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2003 NEP: A Review of the Use of Child Info



Executive summary

Background:

ChildInfo is a database for monitoring the situation of children and women in the South Asia region, and can be used to organize, analyze and present statistical data based on various indicators. It was designed with the aim of encouraging children, adults, civil society, government organizations, aid agencies and UNICEF to become involved in democratic dialogue that would contribute towards improving the situation for children and women. UNICEF has long-term plans to hand over the administration and management of ChildInfo to the host country; in the case of Nepal, this would be to the CBS, as it falls under the National Planning Commission (NPC).

In Nepal, the UNICEF Country Office has been using ChildInfo to collect data on women and children since the 1990s. UNICEF Nepal started introducing ChildInfo to its host country in 1999 by providing training to government officials from various departments including the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS), and staff members from UNICEF and INGOs. The first training (using Version 2) for 56 participants was conducted by UNICEF Nepal on 27–28 September 1999. A second training (using the upgraded Version 2) for 18 participants was conducted by the CBS, with support from UNICEF Nepal, on 10–11 October 2001.

Purpose/Objective:

The objectives of this study are to provide information on the use of ChildInfo, and make suggestions on how to enhance the software, training methods and other factors to increase its user population. It should be emphasized that this report does not provide a comprehensive survey but is a means to verify feedback that UNICEF Nepal has received from ChildInfo users and potential users. In addition, it must be noted that the report concerns ChildInfo only, and not NepalInfo. This report will be useful for trainers, the technical committee, and software developers.

Methodology:

Of the 56 participants from the two training courses in 1999 and 2002, 29 people agreed to be interviewed (14 from government agencies, six from INGOs, and nine from UNICEF Nepal). Interviews were also conducted with a member of the ChildInfo Technical Committee, who manages the ChildInfo software and trains students; and the Regional Monitoring and Evaluation Officer at UNICEF ROSA.

Reports prepared by UNICEF's Division of Policy and Planning, UNICEF Nepal, the CBS and the ChildInfo Technical Committee on ChildInfo were reviewed. Evaluation forms, collected from participants after training on ChildInfo, along with the manuals of the various versions, were also reviewed. Feedback from training on NepalInfo, provided in July 2002, was not considered.

Findings and Conclusions:

Only four of the 29 people contacted were using ChildInfo. The main reasons for not using the software were that it was not relevant to their daily work and that training was insufficient. Some organizations (Research Centre for Educational Innovation and Development, Department of Water Supply and Sewerage, and UNICEF's Eastern Region Field Office) are using ChildInfo for cross-tabulation, analysis and generating maps. Although only four people had used the software after training, most participants had demonstrated it to their supervisors and colleagues. However, they had not been able to use it as they wished because they did not receive sufficient encouragement from senior managers. Nevertheless, most people interviewed were impressed with the map-generating capability of ChildInfo. Some people noted that only district-level data are available, and that more useful VDC-level data had to be obtained from their own field workers.

Recommendations:

This study concludes that ChildInfo does have the potential to become more popular if: 

  1. up-to-date VDC-level data are made available,
  2. senior managers are made more aware of its capabilities and potential,
  3. training targets those who use statistical data in their daily work, software enhancement includes the capacity to link or integrate ChildInfo with other software packages, and
  4. ChildInfo is launched formally by the National Planning Commission and aggressive promotion is undertaken.


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Report information

Date:
2003

Region:
ROSA

Country:
Nepal

Type:
Evaluation

Theme:
Health - Multithematic

Partners:

PIDB:

Follow-up:

Language:
English

Sequence Number:
2003/001

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