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CCF/HHC Moldova is seeking evaluation services for a social field project

Terms of Reference

for the evaluation of the project

Strengthening the capacity of CSOs for inclusive participation in society of the most marginalised parents and children

 

CCF Moldova is seeking a company of a team of individual consultants to conduct the final evaluation of the project.

 

Deadline for sending questions and clarifications – 10th November 2017

Deadline for submitting the proposal and budget in response to the ToR – 20th November 2017

 

 

  1. Background

In recent years Moldova has made efforts to reform its child protection system, supporting vulnerable and marginalised families to stay together and offering family-based care in place of institutional care where children are not able to stay with their parents. However, there is a significant gap between policy and practice as discriminatory attitudes lead to children from vulnerable groups continuing to be placed in institutional care. Children from the most vulnerable families in society are consistently over represented in institutional care in Moldova, including children with disabilities, children of Roma origin, children with HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis, children from single parent families, children of teenage mothers and children of parents who themselves grew up in institutional care. A high proportion of children enter the system at a very young age through one of the four institutions for babies across the country, despite the proven negative effects institutional care has on the development of babies and young children. Childhood trauma caused by abandonment and a lack of attachment to a consistent adult have proven lifelong impacts which are extremely destructive. It is crucial to tackle this issue in early stages of a child’s life to avoid the trauma and its consequences.

Separation from their family could have been prevented for many children by supporting vulnerable and marginalised parents to access services and support which allow them to provide care and protection for their children at home. Where this is not possible, a family environment could be provided through placement in the extended family, a foster family, in a family type home or, where appropriate, through national adoption. Redirecting child protection policy from institutional to quality family and community based care of children, known as deinstitutionalisation, has recently become a priority in the EU. The 2013 EC Recommendation ‘Investing in Children: Breaking the Cycle of Disadvantage’ has explicitly called on Member States to use the Structural Funds to support families and stop the expansion of institutional care in Europe, promoting quality family-based care in its place.

To further promote CCF Moldova and Hope and Homes for Children UK have implemented a EC funded project through European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR) Country-based Support Scheme.

The overall objective is to strengthen the role of CSOs to promote children’s rights and contribute to the reform of the child protection system in Moldova. Specific objectives: (1) Mobilise civil society to create a network of CSOs capable of representing beneficiary interests and influencing policy. (2) Develop a network of advocates from those vulnerable and underrepresented groups to become advocates for children’s rights and the transition from institutional care to family and community care. (3) Support advocacy efforts to improve dialogue between different actors and policy development.

Target group - 25 CSOs, 13 local, national authorities, 200 child protection professionals, 150 parents of children in risk groups

Project beneficiaries - Est. 600 Children and parents from vulnerable groups, Roma, with disabilities, from poor, single parent families.

Expected results - Local CSOs are empowered and work in cooperation with advocates representing the most vulnerable groups to influence the reform of the child protection system in Moldova, including the transition from institutional care to family and community care.

Main activities - (1) Production of an advocacy toolkit to build the capacity of local CSOs; Sub-granting local CSOs to implement activities in each county aimed at raising awareness and support for children’s rights; Joint activities in each county bringing together local CSOs with other stakeholders and policy makers; Training and mentoring to professionals in child protection.

(2) Identification and support to vulnerable families in target counties and municipalities to access necessary social services; Child and family friendly document outlining children’s rights; Child and family friendly document outlining rights of persons with disabilities; Advocate training

(3) Policy-implementation gap analysis; Development of advocacy documents addressing national policy makers based on research and evidence; National conference

The project implementation duration January 2015 – January 2018.

 

  1. Evaluation objectives and users

 

The evaluation will aim:

  • To provide an overall independent assessment of the project implementation
  • To inform the programming and implementation of the EIDHR in Moldova

Evaluation users 

The main users of this evaluation include the European Commission, the EU Delegation in Moldova, project partners and other relevant stakeholders. The evaluation may also be of interest to the wider international development community, experts, donors and international organisations, civil society organisations, and the general public interested in EU assistance in Moldova. 

  1. EVALUATION QUESTIONS

In line with the Better Regulation guidelines on evaluations introduced by the European Commission in 2015, the main assessment criteria are: relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, EU added value, scope for simplification, coherence, complementarity and synergies, consistency, sustainability leverage, and impact.

