MRE@A ZA AFIRMACIJU NEVLADINOG SEKTORA
                                              NETWORK FOR AFFIRMATION OF NON-GOVERNMENTAL SECTOR

                                                          Tel/ Fax: (+381 81) 611 644; 611 941 Mob: (+381 69) 44 60 94; E-mail: mans@cg.yu
                                                                                    Prve Proleterske 10/I, 81000 Podgorica, Montenegro, FRY

                  IN 5 REGIONS IN MONTENEGRO - MAY 2000

The aim of these pages is to give an overview of the finding of the need assessment carried
out by The Network, to point at some of the issues raised during the assessments and to serve
as inspiration (background paper) for the suggested strategic planning workshop in future. To
a certain extent the structure of the paper follows the logical project approach applied during
the need assessments (please refer to annex 1 for a short description of the methodology).

I. Problem Identification

The table below illustrates the number of times a certain (group) of problems were mentioned
during the problem identification exercise (please, refer to the workshop reports for more
details). However, please note that the table does not encounter all the problems mentioned
and discussed during the whole workshop, but only those written down on a small piece of
paper during the problem identification exercise. The table does not, for instance, reflect that
lack of information and co-operation with International NGOs (INGOs) were often mentioned
during the discussions.

 No               ISSUE                          NIKSIC           KOTOR            ULCINJ            BIJELO            PODGO            TOTAL
                                                                                                     POLJE              RICA
  1    Insufficient funds
       - lack of access to funds                      3                6                6                 4                 9               28
       - lack of understanding by
  2    Weak co-operation,
       networking and sharing of                      3                1                6                 7                 3               26
       information amongst NGOs,
       including competition
  3    Insufficient facilities                        7                3                4                 7                 4               25
       - space and equipment
  4    Understanding of NGOs by
       society is low                                 1                4                -                 7                 4               16
       -taboo and prejudice
       -no education about NGOs
  5    Women‟s position                               2                2                7                 2                 -               13
       - prejudice & taboos
  6    Misuse and ignorance of
       NGO sector by GO                               -                -                4                 3                 2                9
       - e.g. use NGOs as an
       image of democracy; no
       support, steal ideas
  7    Insufficient access to and
       understanding by the                           3                -                1                 2                 2                8
  8    Education of NGOs is                           -                2                -                 3                 2                7
  9    Internal capacity is weak
       - project proposal writing                     -                3                -                 -                 2                5
 10    Lack of co-operation
       amongst NGOs & INGOs                           -                -                1                 -                 1                2
       - sharing of information
       - networking
 11    Lack of directory                              -                -                -                 1                 1                2

The total number of NGOs participating in the workshops was 49. However specifically in Ulcinj and
Podgorica a number of the NGOs only participated partially. One of the reasons (raised by a participant in
Ulcinj) was the timing of the workshop. It was suggested undertaking workshops on Saturdays/Sundays
due to the fact that NGO people work during weekdays.


     o   The overall impression from the need assessments is that the major parts of the NGOs
         address external problems during the process of identification of problems rather than
         internal organizational problems. A few exceptions were found in Podgorica and Kotor
         (please refer to no 8 above). The reasons may be lack of awareness about
         organizational processes and internal problems as well as a general tendency to blame
         external factors.

     o   Apart from insufficient finance, equipment and space NETWORKING (lack of co-
         operation and lack of sharing of information) is the problem that has been mentioned
         most extensively.

     o   Ethnical problems (e.g. insufficient multi ethnical co-operation amongst NGOs in the
         Mediterranean) were addressed in Ulcinj. In Bjelo Polje, as a region on three boarders
         during turbulent war times the last seven years, ethnical problems have also increased.

     o   Women‟s issues (e.g. position of women) and patriarchy were addressed in Ulcinj and
         Bjelo Polje. In Podgorica violence against women and children were also discussed as
         an increasingly visible urban problem.

     o   The need assessment, carried out by this method, does not illustrate or evaluate the
         amount and the quality of activities implemented by the NGOs.

