ISG has recently been selected by Gorta-Self Help Africa (GSHA) to undertake an evaluation of its 2011-2015 Strategic Plan and Irish Aid Program Funding (IAPF) Grant.
GSHA works with smallholder famers and their families in over 10 countries in western and eastern Africa to make sustainable improvements in their livelihoods from both intensification and diversification of agriculture and greater integration into markets. Under its Strategic Plan, and with Irish Aid support, GSHA aimed to achieve the following objectives: 1) enable smallholder farmers to achieve viable livelihoods from intensification and diversification of agriculture and greater integration into markets; 2) influence others to enable smallholder farmers in Africa to prosper; and 3) continue to be “fit for purpose” in terms of its financial stability, staff performance, and current systems, policies, and procedures. During this time, GSHA implemented over 100 projects with over 50 implementing partners through five country programs and one regional program.
The evaluation included an independent analysis of progress towards the three strategic objectives above, and aims to contribute to an improvement and refinement of GSHA policies, process, and methods as it formulates and implements its new strategic plan. Additionally, this assignment provided an evaluation of the utilization of IAPF towards achieving its stated outcomes and impact, which will be shared with Irish Aid to inform its review of IAPF for design of future funding schemes.
Data was collected through field visits to Ethiopia and Malawi as well as virtually, and consisted of a document review, key informant interviews, focus group discussions, quantitative surveys, and direct observation of program activities.