Scope and focus

The scope and focus of the evaluation takes into consideration the following criteria and evaluation questions:

  1. Assessing relevance / To what extent the implementation of the project is responding to the priorities in overall social and child protection reforms?
  1. Assessing effectiveness / To what extent does the implementation of the project meet the outcomes as defined?
  • Have the planned results been achieved to date (quantitative and qualitative)?
  • To what extent and how did the implementation of project activities

respond to the changing external conditions and unplanned (both positive and negative) effects relevant to the planned results?

  • What strategies have been used to take into account a changing environment?
  • Were these strategies successful?
  1. Assessing sustainability / To what extent are the outcomes achieved, sustainable?
  • What is the level of ownership within the target group (NGOs) and what are the prospects for further development of related interventions after the end of external support?
  • How well are activities related to implementation of the project contributing to institutional capacities of involved actors / stakeholders?
  1. Assessing efficiency / To what extent did the management of the implementation of the project ensure timelines were kept to?
  • How well have the implementation been managed?
  • To what extent are activities implemented as scheduled, how flexible was the management in adapting to changing needs?
  • Did the project management ensure coordination with other similar interventions to encourage synergy and avoid overlaps?
  1. Assessing impact /To what extend and in what way did the project implementation succeed in improving the situation of children and families, especially the poor, vulnerable and marginalised ones?
  • Which vulnerable groups of children have been reached?
  • Have vulnerable children been reached, including girls, children from low-income families, ethnic minorities, children left behind due to migration etc.?
  • What do the children and their families think themselves in terms of improvements of their situation, especially the poor, vulnerable and marginalized?
  • What has been improved and what has not been improved? What are their recommendations for the future in this regard?
  1. Assessing Communication and Visibility of the Project
  • Has the Communication and Visibility Plan of the project been fully implemented?
  • Were all communication activities conducted in line with Communication and Visibility Manual for EU External Actions? (https://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/work/visibility/_en)
  • Was EU visibility ensured throughout the entire project, as per the established Communication and Visibility Plan?

Evaluation process and methods

The evaluation methodology will be further defined by Evaluation Team and may cover desk review, in-depth interviews and focus group discussions with local stakeholders, NGOs, families and children, combined with the field visits to services and to families.

The evaluation team may hold debriefing workshops involving beneficiaries and other external stakeholders, with a view to strengthen the quality of collected data, to help interpret data with the view point of field level stakeholders, and to empower civil society organisations locally. 

Scope and focus

Nation-wide scope with focus on geographical areas where the project was implemented

Confidentiality:

Evaluation should take into consideration the difficulties of collecting confidential data and presenting findings that might prove threatening to particular stakeholder groups.

Evaluators should be sensitive to beliefs and act with integrity and respect to all stakeholders. In the report evaluators should ensure confidentiality of information regarding individual children and families.

Deliverables and tentative timeframe

Key tasks that Evaluation team is responsible for carrying out are:

  • Develop more detailed evaluation methodology and work plan –draft to be submitted to CCF for approval, including key instruments – by 15th December (2 days)
  • De-briefing bi-monthly meetings
  • Conducting desk review of selected documents / reports in close cooperation with CCF staff – by 20th December (3 days);
  • Conducting field-visit and interviewing key stakeholders / beneficiaries in close cooperation with CCF staff – by 20th January (5 days)
  • Analysing all the inputs and writing the draft report (in English) with inputs provided by CCF – by 30th January; (7 days)
  • Based on feed-back provided by CCF and partners prepare the final report (in English) with all key findings, recommendations (including prioritisation of key strategic recommendations) – by 5th February (2 days)
  • Prepare presentation and two pages of key findings in English and Romanian– by 10th February (1 day)

Total – max. 20 days

Evaluation team qualifications

The competencies required from the members of the Evaluation team are the following:

  • Experience of conducting project and programme evaluations;
  • Technical expertise in child protection;
  • Good communication and presentation skills / ability to express concisely and clearly ideas and concepts in written and oral form;
  • Experience in working with NGOs;
  • Understanding of the civil society in Moldova;
  • Knowledge of the civil society in Transnistrian region;
  • Team leadership competencies;
  • Excellent written and spoken Romanian, Russian and English;
  • Ability to keep with strict deadlines

Support provided

  1. Project documents (proposal and logframe)
  2. Project team expertize and time
  3. Indicative list of people to be interviewed, dates of visit, itinerary, name of team members 
  4. NGOs contacts
  5. Beneficiaries’ contacts
  6. 2 Project reports
  7. Baseline and end line assessment of NGOs
  8. Project outputs

Budget

Max. 6600 euro (0% VAT)

 

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