II. Problem Tree and Objective Tree

NO       REGION              CORE PROBLEM                           CORE OBJECTIVE
 1       NIKSIC              Inefficient NGO Education              Efficient NGO Education
                             Inefficient mobilization               Efficient mobilization
 2       KOTOR               Weak Mobilization                      Strong Mobilization
                             Insufficient Finance                   Sufficient Finance
 3       ULCINJ              Unclear Perception of NGO              Clear Perception of NGO
 4       BJELO POLJE         No NGO Networking                      NGO Networking
 5       PODGORICA           Insufficient Information               Sufficient Information
                             Lack of Education                      (not discussed)


     o   The facilitators suggested not choosing finance as the core problem even though most
         of the NGOs wanted to discuss this problem. The reasons are that the logical solution to
         „lack of finance‟ is to „get finance‟. Therefore the finance problem does not really
         stimulate a broader discussion of NGO problems and issues. Moreover, the finance
         problem is usually a part of another problem and can as such be addressed during the
         discussions of these problems.

     o   A few problems, which were not identified during the „identification of problems‟,
         appeared currently during the creation of the problem tree. These were fear of changes,
         politicization, centralization, a tradition for top-down approaches not stimulating self
         initiatives and grass root work, immature (NGO) law procedures and priority to power
         and not to the (good) cause. In Podgorica it was mentioned that the GO creates NGOs
         in order to legitimate the government (e.g. creating a good image of democracy).

   o   Through the development of the problem trees we tried to address internal problems in
       the organizations (e.g. capacity, decision making etc) but we experienced a certain
       resistance to discuss these issues. However,

            - In Niksic the discussion revealed that one of the effects of „Inefficient NGO
            Education‟ were poor management, individual decision making, poor project
            planning, low quality of work and slow capacity building.

            - In Kotor the discussion revealed that one of the effects of weak mobilization were
            inefficiency, dominance, ineffective organizations and exhaustion of a few people.

            - In Ulcinj the discussion revealed that one of the effects of „Unclear perception of
            NGOs‟ was that the personalities of the people involved in the work were the
            strongest asset compared to the cause of the organization.

            - In Podgorica the discussion revealed that one of the effects of „Insufficient
            Information‟ was lack of capacity building within the NGOs.

III. Action Plans

The objective of this exercise were to
   1. Introduce a way to make concrete action plans with specific focus on measurable

   2. Get acquainted with the activities of the NGOs and their experience within different
      areas as well as concrete ideas on how to achieve some of the objectives

   3. Get an impression of the problems and the assets of the organizations including the
      skills they can offer to The Network as well as what kind of assistance the NGOs would
      like to have from The Network.

Ad 1: It is evident that most of the NGOs find it very difficult to develop measurable results
(and concrete objectives) for a project. The majority express themselves at a very general
level in terms of the results they want to achieve. As mentioned in the workshop reports there
seems to be a tendency to enjoy discussing results at a more general level. However,
committing oneself to measurable results is a short cut to realistic project planning and a great
opportunity to keep the immediate objectives of the projects in mind. Also, „measurable
results‟ together with the identification of „responsible person‟ and „deadline‟ can also be a
simple but very useful monitoring tool.

On each workshop 2-5 action plans were discussed in plenary. The comments given to the
action plans by the facilitators are however not reflected in the action plans enclosed in the
respective reports.

The action plans generally lack indication of the target group either as a part of the objective
or described in an independent column. According to this experience the target group should
be added to future action plans.

Ad 2: The action plans suggest a variety of activities. As illustrated in annex 2 some are more
concrete than others. Some address topics that are of general interest (e.g. no 29 and 31) and
some address more specialized topics such as children with difficulties in growing (no. 11).
One way The Network can use the action plans is by identifying like minded organizations and
arrange for instance round table discussions on certain issues where the organizations get the
opportunity to exchange ideas and identify actions to be taken by the organizations in future.

