• Consultancy Job at Build Africa

  • Posted on: 28 January, 2017 Deadline: 9 January, 2017
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  • Build Africa is an international NGO with offices in the UK and supporting organisations in Kenya and Uganda. It aims to improve the quality of education and support livelihoods by developing the capacity of communities. Build Africa works with communities stretching across several regions in Kenya enabling school communities to improve the quality of education they provide for their children.

     

    Consultancy

     

    Job Details

    1. Project Description

    The Farmer’s Network Project has been implemented by Build Africa Kenya between December 2014 and December 2016 across the Elburgon and Gilgil areas of Nakuru County, Kenya.

    The general approach to the project was threefold:

    a) Activities to engage farmers with VSLA methodology to improve access to finance and subsequent investments in farming business

    b) Activities to train and share knowledge and skills with farmers to develop their farming practice

    c) Activities to support networks of farmers that encourages the sharing of information and best practice, and also improves their position in the market chain

    2.1. Intended project goal

    Project Goal: 4000 small scale farmers in Nakuru County, Kenya are able and empowered to make informed choices to improve their farming practices and increase their income.

    2.2. Intended objectives and outcomes

    The Farmer’s Network Project (FNP) was designed to deliver on three key outcomes:

    1) 4000 farmers in Nakuru County have equitable access to financial services enabling them to invest in appropriate inputs to develop their farms

    2) 4000 farmers in Nakuru County demonstrate relevant skills and knowledge in modern farming practices enabling them to develop their farms

    3) 4000 farmers in Nakuru County participate in farmers’ groups allowing them to share information and best practice, and increase their influence and negotiation ability

    1. Evaluation purpose, use and evaluation questions

    The purpose of the evaluation is to develop evidence-based findings on the extent to which the Farmer’s Network Project met the intended outcomes, supporting small scale farmers to access financial services, demonstrate skills and knowledge and participate in farmer’s networks to improve their ability to farm and increase their income. The evaluation is also tasked with generating learning to inform the future design and implementation of livelihoods projects at Build Africa.

    Due to historical challenges in monitoring and evaluation of the project, the study will also seek to reconstruct a baseline benchmark so as to be able to explore the extent of change experienced since the inception of the project.

    The end of project evaluation has two main objectives: to investigate the key evaluation questions and to generate learning to provide recommendations that can inform future project design and implementation.

    The key evaluation questions are:

    a) To what extent have the FNP outcomes been achieved?

    b) To what extent has FNP made significant contributions to any change in the participant’s lives?

    c) To what extent has FNP contributed towards the education of the participants’ children?

    The findings, learning and recommendations from the evaluation will be used to report on the effect of the project to multiple Build Africa donor stakeholders, and will also be used to inform and support future project design and implementation of interventions.

    1. Build Africa Evaluation Quality Standards

    Build Africa works towards meeting evaluation quality standards in line with the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) criteria for evaluating development assistance, combined with the BOND Evidence Principles. The standards provide guidance to the standards that Build Africa and partners should seek to meet in conducting evaluations, including data collection.

    The BOND Evidence Principles specifically focus on the quality of evidence within an evaluation. The standards are as follows:

    • Voice and Inclusion: We present beneficiaries’ views on the effects of the intervention, and identify who has been affected and how
    • Appropriateness: We use methods that are justifiable given the nature of the intervention and the purpose of the assessment
    • Triangulation: We make conclusions about the intervention’s effects by using a mix of methods, data sources, and perspectives
    • Contribution: We can show how change happened and explain how we contributed to it
    • Transparency: We are open about the data sources and methods used, the results achieved, and the strengths and limitations of the evidence

    Build Africa must aim to achieve the content and quality of evidence as outlined above.

    1. Evaluation approach and methodology

    The evaluation has adopted a design that seeks to assess the effectiveness of the project in reaching the outcomes and a form of contribution analysis approach to explore the influence of the project on the outcomes.

    The evaluation will employ a mixed-methods approach that consists of a desk based document review of project literature and records, capturing quantitative data through a questionnaire and qualitative data through the capture of most significant change stories and Rapid Rural Appraisal style Focus Group Discussions. This approach will contribute towards a triangulated wealth of comprehensive data that refers directly to the results based management requirements of the log frame and also encourages significant participant participation in evaluating the project. This participatory component of the approach will support the evaluation to develop findings that are evidence-based in the experiences, perceptions and lives of participants.

    Study Methodology:

    Desk Review & consultation within Build Africa

    • Review of project documents including literature relating to project design and implementation including theory of change, log frame etc.
    • Review of project records and monitoring data
    • Discussion within Build Africa around the evaluation design

    Development of data tools

    • Based on the evaluation design (approach, methodology and key evaluation questions), the necessary data collection tools should be developed. These will include:

    o Tool 1: Semi-structured questionnaire for farmers

    o Tool 2: Most Significant Change guide for farmers

    o Tool 3: Rapid Rural Appraisal/Focus Group Discussion for farmers

    Support to research/data collection team

    • Build Africa will provide guidance to the independent research team on the evaluation purpose, design and plan
    • Build Africa will be responsible for introducing the tools and the independent research team who are then tasked with piloting the tools in an internal training. Field data collection
    • Collect the data required to answer the key evaluation questions. The data collection will include:

    o Semi-structured questionnaire: The research team will conduct 336 semi-structured questionnaires with farmers who are members of a Farmers’ Network through the project. The tool will include questions relating directly to the log frame outcomes and indicators, as well as using the recall approach to gather data to reconstruct a baseline.

    o Most significant change tool: The research team will conduct 35 most significant change sessions with individual respondents.

    o Rapid Rural Appraisal/Focus Group Discussion: The research team will conduct 7 RRA/FGDs each with 6 participants totalling a sum of 42 individual respondents. These discussions will include discussion and interactive, participatory methods of collecting data.

