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Consultant to Undertake Final Evaluation for Promoting Rural Opportunities for Children’s Empowerment, Education and Development (PROCEED) Project

Consultant to Undertake Final Evaluation for Promoting Rural Opportunities for Children’s Empowerment, Education and Development (PROCEED) Project

1.Background

The PROCEED project implemented by Save the Children (SC) in Thailand is funded by a private donor and aims to empower children, especially the most at-risk girls and boys from ethnic minorities including stateless children, and provide them with knowledge and skills on child rights, child protection, life skills and sexual reproductive health. The project’s duration is for 4 years, from 2017-2020, in 2 districts of Chiang Rai and Mae Hong Son. The project aim is, briefly, to reduce children’s’ risk of sex work, being abused or exploited, and being affected by early pregnancy.

SC works with four implementing partners in Chiang Rai and Mae Hong Son: 1) ECPAT Foundation, 2) Highland People Education and Development Foundation, in Chiang Rai, 3) Legal Status Network Foundation, and 4) The Life Skills Development Foundation, in Mae Hong Son. In order to assess and learn from the process, achievement, challenges, and the overall impact achieved, the final evaluation will be conducted for the purposes at the end point of the project.

At the core of the project’s approaches are the following components providing both preventive and responding measures:

Objective 1: To what extent has the PROCEED project empowered and educated children, especially children from ethnic minorities and stateless children, about child rights and reproductive health, in the targeted districts.

1.1 With the supports from Education Services Area Office (ESAO), schools in the targeted areas provide information and education on child rights and sexual, and reproductive health for children from grade 7 to grade 12.

 1.2 Children are provided conducive environments created for all children to organize groups and clubs where they can discuss about their rights, issues of concerns, voice their views in the targeted schools and their communities.

Objective 2: To improve access to social services to children from ethnic minorities and stateless children who are at risk or have entered into the sex business or are affected by early pregnancy in the targeted districts.

2.1 ESAO and schools, in targeted areas, provide counselling/guidance services, adequate information and referral services to children from grade 7 to 12 who are at risk or affected by the identified risks, to appropriate services.

2.2 Stateless children, children from ethnic minorities and their families have accessed to quality and gender sensitive basic services.

Detailed information on projects and their planned outcomes, outputs and indicators can be found in project documents.

The PROCEED project, started in 2016, will end in December 2020 and Save the Children in Thailand is thus seeking to recruit an independent consultant to lead and undertake the final evaluation. External support for the process is particularly important given the need to assess and learn from the process, achievements and challenges encountered in the project.  

2.Purpose and scope of this consultancy:

Save the Children Thailand intends to conduct a final evaluation of the PROCEED project to assess the impact of the project and capture main achievements, challenges, as well as documenting best practice examples and lesson learnt. The evaluation report and findings will inform future similar projects. The evaluation will also to ensure accountability towards the donor and beneficiaries of the project. The evaluation report is expected to become a useful resource for all stakeholders. The evaluation will be conducted so as to document how the project adapted to the characteristics of each of the project implementing areas and situations.

The final evaluation aims to answer the following questions:

Effectiveness:

1. To what extent have the planned objectives in the logical framework of the project been reached per indicator and disaggregated by gender?

2. To what extent have the project activities contributed to the overall goal? Was the project effective in building capacity of social/education/health service providers to protect and provide quality services to children in implementing area? Was the project effective in building ability of children to protect themselves, their peers? Was the project effective in improving assessment to social/education/health service of children and their family/care giver?

3. What were the factors influencing the achievement of the objective of the project?

4. what opportunities for collaboration were utilised and contributed to increase effectiveness?

Efficiency:

5. How efficient was the delivery of project, looking at both expenditure, and implementation of activities?

6. Was the project implementation be cost-effective, while not compromising quality and results?

7. What could have been opportunities within the project to reach more beneficiaries within the available budget or to reduce costs while reaching at least the same number of beneficiaries without compromising quality and results?

8. Were the activities implemented in a timely manner against the project plans?

Relevance/Impact:

9. How relevant were the objectives and activities implemented by the project in addressing adolescence pregnancy, sexual exploitation in children, and statelessness?