Ad 3: Generally speaking the action plans reveals a great need for strengthening the project
planning skills of NGOs. The Network has already taken the initiative to arrange a Log frame
Training in cooperation with FRESTA.
Based on the action plans the NGOs request assistance in:
    o Fund raising
    o Information about donors
    o Creating linkages with the media
    o Provide information about like-minded NGOs and INGOs
    o Establish connection with like-minded NGOs and INGOs
    o Provide literature on certain topics
    o Educate the public and GO
    o Provide technical support within specific topics
    o Support in finding machinery and materials
    o Identify educators and animators
    o Make seminar in capacity building
    o Provide training in project planning
    o Make new friendships
    o Make the surroundings support

IV. Strategic priorities of work for The Network

It is for the board to decide which strategic issues The Network should work on in future. The
discussion may, as a point of departure, involve to what extent The Network will address
external and internal problems of the NGOs in its future work. Hereafter the need assessment
should be used to stimulate the development of a strategy for The Network for the next year.

It is strongly suggested that The Network undertake a two days strategic workshop attended
by the board and the staff members as suggested in the enclosure.

V. Strengths and weaknesses of the methodology experienced by the
Please refer to annex 1 for a short description of the methodology.

   1. Gather people
   2. Defining problems
   3. Create awareness about the advantages of communication and dialogue e.g. problem
      solving in groups, different opinions and impressions
   4. Practical and action oriented
   5. Making personal contacts
   6. Documentation
   7. Useful for public meetings/workshop on NGO issues

  1. Not enough time for thorough discussion of problems
  2. Not enough time for introduction
  3. Action Plans should have been explained by discussing one project example in details in
  4. Not enough focus on target groups
  5. One day is too short
  6. Timing – Saturday/Sunday?
  7. Lot of problems but you may only choose one
  8. No former experience of using the methodology
  9. Translation took too much time
  10. Media were not present during the workshop

                                                                                          ANNEX 1

                       Logical Problem Identification Method for
                                  Need assessments 1

The method we are going to apply in today‟s workshop is called the Logical Project Approach.
The purposes are:
   1) To identify the problems and challenges you may encounter as an NGO.
   2) Practice how to plan actions to counteract the problems
   3) Consider your own assets to implement the plan as well as the support you may find
      useful to get from an organization such as Network.

Step 1:
Create groups (dependent on the number of the participants) and in 10 - 15 minutes write
down on index cards the problems you feel is present right now in your organization. Write
only one problem per card.

Step 2:
Place the index cards on a big paper sheet on the wall. Ask the participants to come up and
group the problems on a different paper sheet. Clarify in plenary if clarifications are needed.
Select one core problem. Try to describe the problem positively. Do for instance not state:
“lack of water” but e.g. “unsafe water”.

Step 3:
Make a problem tree where you identify root causes and effects of the core problems. Focus on
the interrelation among the causes and the effects. Here it is very important to be a team in
order to see as many linkages as possible.

Step 4:
Turn the problem tree into an objective tree.

Step 5:
Action plans. Identify activities that are needed to implement to achieve the objectives. For
this exercise people from the same organization may/may not form groups and an action plan
format as suggested below should be used. Consider and discuss the assets of your
organization to actually implement the action plan. Consider how you can involve others in the
implementation of your action plan e.g. similar NGOs, Government institutions and the

         (OBJECTIVE)                  RESULTS          LINE    CHARGE

NB: With respect to “in charge” consider the role of your NGO and the role of the Network.

You may put the action plan up in your organization.

Utensils needed for the process:
   1) Index cards, 2) Big sheets of paper, 3) Markers, 4) Tape.

 Please, refer to “Logical Framework Workshop for staff at the Country Office of MS Nepal,
1995 for elaboration.

                                                                                                                                                     ANNEX 2


Below we have summarized information about activities and service needed from the Network (stated under Remarks in the actual action
plans). Please refer to the workshop reports for further details for instance on the support the organizations can offer to the network. It must
be emphasized that the table only reflects what was written in the action plans. A number of comments and issues were raised during the
presentation and discussion of the action plans but apparently these were not added to the action plan formats.