    Data analysis & final report

    • Data entry, cleansing and validation conducted by the research team/Build Africa Kenya team, and shared with Build Africa Kenya.
    • Data analysis conducted by Build Africa UK. The analysis of the questionnaire data will be quite straight forward as many of the questions are closed/multiple choice, allowing for quick analysis. The qualitative data will be analysed using a content analysis technique to identify findings from the Most Significant Change stories and the RRA/FGDs.
    • Report write up
    • Tasks and deliverables

    The required consultancy deliverables are:

    • Hard copies of the completed data collection tools – to include completed questionnaires and extensive notes on the qualitative components
    • A full and final typed data set in English for both the quantitative and qualitative data collection
    • Final detailed evaluation report
    • A summarised power point presentation for sharing with partners and other stakeholders

    The consultant will also be responsible for:

    • Attending an inception meeting (remotely if required) with Build Africa Kenya staff to be introduced to the project evaluation, and requirements of the data collection exercise
    • Confirm a team of data collectors capable of achieving the high quality standards required by the assignment
    • Reviewing the data collection tools with key Build Africa Kenya personnel to ensure a thorough understanding of the purpose and content of each tool. Explore the potential for mobile data collection methods and liaise with Build Africa on the feasibility of this for this exercise.
    • A half or full day of piloting/testing the tools, and practice administering the tools within the data collection team
    • Supervising and leading the data collection team to collect high quality data – this will amount to the completion of at least 336 questionnaires, 35 most significant change stories and 42 focus group discussions (in line with the sample).
    • Supervise the data entry into the formats provided to an accurate and high standard – data entry must be conducted by a data entrant that has not participated in the data collection
    • Providing the typed raw data to Build Africa Kenya contact staff (as above)

    Build Africa will be responsible for:

    • Preparing relevant documentation and making it available to the consultant
    • Holding an inception meeting (remotely if required) with the consultant to provide background information and to finalise timelines and expectations
    • Providing the data collection tools, and data entry format/database with guidance for how to use if necessary
    • Respond to any queries or concerns regarding the data collection tools and/or exercise
    • BAK to arrange the practice of administering the tools, the logistics for field travel, and to supervise data collection
    • BAK to mobilise relevant project communities in advance and to coordinate the field work to ensure that data collection team are able to capture high quality data from relevant sample of informants
    • Reviewing the final dataset and enquiring further where necessary
    • Making payments for the exercise as agreed in the contract
    • Budget and timeline

    Please submit a full budget for the Terms of Reference including costs associated with and including:

    • Data Collection (a team of at least 7 collectors, for duration of exercise including 1 day pre-practice)
    • Data Entry (a separate individual not part of the data collection team)
    • All costs are inclusive of relevant taxes.

    In line with the evaluation sampling methodology, it is anticipated that the data will be collected:

    • 1 day data collection tools pilot and practice
    • 7 days active data collection in the field
    • 2 day data entry.
    • ---Development of an evaluation report

    The data collection team should include a team lead – responsible for managing the exercise, data collection and entry. Similarly, in line with the sampling requirements it is advised that the data collection team should consist of 7 competent candidates capable of administering both quantitative and qualitative data. The lead consultant will take charge of submission of final report and summarised highlights in PowerPoint presentation

    1. Skills and qualifications of consultancy team

    The data collection support team should consist of candidates who meet the following criteria:

    • Demonstrable experience of leading high quality data collection exercises (essential);
    • Significant skills and experience in quantitative data collection and analysis (essential);
    • Experience of collecting, analysing and synthesising qualitative data using a rigorous approach (essential);
    • Excellent communication and facilitation skills (essential);
    • Experience of overseeing and training data collectors, including providing a quality assurance function (essential);
    • Able to reliably access the Internet, as well as relevant national policy/planning documents and surveys (essential);
    • Experience of working in Kenya or East Africa (essential);
    • Fluent in local language in both writing and speaking (essential)
    • Fluent English in both writing and speaking (essential);
    • Willingness to familiarise self with, and sign up to abiding by, Build Africa’s Child Protection Policy (essential).
    • Experience of (access to) mobile data collection methods (desirable)
    • Evident report writing skills
    • Child Safeguarding

    It is essential that the successful applicant familiarise self with, and sign up to abiding by, Build Africa’s Child Safeguarding Policy.

    We reserve the right to conduct background checks for all shortlisted applicants in line with our child safeguarding policy. This may include collecting references from past employers or commissioning organisations.

    Method of Application

    1. Interested consultant must submit the following documents:
    2. Cover Letter
    3. CV including reference details of previous clients
    4. Sample of previous work in similar consultancy work (training)

    All documents must be submitted on or before Thursday February 9th, 2017 via email to hr@build-africakenya.org and copied to Rsungu@build-africakenya.org

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