10. To what extent were the project beneficiaries reached?

11. How did beneficiaries perceive the relevance of the project and how did the activities improve their lives? Are there any stories of change?

12. How did the collaboration between Save the Children, implementing partners, and strategic partners contribute to appropriate response to specific needs and priorities of the beneficiaries??

13. To what extent was project able to adapt and provide appropriate response to context change and emerging local needs and the priorities of beneficiaries?

14. What is the impact or effect of the project in proportion to the overall situation of the target group or those effected?

15. Did the activities delivered by project meet the needs and expectations of the beneficiaries? What do beneficiaries feel could be improved in contribution to achieve project’s goals and objectives or help improving local capacity? 

Quality:

16. How was the project implementation monitored? (i.e. internal monitoring, evaluation, accountability, learning (MEAL) and quality assurance mechanism)?

17. what tools/mechanism were utilised to increase project quality?

18. How did project fulfill accountability to children, both girls and boys – consultations with children, information sharing, child friendly feedback and complaints mechanisms, etc?

Visibility:

19. What measures ensured visibility of the project’s added value towards beneficiaries and strategic partners?

 Learning:

20. Which of the interventions, approaches, and modalities/strategies have been most effective according to Save the Children, implementing partners, and strategic partners?

21. Is there any substantial evidence about how project learning were generated and applied to improve the delivery or effectiveness or efficiency of activities?

22. How did the different actors/stakeholders learn from these experience?

23. What could have been improved or changed when we look back at the last three years of the project?

Sustainability:

24. To what extent do key decision makers and stakeholders, e.g. project partners and local community, feel ownership of the project?  how do they envisage the sustainability of the project? Please provide concrete answers 

25. Will the change caused by the project continue beyond the life of the project?

26. How has the project worked with partners/stakeholders to increase their capacity in a sustainable way?

Complementarity and Harmonization:

27. Are there any concrete examples of successful models of collaboration of Save the Children with stakeholders, both in local and national level, not just in terms of avoiding duplication but increasing complementarity and integrated activities affecting the reach and impact on beneficiaries?   

Gender sensitivity

28. Have beneficiaries (youths, parents, teachers, communities, for example) increased awareness and improved attitudes related to gender equality?

29. To what extent has the project strengthened the capacities of partner organisations to

provide gender sensitive services?

3. Evaluation Methodology:

An independent consultant will be recruited to lead this final evaluation. The following is the outline of a suggested process; however, it is expected that this will be further refined by the consultant:

Literature/ Desk review:

  • Review of project documents and background information,
  • Development and review of the survey/interview tools to be used for data collection,
  • Development of sampling methodology to assess the progress of project;

Field Work:

  • Leading the administering of data collection, including training of numerators (if applicable),
  • Conducting a series of interviews with key informant or/and focus group discussions with beneficiaries and, stakeholders including children, parents, teachers, staff of implementing partners, SC staff, and government officials;

Data Processing, Analysis and Reporting:

  • Discussion on preliminary findings with formulation of recommendations with SC staff,
  • Draft Report in Thai and Final Report in English,
  • Presentation on key findings.

The evaluation shall be undertaken based on the Save the Children International requirements and must be in line with Save the Children’s ethical guideline (Annex II) . The report will be evaluated according to the evaluation quality scoring tool (Annex III).

4.Target areas and groups

The assessment targets children, schools, community, local government agencies as the main informants. The field work will take place in Chiang Rai at Mae Fah Luang and Mae Jan District, and in Mae Hong Son province at Pang Ma Pa and Sob Meai/Mae Sa Riang District.

5. Timeframe

The consultant will be required to dedicate time to this consultancy work during October to December 2020 period, subject to the requirements and agreements with Save the Children.

6. Schedule and deliverables

Deliverables

Timeframe

Remarks

Inception report and work plan

  • Mapping of available data and plan for data collection
  • Draft of assessment framework
  • Draft of assessment tools
  • Consultation meeting with Save the Children project team

10 days after confirmation of contract

Desk review process: Save the Children will review and provide feedback on the first draft within 5 working days.

