ActionAID International

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					     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
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
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
    • 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
• 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

                                                            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
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
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
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
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

Are we international in our governance and management
and in the way we work with shared vision, strategies and
agenda across countries and regions?

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