RPA serves as the main first line response for the National Protection Cluster, providing key initial evidence-based information to develop and support a protection response.
Result 6 will support Emergency Preparedness and Response for displacement in Mosul corridors through the preposition and distribution of core relief items (CRIs) and the rehabilitation of community water networks that has a direct impact at household level.
During the course of the project there were project modifications submitted on 5th July, 7th August, 27th Nov and 28th Feb. These were around expansion and scale up of certain components within a result, responses to new movement of IDPs, new activities, extending the implementation period, request for additional funds, target number of beneficiaries under the different results and in total. A summary of each modification request is provided as an annex.
2. EVALUATION OBJECTIVES
2.1 Broad Objective
The overall objective of this final evaluation is to review DRC’s ECHO supported multi-sector project focusing on the implementation strategy used, key achievements, challenges, lessons learnt and recommendations. This evaluation is expected to contribute to improvements in beneficiary targeting and support by formulating an understanding of what has worked well and what the challenges have been in the current project and in the current context, along with recommendations for improvement for continuation of similar work. This will inform programming decisions similar work as well as inform the overall response by DRC Iraq.
2.2 Specific Objectives
The evaluation will focus on assessing the standard evaluation criteria of relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, sustainability and impact, through standard evaluation questions and evaluation case studies on specific objectives as detailed below. Availability of data and time frame will shape the final evaluation contents.
Evaluate the effectiveness of the area-based approach, to understand whether it is beneficial, applicable, and useful.
Assess the relevance of our programming to thinking outside of the project cycle, and critically look at the operational context.
Assess the extent to which the project was guided by humanitarian principles, and what impact this had on the project delivery.
Assess beneficiary targeting criteria and whether the right beneficiaries were reached.
Assess and highlight advocacy work at all levels within the project, noting what approaches worked well, where and why?
Assess the core challenges in the implementation of the project and how these could be overcome or addressed in future/similar work.
Document key lessons learnt in project implementation and provide key recommendations for future/similar work.
3. EVALUATION KEY QUESTIONS
Please refer to the standard evaluation questions (annexed)
3.1 Area based approach (effectiveness)
Area based approaches should respond to evictions. Does it?
Can an area-based approach be used to capture referrals?
Is an area-based approach useful for organizations to use?
What are the links to community structures and the use of focal points?
o What has been our support to them?
o How involved do they feel?
o How can we improve engagement?
3.2 Responding to contextual changes (relevance)
What are the barriers to effective project implementation in our areas of work?
How well did we link the relevance of our activities to the (changing) context? For example, did we effectively respond to the increased rate of evictions and the different context we now work in compared to the context of when we started the project?
Is DRC’s long-term presence in some areas creating an added value in project design and beneficiary targeting? For example, is a clear stakeholder and power analysis understood by programme teams to improve service delivery, advocate for beneficiary rights and allow access without compromising humanitarian principles.
3.3 Application of humanitarian principles (efficiency)
What are the humanitarian principles which have guided our work?
Where have we not adhered to humanitarian principles?
Where have we shown commitment to humanitarian principles?
What principled stances have we taken that might have made us slow in delivery? For example, not accepting distribution lists from community leaders (which is something most other organizations do), as they might be biased, and instead doing our own assessments and vulnerability scoring.
3.4 Assisting the right beneficiaries (relevance, effectiveness, impact)
How do we do our targeting and are we targeting the right people?
Do we demonstrate evidence that we know how to properly target?
Should there be different approaches to targeting in different areas?
3.5 Documenting and reflecting on our advocacy work (effectiveness, impact)
What advocacy work have we done in the project? Unpack the different levels, from defending individual and group rights, to targeting key stakeholders for larger issues, to access challenges.
How can we better document our advocacy work and achievements?
How can we reflect upon what approaches worked and what didn’t, within a given context?
3.6 Assessing our approach and whether it was the right thing to do (effectiveness, relevance)
What were the key drivers which determined our approach?
o Did we plan our project based on needs assessment and research (such as contextual and power analysis), or were there other factors (such as donor or sector) which dictated our approach? For example, rather than delivering sealing off kits (SOKs), would it have been better to do a cash or voucher approach?
o What would beneficiaries prefer?
o What would likely happen if we did this, i.e. would the cash or vouchers be used as intended?
How does implementation of the same activities differ between locations?
o What are the key factors of success in a particular area, and can these approaches be replicated in other areas?
o How does use of the Risk Assessment Site Priority (RASP) differ by location? What can be learned and replicated from where this works well?