Submission of finalized Inception report and planning with PROCEED project team

October 2020

Save the Children will review the updates (and discuss if needed) for its approval

Data collection and consultation with key stakeholders in targeted areas

November 2020

 

Presentations of preliminary findings to Save the Children

November 2020

Presentation file shared with Save the Children at least 3 days prior to the presentation

First draft of reports with recommendations in Thai

December 2020

Save the Children will provide feedback on the first draft within 5 working days

Final draft of reports

  • Assessment summary report (1-2 page in English and Thai
  • Full written report in English and Thai (This can be complimented by report in any other form such as VDO interviewing children) The consultant should put the length of report at only 50 pages or less.

December 2020

 

All materials, including all RAW data sets, collected in the undertaking of the consultancy process should be submitted along with the final report.

 

7. Management of the consultancy:

The consultant(s) will managed by Save the Children’s PROCEED Project Coordinator, with technical support from other staff, who will provide inputs throughout the final evaluation process including on the proposed methodology and data collection tools, analysis and interpretation and recommendations. Furthermore, the project team will be able to provide support for logistics and arrangements for data collection and consultation with stakeholders in remote areas. Support requirements for tasks such as translation and data entry will be discussed with the successful applicant.

8. Consultancy Fee

The consultant(s) is asked to propose the budget in Thai Baht. The financial competitiveness of the fee will be considered in the selection process. Costs involved in the assessment, such as materials, travel, translation and applicable taxes, should be included in the proposed budget.

9. Qualifications

    • At least master’s degree in child protection, research, social sciences or other related field
    • Expertise in qualitative and quantitative research methods
    • Strong qualitative and qualitative data analysis skills
    • Expertise in issues related to child protection or public health management is an asset
    • Experience working with non-profit organizations and familiarity with development work
    • Experience in conducing evaluation in multicultural, multilingual and sensitive context will be an asset
    • Thai/English language proficiency
    • Ability to work within strict deadlines

10. Submissions for the consultancy

The submission must address the terms of reference and include:

    • The resume of the lead candidate and team (if any)
    • A cover letter explaining the interest and suitability
    • Assessment plan and budget proposal including research methodology and timeline (5 pages maximum)
    • A detailed budget in USD and THB as specify in the consultant fee section

11. Close date for submissions:

Applicant (Firms, Individual Supplier) should submit their interest by 25 September 2020 before 17.00 pm. Submissions should be addressed to THA_Procurement_BKK@savethechildren.org

12. Budget Range: THB 300,000-400,000

  • Please propose the price with breakdown budget i.e. Professional fee, travelling/transportation cost to targeted areas (Mae Hong Son and Chiang Rai), Meeting Cost and others if any.
  • Expectation from this proposal: Methodology presented to conduct final evaluation, reliability and experiences of working in this field.
  • Document Submission:
      • For Company: (1) Office registration; (2) Scan of ID card; (3) Bank details; (4) VAT Registration –(ภพ20); (5) Company profile; and (6) Proposal/Quotation with the profession fee/rate of each activity
      • For Individual/freelance: (1) Copy of ID card; (2) Bank details; (3) Individual profile; (4) Proposal/Quotation with the profession fee/rate of each activity

Annex I: PROCEED Log Frame and other project documents

Annex II: Save the Children’s ethical guideline

Before undertaking any monitoring and evaluation activity with children or adults an ethical assessment should be undertaken by the Country Office. Where appropriate, approval for an activity should be obtained from all relevant ethical or institutional review boards in-country prior to the commencement of the activity.
As per the minimum standards, at each of these stages the responsible individual or office must:

