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Technological Advance to Bolster Freedom of Expression in Iraq (TABEIR) Project

Call for proposals- Final Evaluation, Iraq

Background

The Iraq Foundation (IF) is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization and a registered CSO in Iraq. Established in 1991, its mission is to promote democracy, human rights, and civil society in Iraq. IF is an Iraqi-founded and Iraqi-led organization that is also independent, non-partisan, and espouses the principle of pluralism. IF is uniquely positioned as a hybrid organization based in Washington, D.C., where the main office monitors activities on daily basis. It also has offices in Baghdad and Basra from which it implements projects in all Iraqi provinces through networks of local NGO partners, academic institutions, and professional bodies. Staff travel regularly throughout Iraq to oversee projects and train, monitor, and evaluate participants. IF seeks to promote democracy and protect FOE by empowering civic actors to become agents for change. To fulfill this mission, Iraq Foundation works with NGOs, civic leaders, and academics as well as a number of Iraqi institutions. Through the TABEIR project, in particular, IF is targeting Freedom of Expression in Iraq and aiming to protect and expand it by:

(1)   Enabling expansion and enhancement Iraqi activists’ use of communication technologies,

(2)   Helping to form coalitions of Iraqi activists that pool information and build on synergies,

(3)   Encouraging increased creative activism on FOE issues, and

(4)   Encouraging stepped-up, coordinated advocacy and awareness-raising to bring about change

TABEIR project, an initiative funded by the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA), started on October 2013 and is scheduled for completion by November 1st 2014. Please find the attached TABEIR project Timeline for full details on project activities.

Please also visit http://www.iraqfoundation.org/projects/tabeir-project/  & www.tabeiriraq.org for detailed Information about TABEIR project activities.

 

Purpose of Assignment:

To provide an external evaluation of the Iraq Foundation’s TABEIR project in order to assess the results it achieved compared to its objectives in accordance with the project proposal and results framework.  The consultant should outline the degree to which IF has achieved the intended results in terms of outputs as well as outcomes. The evaluation should also include challenges facing IF based on lessons learned. One important aspect of the evaluation is assessing whether the project has managed to reach its target group and if its method is relevant to the Iraqi context.   Based on the results of the findings, the consultant should give recommendations for how to improve future programs.

 

Contact Information

All proposals must be submitted by September 1st, 2015 to:

Basma Fakri at fakri.b@iraqfoundation.org  and

Humam Rajab at humam@iraqfoundation.org

Questions should be addressed to humam@iraqfoundation.org .

 

Description of assignment:

Key tasks:

  1. Make an assessment of the relevance of the project in the Iraqi context
  2. Make an assessment of IF M&E capacity and structure. How does IF follow up their projects and do they have efficient methods to monitor their projects?
  3. Present an analysis of IF’s coordination with similar NGOs in Iraq
  4. Make an assessment of local partners’ capacity in Iraq and their perception of the cooperation with Iraq Foundation
  5. Summarize the most important results achieved during the project period.
  6. What has worked well, what are the main challenges to the program, and how can IF deal with these challenges in the future? What (if any) unforeseen and unanticipated results/experiences were there?
  7. How much/well did the Iraq Foundation address gender equality and youth? What has been achieved in this regard during the project period?
  8. Develop a baseline assessment to measure whether and how the program activities are making a difference by comparing the data in the baseline assessment against the data in the final evaluation.
  9. Develop tools such as surveys, focus groups, interviews, etc. to measure the outputs and outcomes of the project.
  10. Conduct field visits aiming at monitoring and evaluating the project. The consultant must visit and evaluate IF offices in Basra and Baghdad, as well as at least 3 other provinces where IF is implementing their project.

 

Expected Outputs

  1. Produce field evaluation reports
  2. A drafted final report submitted to IF. SIDA and IF will have two weeks to make comments on the final report based on the TOR.
  3. Based on SIDA and IF’s comments, a final evaluation report produced and submitted to Iraq Foundation

 

Duration of the Consultancy: 3 Months ( October-December, 2015)

The evaluation will be conducted in three months starting from the 1st of October and advancing in accordance with the following milestones:

  • Week 1: Sign the contract and hold kickoff meeting with project staff
  • Week 2: Design survey tools
  • Week 3-5: Desk review
  • Week 6-7: Conduct field visits and produce field evaluation reports.
  • Week 8-9: Send the draft final report for review and approval by Iraq Foundation and SIDA
  • Week 10-11: SIDA and IF provide comments on the final report based on the TOR
  • Week 11-12: Final report that incorporates all comments will be submitted to IF

Cost Breakdown

To be added by the consultant

Nature of Assignment: 

End of project evaluation.

Key partners in the project

  • National network of 10 NGO defenders of FOE located in Erbil, Kirkuk, Diyala, Two in Baghdad, Babil, Kut, Kerbala, Maysan and Basrah.
  • International Center for Journalists (ICFJ) – Washington D.C.
  • 2,025 FOE defenders located in the 9 provinces mentioned above.