  NO    REGION                              ACTIVITIES                                                    ROLE OF THE NETWORK
                                                                                                            (Service provision)
   1    NIKSIC      Collaboration with NGOs abroad on prosperity of theatre          -
   2       -        Theatre, music painting, internet                                Funds
   3       -        Educative
   4                Education of women groups to appear in public, how to lobby,     Financial, education, exchange of experiences, literature
                    sensitization, materials addressing women issues
   5        -       Rehabilitation of children with learning and growing             Information about donors, getting entrance to the third sector,
                    disabilities                                                     literature
   6    KOTOR       Creating a good image of NGO sector                              Create linkages between organizations and media, marketing
   7      -         Create a good NGO                                                Create linkages to other NGOs who need assistance in creating good
                                                                                     NGOs (= Anima playing the role of mediator)
  8         -       Create some interests                                            Identifying educators and animators
  9         -       Create a NGO web site                                            General support
  10        -       Educative seminars to create confidence in new things            Support and promote the actions of Anima, create links between
                                                                                     donors and org., identifying different collaborators/facilitators
  11        -       Education – lectures, round tables, radio, television, to        Information about donors
                    change some problems (children with difficulties in growing)
  12        -       Discussion and lectures on transcendental meditation             None
  13        -       Exchanging ideas and create understanding of NGO work with       Educate the public and GO, financial assistance during the foundation
                    GO                                                               of NGO
  14        -       Loud thinking, protest, public actions etc.                      To push the project abroad + identify donors
  15        -       Information about the influence of Boka on foundation of civil   None
                    society and Montenegro progress
  16    ULCINJ      Solve ecological problems, producing healthy food, educate       Financial, technical and logistic support
                    civilians and youth, increase ecological awareness
  17        -       Networking with similar organizations (detectives)               Getting connected with similar organization
  18        -       Registration of multiethnic societies and conducting             Information about NGOs, arranging meetings with similar NGOs,
                    multiethnic and multicultural projects                           finding funds for this kind of projects

19       -       Promoting the importance of NGOs in the development of civil      Assist with instructions, advices, support, inviting for seminars,
                 society through workshop attended by NGO, GO and media            trainings, courses
20       -       Assist women and girls from villages to become economical         Support in finding machinery and materials
                 independent and avoid and education about health (sexual
21   Bijelo P.   Realization of total co-operation with local authorities          Help in finding the equipment and finance
22       -       Educate young persons about the consequences of addiction         Through Network we will make new friendships and we can exchange
                 (drugs, alcohol, smoking) through meetings with the pupils in     literature and experiences
                 the schools. Involving professional lecturers, parents and
23       -       Ecology, the protection of Human rights, struggle                 Finance support for technical realization
                 against drug addiction etc through radio programs
24       -       The education for the work on computers and on Internet           Make the surroundings support, collaboration with similar organization,
                 including computer summer camp                                    help in getting equipment, finance
25       -       Mobilize people in ecological matters                             The collaboration and financial and informative support
26       -       Organize public discussions about privatization, youth            ?
                 problems, human rights (for prisoners and refugees in
27       -       Mobilization of children                                          Financial support and the support of the Children Unit
28       -       Educative seminars on for instance the relationship between       Good collaboration with all NGOs, exchanging of ideas and
                 mother-daughter, mixed marriages, stress, addiction,              information, literature
                 pregnancy, and climacteric.
29   PODGO.      Educative seminars about the work of the NGOs, how to deal        Provide information about existing seminars, identify participants,
                 with media, how to make team work within and amongst              assist in producing the manual, suggesting facilitators
                 NGOs and fundraising
30       -       Capacity training program for program coordinators, training      Choose and make seminar for PC in capacity building within NGOs
                 coordinator, PR coordinator and field coordinator, 6 assistants
31       -       Education through lectures and seminars in Podgorica at the       Consulting/servicing, getting information about INGOs, project
                 library every month with focus on how to make an NGO, how         activities etc.
                 to improve the communication amongst NGOs and INGOs and
                 how to make projects


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