What interventions have led to significant cost savings, and what can we learn from such approach? For example, in Mosul work on the water treatment plan reduced the need for water trucking, but such work was not recommended by donors.
Was the project flexible for change and did DRC internal governance allow for flexibility? For example, programming in Shirquat seems to have been delayed due to internal governance.
3.7 Value for money (efficiency, sustainability)
For the WASH intervention what was the cost per beneficiary and how does the cost compare to the sustainability of the intervention? For example, Sealing-off Kits might not cost much, but might not be sustainable. Infrastructure on the other hand has a high cost, but potentially many beneficiaries, and longer sustainability. What is the recommended approach for future WASH interventions?
3.8 Lessons Learnt and recommendations
What key lessons can we draw from this project?
What were the recommendations from the previous project evaluation? What (if anything) did we do
differently as a result of the previous project evaluation recommendations?
What were the critical challenges during implementation, how were they addressed and how can we ensure to effectively respond to such future challenges? For example, in shelter, there was a requirement to select the cheapest supplier, which did not offer the highest quality of work.
What were the key strengths of the project implementation and can/how can they be replicated or continued?
What are the recommendations for continuation of the project, or future, similar work?
4. SCOPE OF WORK
The main tasks of this consultancy include but are not limited to the following activities:
Carry out a desk review of relevant project documents and the different sources of secondary data.
Develop an inception report detailing evaluation design and methodology, tools, workplan schedule and budget to carry out the assessment. Include a sampling and data collection design where necessary.
Conduct data collection, analysis and reporting using appropriate tools and approaches.
Prepare a draft evaluation report and share with DRC for comments and feedback.
Conduct a debriefing session with DRC Iraq to present key findings of the evaluation.
Submit a final evaluation report to DRC Iraq, including all raw data, original field notes for all in-depth interviews conducted.
DRC Iraq has sole ownership of all the final data and any findings shall not be reproduced or shared without the express written permission of DRC.
5. EVALUATION METHODOLOGY
The consultant will design an appropriate evaluation methodology based on a firm understanding of the expectations of the terms of reference as well as consultations with DRC Iraq Monitoring and Evaluation, Head of Programmes and project focal point. The evaluation methodology should use a multi-method approach to data collection to provide both the qualitative and quantitative picture as well data triangulation where possible. The methodology should include desk studies and field visits. The field visits should include interviews with target groups and key informants (beneficiaries, PoC, local leaders and authorities, local and International NGOs and donor representatives).
6. EVALUATION DELIVERABLES
The ultimate deliverable of this consultancy will be an evaluation report presenting key findings as per the defined evaluation criteria. For the purposes of managing the evaluation process, the following interim deliverables are expected from the consultant:
1. Inception report detailing evaluation design, methodology, tools, workplan and budget.
2. Draft evaluation report presenting the findings for comments.
3. Presentation of evaluation findings to DRC senior and key staff.
4. Final evaluation report incorporating comments from DRC. The evaluation report should include the following sections as minimum requirements:
Table of contents
Acronyms and abbreviations
Introduction including purpose of the evaluation
Description of the project intervention
Evaluation scope and objectives
Evaluation approach and methods
Key findings and evidence based conclusions on each of the sub-components, as outlined above
Annexes –including TOR, framework/workplan, tools used, bibliography
5. Presentation –PowerPoint on key evaluation results and recommendations
6. Copies of datasets used in the evaluation process.
The reports will be reviewed for quality and final payments will be made upon submission of a satisfactory evaluation report that meets evaluation quality standards.
The evaluation should aim to focus on Anbar, Shirqat, Mosul, Qayarrah Airstrip Camp . Field visits of the consultant may be limited by both security, access and visa restrictions.
The evaluation is expected to commence on 1st May 2018 and will take a maximum of 20 days which includes desk review, preparation, data collection, and report writing.
9. ROLE OF DRC IRAQ AND THE CONSULTANT
a. DRC Iraq
DRC Iraq will provide logistical support to the consultant while in Iraq, access to programme documents and will be the link between the Consultant and targeted communities and partners. DRC will also review the consultant’s proposal, tools and evaluation report.
b. The Consultant
The consultant will be responsible for all aspects of the entire evaluation process that includes travel and permit applications, evaluation preparation, data collection and report writing. The Consultant will also present the findings to DRC senior management. In addition, the Consultant will be responsible for all other responsibilities stipulated in other sections of this proposal.
About the Consultant
The Consultant is expected to meet the following criteria in order to be eligible for this work
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