Qualification of the consultant

The selected evaluator should possess the following qualifications:

  1. Have extensive experience in conducting evaluations in Iraq.
  2. Academic degrees in relevant field such as; Political Science, Sociology, Development Studies, Human Rights and/or other relevant areas.
  3. Knowledgeable in research methods, particularly on mixed-methods and participatory research
  4. Skilled in quantitative and qualitative data analysis
  5. Experience evaluating international development projects and familiarity with SIDA’s development polices (or those of other likeminded donors).
  6. Have excellent Arabic & English writing and speaking ability
  7. Professional experience in the area of democracy and human rights, preferably experience of evaluations of FOE projects.
  8. Minimum 6 years of experience evaluating international development cooperation
  9. Able to communicate complex research, statistics, and data analysis issues orally and in writing in a clear, concise and well organized manner

 

Application Materials

Iraq Foundation seeks proposals from individuals or organizations interested in conducting this evaluation. Applicants should submit a proposal in English that includes:

  1. Detailed description of the evaluator’s qualifications;
  2. Description and justification of proposed evaluation methodology including an evaluation strategy and description of tools and techniques that will be used to collect and analyze information;
  3. Draft work plan;
  4. Project budget.

 

On June 29th, 2015, Iraq Foundation staff-member Tanyh Lowis attended a meeting organized by the Ministry for Women’s Affairs and chaired by Minister Bayan Nouri. The meeting was attended by representatives of Iraq’s civil society and resulted in the foundation of an emergency working group to implement the emergency National Action Plan (NAP) established under UN Resolution 1325. The working group consists of civil society representatives and high ranking government officials from all over Iraq. The working group will be aiding implementation of the emergency NAP to support IDP women inside and outside of camps, in addition to all victimized women who have been affected by the recent conflict in Iraq more generally. The working group will issue a report to highlight the emergency NAP’s progress by July 29th, 2015.

Ministry of Women- 1325 mtg

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On Tuesday June 9th, Ms. Rend al-Rahim, president of the Iraq Foundation, chaired a meeting to discuss the impact that the crisis in Iraq and the release of its Emergency National Action Plan will have upon the foundation’s AL-RASID project.

Since the Iraqi government released the original National Action Plan (NAP), becoming the first Middle Eastern Country to commit itself to the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 (Women, Peace, and Security), the Iraq Foundation has been working with partner NGO’s to monitor the strides made in Baghdad, Basra, Erbil, Babil and Ninewa toward women’s rights and representation. It has also worked toward building the capacity of national and local actors to implement the NAP and address GBV and raising awareness among boys and men.

However, with the onset of instability and security challenges to the government, it has amended the provisions of the NAP. This meeting targeted ways in which to adjust to these changes, ultimately incorporating them into AL-RASID’s Monitoring and Evaluation and strategy to increase the number of provincial task forces in the project’s target provinces.


 

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On May 24th 2015, the Iraq Foundation worked in coordination with Entisar Ali al-Jubouri, head of the Women and Children parliamentary committee, to hold a daylong workshop for newly elected officials inside the House of Representatives building. The meeting was led by IF president, Ms. Rend Al-Rahim, along with the other MPs and high rank government officials who are particularly knowledgeable on women, peace and security issues. The focus of this event was to increase the newly elected MPs’ awareness of relevant parliamentary committees such as the Committee for Women: Legal Committee. Forty-two government officials attended the meeting, and discussed various topics such as the specific protection needs of women and girls in conflict zones. Additionally, they focused on promoting women’s participation in addressing gender perspectives in peace processes, and discussed the value of empowering women and girls as active agents in peace and security. The workshop resulted in the drafting of ten recommendations to empower women, which will be presented to the cabinet in June.

 

Al-Rasid Meeting

IF Recently completed a number of events during the no cost extension of the WIES project including:

 

An advocacy event in Baghdad
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A Family Financial Planning Session
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Job Fairs

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and Marketing Training

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The three-day workshop was held at Al-Mansour Hotel in Baghdad and came to a close on Wednesday March 18, 2015.  The Workshop/training was attended and addressed by IF executive director Ms. Basma Fakri along with 36 government officials including MPs and senior government officials, and 50 civil society actors and task force members from the five provinces of  Erbil, Ninwa plain , Baghdad, Babil and Basrah, who were trained in Activity 1.

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During February 2015 the five partner NGOs in Al-RASID provided 5 trainings for 344 stakeholders in the five provinces distributed as as follows: Erbil 86 (23 female and 73 male), Ninwa plain 60 (26 female and 34 male), Baghdad 41 (10 female and 41 male), Babil 93 (35 female and 58 male) and Basrah 65(31 female and 34 male).The participants represented women’s advocacy organizations, service providers, local community leaders and members of the judiciary and local law enforcement units.

 

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The workshop was held  January 17-18, 2015 and was headed by IF president Ms. Rend Al-Rahim. The workshop introduced the participants to Security Council Resolution 1325 and the Iraq National Action Plan (NAP), and it focused on building coalitions between civic organizations and government entities to implement the NAP.

The secondary goal of the workshop was to prepare  participants from the provinces to act as trainers in order to train local communities in the provinces on 1325, the NAP and coalition building.The workshop also introduced strategies for coalition building among this group, including sharing experiences and ensuring common messaging in preparation for the local training sessions which will be held by the five partner NGOs.

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Periodical meetings with Partner NGOs

On the 28th of March 2015 IF hosted the 6th periodical meeting for the representatives of the 10 partner NGOs. The meeting was dedicated to explore further means to enhance TABEIR map and discuss various scenarios for the FOE short movies which will be produced by the partner NGOs as part of the first round of the small grants funded through TABEIR project.

 

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IF and partner NGOs continued their efforts to provide the In-country training to journalists, citizen journalists and NGO members across Iraq. By the end of March 2015, IF and its partner NGOs trained 1326 participants through conducting 54 training events throughout Iraq.

 

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