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Evaluation report

2017 Guinea Bissau: Summative Evaluation of the UNICEF-EU Project on protecting Women and girls’ rights in Guinea Bissau



Author: Juan Seclen

Executive summary

With the aim to continuously improve transparency and use of evaluation, UNICEF Evaluation Office manages the "Global Evaluation Reports Oversight System (GEROS)". Within this system, an external independent company reviews and rates all evaluation reports. The quality rating scale for evaluation reports is as follows: “Highly Satisfactory”, “Satisfactory”, “Fair” or “Unsatisfactory”. You will find the link to the quality rating below, labelled as ‘Part 2’ of the report, and the executive feedback summary labelled as ‘Part 3’.

Background:

UNICEF has the mandate to promote the human rights of women and children in the world. In this light, it leads and provides support on several initiatives aimed at strengthening social policies and strategies towards the promotion of women and children’s rights worldwide. In Guinea Bissau, UNICEF supported the government with the implementation of the social project named “Toward a protecting environment of women and girls’ rights in the regions of Bafata, Gabu Oio and Bolama/ Bijagos in Guinea Bissau ”. This project was funded by European Union (EU) and was implemented by UNICEF and two local partners – Associação Amiga das Criancas (AMIC) and the Observatorio dos Direitos Humanos Democracia e Cidadania (ODHDC). This intervention operated from January 2012 to January 2016 and aimed to increase respect for and protection of human and legal rights of women, young girls and children in four prioritized regions of the country.
The project main activities aimed at achieving the following outputs:
• a Knowledge Attitudes and Practice survey on women and girls’ rights and harmful practices;
• the implementation of an Integrated Communication Plan, advocacy and technical support to strengthen the legal and institutional frameworks, and;
• the setup of 4 Regional Intervention Units (URIs) to provide assistance, support and referral services for victims of violence and coordinate an early warning mechanism.
Ultimately, the project also aimed at:
• supporting the functioning of 40 Management Committees for Community Action (Comités de Gestão para a Ação Comunitária - CGAC) for promoting women and children’s rights (WCR) within communities;
• supporting the functionality of the Shelter for Women and Girls Victims of Violence (Centro de Acolhimento para Mulheres Vitimas de Violência- CAMVV) along with the provision of a continuous technical support to implementing partners (IP) and;
• overseeing activities implementation in the field.

Purpose/Objective:

This is a summative evaluation of the project whose main objectives are to assess the project’s relevance, effectiveness, efficiency and sustainability and to identify best practices and/or lessons learnt for potential scaling-up. The findings of this evaluation will aim at informing key actors such as government authorities, local partners, donor agency and UNICEF in order to influence decision-making efforts in favor of the protection and promotion of women rights in Guinea-Bissau.

Methodology:

This evaluation is programme-oriented and uses mixed methods to provide answers to the evaluation questions based on the criteria previously mentioned. Relevant data was obtained through document reviews and field visits, in-depth interviews and focal groups with beneficiaries, implementers, and stakeholders. The data was adequately analyzed, interpreted and incorporated in this report. All regions of intervention were visited at data collection stage and one community per region was selected for conducting focus groups discussions (FGD).

Findings and Conclusions:

The beneficiaries (women) of this project mentioned that it helped them to be more respected within their families. They also felt that they are considered as individuals with rights to be well treated, allowed to express their opinion, and with enough capacity to help building the family welfare. The interviewees also highlighted the protecting role of CGAC. The project was well integrated in the social agenda and responded to local needs of women. Beneficiaries also recognized the project contribution to raise awareness and promote positive changes within families. Both Regional Intervention Units (Unidade Regional de Intervenção - URIs) and community sensitization campaigns were well received and recognized as great contributions to women and girls’ rights promotion and respect along with the Management Committees.

The planning and allocation of financial resources was efficient, according to the technical work plans.

All the implemented activities appeared to be well accepted and useful and would need to be maintained and expanded according to the interviewees.

Based on the findings described, the project has accomplished its programmatic targets in all regions. In terms of programmatic achievements, the project was able to:
• Establish, implement and make functional 4 URIs;
• Set up and train a total of 40 CGACs;
• Train 200 community members. All of them were members of the CGAC;
• Deliver the planned activities to 40 Communities in all the four regions;
• Set up one functional CAMVV in Gabu, managed by AMIC.

Recommendations:

1. The social recognition gained by the project calls for the implementation of a new phase to consolidate achievements and strengthen institutional capacity for sustainability.
2. Develop a strategy to strengthen leadership, management and technical capacity of public social sector.
3. Develop a fundraising campaign targeting strategic stakeholders and potential donors to mobilize financial resources for the continuation and expansion of the activities.
4. Set up of a high-level multi-sectoral social platform to work on social policy and protection of women and legal rights.
5. Adopt and manage a comprehensive social development approach (e.g., microcredits, income-producing activities for women, educational activities, etc.) to tackle other basic social needs and simultaneously promote a better position of women within families. 
6. Further social interventions would highly benefit from a solid M&E framework and the design and implementation of a monitoring system to capture high-quality and real-time data and track project performance.  
7. Incorporate in the upcoming MICS survey (2018) some indicators about perception and practices on women and girls’ rights and assess the prevalence of harmful traditional practices. If at all possible, comparing a sample of communities that were targeted by WCRs interventions with others in a similar context that did not get any interventions (e.g., via a quasi-experimental design) would be an excellent method of measuring this intervention’s effectiveness.
8. CGACs and URIs should have more technical and financial support to maintain their operations.
9. Create conditions for strengthening and consolidating the regional public system of care and support for women affected by domestic violence.
10. UNICEF  should continue to provide technical support in order to build capacities of government authorities in terms of leadership, social policy design and project management.

Lessons Learned:

1.CGAC is a key entity that promotes change in favor of women and children’s rights (WCR)
2. Sensitization campaigns tailored to local cultural, traditions, and beliefs were effective to raise awareness
3. Active participation of community leaders is a powerful factor of success to mobilize communities
4. Promoting behavior changes in communities is most likely to be achieved as local residents become implementers
5. URIs have facilitated the emergence of a public system for care, protection and support of women victims of violence
6. The existence of a legal framework protecting women and children’s rights (WCRs) is crucial to induce favorable behavior changes
7. Building the technical capacity of national and regional stakeholders was relevant to motivate, sensitize, and generate social efforts toward protecting Women and Children’s Rights



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Report information

 Year:
2017

Country:
Guinea Bissau

Region:
WCAR

Type:
Evaluation

Theme:
Participation

Partners:
European Union

Language:
English

Sequence:
2017/002

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