  • Make sure the information gathering activity is necessary and justified:
    • Make sure that the purpose of the activity is clearly defined
    • Use the minimum sample size required to get statistically significant or valid results
    • Consider carefully the ethics of using a comparison or control group
  • Adopt informed consent and voluntary participation procedures:
    • Participants must give their informed consent (either written or verbal) to participate. When children are involved consent must also be granted from an appropriate adult. Consent forms should be field tested before use. Save the Children’s Practice Standards for child participation can give more guidance. 
    • Ensure that participants are well informed on the purpose of the activity and how the results will be disseminated
    • Make sure that individuals are informed that their participation is voluntary and that they have a choice to opt out
    • Confirm that participants understand the limits of the activity, in terms of benefits, and the next steps
    • Consider very carefully the use of incentives for participation and try not to use incentives where possible
  • Adopt appropriate confidentiality procedures, sensitive to children’s needs
    • Ensure that all persons involved in the activity, including data gatherers, data input staff, translators etc have received training on the confidentiality procedures and signed an appropriate confidentiality agreement
    • Confidentiality may need to be breached to provide immediate protection to a child. Children and adults must be made aware of the confidentiality procedures before being asked to provide any information.
  • Ensure that the costs to children of participating in activity do not outweigh the benefits, and ensure their safety at all times:
    • Adhere to Save the Children’s Child Safeguarding Policy
    • Adhere to Save the Children’s Practice Standards for Child Participation
    • Ensure that participation is in the children’s best interests and does them no harm
    • Ensure that information gathering with children is appropriate to their age and stage of development
    • Anticipate adverse consequences and develop appropriate responses
    • Be cautious and protective and undertake ethical checks as you proceed with any activity
    • Be sensitive and flexible; if situations change you must be prepared to stop or change an activity if ethical issues cannot be resolved
  • Be consultative
    • Determine whether local permission from community stakeholders or authorities is needed to proceed and adhere to any locally established institutional policies or guidelines for conducting research.    
    • Information about the activity must be provided to all stakeholders
    • Prepare local communities and explain the purpose and aims of the activity
  • Be sensible and prepared
    • Researchers have a responsibility to be mindful of cultural, religious, gender, and other significant differences within the research population in the planning, conduct, and reporting of the study findings
    • Ensure that those gathering information from children and/or vulnerable communities are adequately trained and ready to follow up or refer children who might need special attention as a result of research/investigation in sensitive themes.
  • Respect the dignity and autonomy of those participating in the activity
    • Ensure children and/or vulnerable communities are not simply used as a means to achieve research objectives 
    • Know that study participants have a right to remain anonymous.
  • Be accountable
    • Adhere to the International Accountability Charter
    • Make sure that a complaints and feedback mechanism is in place for children and adults participating in the activity
    • Ensure accuracy of information during analysis, interpretation and reporting.  And remain open to the findings of any study and do not allow vested interests to interfere
    • Make sure that proper acknowledgement is given at all stages, as appropriate.

Ethical issues

Every data gathering exercise involving children and vulnerable communities is theme or context specific therefore you must review all ethical considerations before undertaking a new activity.

Whenever we conduct research on people, the well-being of research participants must be our top priority. The research question is always of secondary importance. This means that if a choice must be made between doing harm to a participant and doing harm to the research, it is the research that is sacrificed.

In some cases, you may decide that you cannot proceed with a monitoring and evaluation activity because of ethical issues.  In this case you may need to re-design the activity or cancel it altogether if an ethical solution cannot be found.

Annex III: Evaluation report quality score tool

Annex IV: Table of Content for the evaluation report (suggestion)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements

Acronyms and Abbreviations

Glossary of Evaluation Terms

Executive Summary

1. Introduction and background

1.1 Introduction

1.2 Background

2. Evaluation purpose, scope and methodology

2.1 Purpose

2.2 Scope

2.3 Methodology

2.4 Limitations of the evaluation

3. Evaluation Finding

3.1 Effectiveness

3.2 Efficiency

3.3 Relevance/Impact

3.4 Quality

3.5 Visibility

3.6 Learning

3.7 Sustainability

3.8 Complementarity and harmonization

3.9 Gender sensitivity

4. Conclusions, recommendations and lessons learned

4.1 Conclusions

4.2 Recommendations

4.3 Lessons learned

Annex A. Terms of Reference

Annex B. Organizations visited and persons met

Annex C. Bibliography

Annex D. Logframe

Annex E. Evaluation Matrix

Annex F. Interview Guidelines etc

Period: 16-25 September 2020

Contact Person:

Proposal/Price Submission: THA_Procurement_BKK@savethechildren.org

Further enquiries: admin.thailand@savethechildren.org

Contact : admin.thailand@savethechildren.org, THA_Procurement_BKK@savethechildren.org


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