Monitoring for Program Effectiveness: the ALPS model and ActionAid’s Global Monitoring Framework Peter O’Driscoll Executive Director ActionAid USA InterAction Forum April 18, 2007 ActionAid is an international anti-poverty agency working in over 40 countries, taking sides with poor people to end poverty and injustice together. Enjoying rights – ActionAid works hand in hand with poor people to improve their lives and achieve their right to a life of dignity. Challenging power –ActionAid helps poor people to challenge and influence governments and companies, and to tackle discrimination in their own communities, to enable them to realize their potential. Women’s equality – ActionAid stands alongside poor women and girls in their fight against the injustices of poverty. We believe equality for women and girls offers the most effective way of ending poverty. Creating change –locally and globally in villages, cities and the corridors of power, ActionAid works to deliver significant change to end poverty together. Working in partnership –ActionAid works closely with partners and social movements to achieve lasting change to end poverty. We are stronger together. Open and accountable – We put ourselves under the same scrutiny as we place others. That way we learn and improve so that we are better equipped to end poverty. What is ALPS? • Accountability, Learning and Planning System • An accountability framework that … • Sets out key accountability requirements, guidelines and processes in ActionAid • Sets out standards not only about WHAT we do but HOW we do it • Requires processes and ways of working for operationalizing the strategic plan Rights to End Poverty • Refers not only to organizational processes (planning, strategy formulation, reviews and audits) but also to personal attitudes and behaviors. ALPS to enhance Organisational Objectives • Strengthen ActionAid governance and deepen accountability • Strengthen staff capacity • Strengthen our structures and systems • Strengthen our communication and campaign • Broaden our supporter base and mobilize supporters and partners to advocate for our mission • Increase and diversify income Attitudes and behaviours: ALPS can only be effective if AAI staff, volunteers, activists, trustees and partners hold attitudes and behave in ways that fit our shared vision, mission and values: • Share power with others • Support the excluded to fully participate • Address all types of discrimination in all of our work • Learn from others • Learn from colleagues and partners and share knowledge • Willingness to listen • Striving to achieve effective communications ALPS Processes Country Participatory Annual Plan Annual External Peer Strategy Review and and Budget Report Review Review Paper Reflection with 2 year Process financial projection 3 months In the last after At least End of year of the External once At least September - March Strategy Review every 5 once a year November period completed years Appraisal: Exercise to understand and explore the contexts, feasibility, propositions and value of any new project, programme or initiative before they are started. Needed for starting any new program within countries and new regional and international campaigns. Prepared before any strategy is designed or developed. Presents recommendations about potential programs, strategies, partners and key areas of interventions Country Strategy: Sets up clear objectives and strategies for delivering the goals and themes of ActionAid’s international strategy Country Director leads process in consultation with the National Board Dedicated team of the staff (minimum of 50% women members) develops the strategy. Consultation with staff, communities and partners Regional Director, regional team and international theme heads must be involved to ensure coordination with strategic direction at international level Participatory Review and Reflection Process: Creative, light, collective review process bringing together all stakeholders, with emphasis on poor and excluded, to improve the responsiveness of our work Works with stakeholders groups to assess what has been done, what has been learnt and within this analysis what will be done differently in the future Findings and lessons feed into the annual planning process and recommendations are reflected in annual plan activities Required for the whole of ActionAid International -- functions, themes, campaigns, regions, country programs and affiliates, and special projects. Annual Plan and Budget: Describes activities and allocates resources (money and people) to achieve objectives of strategies and strategic plans Tool for management and a key accountability mechanism with stakeholders Required every year from ALL levels of ActionAid Should address lessons from the review and reflection process and other reviews and studies. Country plans must refer to international themes and vice versa Annual Report: Shares and reports progress, expenditure, outcomes, lessons and challenges against the relevant strategy, strategic plan or appraisal document and reflect how lessons will translate into subsequent changed actions and plans Required from all units of ActionAid Includes finances; max 15 pages; due March for countries; April for regions, themes and functions. Global progress report to be published in May Needs to include Stories capturing what has been achieved as result of shift in power relationships Internal Audit: Ensure the economical, effective and efficient utilization of funds and the management of the organisation’s approach to risk management Identification of major risk areas, review risk management Covers asset control, payments, management accounts, reporting to institutional donors/sponsors, cost classification, performance measures (including partners), donor relationship management, compliance with local laws Information on how ALPS core requirements, processes and standards have been implemented Information on application of accountability measures, budget transparency processes, implementation of open information policy, etc. Peer Review: Required for country programmes as complement to external review, within a 3 month period after end of external review (observations, comments and recommendations) to validate findings and explore gaps Provide constructive critical feedback and promote cross organisation understanding learning and alignment Involves 3-5 ActionAiders including a trustee, Country Director or senior programme staff, thematic lead and Women’s Rights specialist Peer review report circulated to key stakeholders before submission, including regional and national staff and board, and approved by Chief Executive and International Directors Global Monitoring Framework: A framework/ a guideline for gathering, consolidating and analyzing data, information and stories about the nature, extent and results of our work. Seeks to help teams to describe/register the major changes and transformations (impact) sought in Rights to End Poverty as a result of our work. Based on guiding questions and NOT indicators. Guiding questions will help us unpack these changes and understand the impact we are having. 1- Monitoring Strategic Objectives: Who? Poor and excluded people, civil society and duty bearers In pursuit of which rights? (our work on themes) Did/will do what? Activities and interventions against plan, core interventions, key actions, expenditure and investment, problems and lessons Resulting in what changes? 4 areas of changes: rights, improvement of conditions, increase in the organization/action of civil society in support of the rights of the poor and excluded For whom to what extent? How many women, girls, men, boys (who re we benefiting?, Was the change sustainable With what impact on relations of power? POWER underpins the RTEP Strategy so how did relationships of power shift? And to what degree did AAI and our partners challenge which unjust and unequal power relations? 2- Monitoring Organizational Objectives: Are we accountable (openness and transparency)? Are we effective (sustainable changes, cost conscious)? Are we dynamic (how are we learning and sharing knowledge)? Are we international in our governance and management and in the way we work with shared vision, strategies and agenda across countries and regions?