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UN Jobs: Final Evaluation of a 5-year McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition Project – Cameroon

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Final Evaluation of a 5-year McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition Project

Below is a summary of the ToR. Please find the full ToR published here:

https://nascents.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/10/Nascent-Solutions-MGD-Cameroon-FY18-ToR-final-evaluation-25OCT2022.pdf

Final Evaluation of a 5-year McGovern-Dole International

Food for Education and Child Nutrition Project in Cameroon

Implementer: Nascent Solutions Inc. (Nascent)

Funder: United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)

Location: Adamawa, East, and North regions of Cameroon

Duration: Around January-July 2023. A mix of home-based and field-based work required.

Purpose of this ToR: To solicit bids for a final evaluation for Nascent’s McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition Project in Cameroon. This will continue a quasi-experimental evaluation setup at baseline (2019) – and continued at midterm (2021) – by an external evaluation firm.

Project Description

This is a five-year project funded under USDA’s McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition Program. Implemented by Nascent, the project is designed to improve the literacy of school-age children through improved literacy instruction, student attentiveness, and student attendance. Secondarily, the project intends to increase the use of positive health and dietary practices. The project runs from October 2018 to September 2023.

While the primary objective is improving literacy, the staple activity is the provision of a daily lunch using food commodities provided by USDA. Nascent seeks to improve:

  • Quality of literacy instruction, through more consistent teacher attendance, provision of better teaching and learning materials, and training of teachers and school administrators;
  • Student attentiveness, through the daily lunch program and extracurricular activities;
  • Student attendance, through school infrastructure improvements, enrollment outreaches, an increased community understanding of education benefits, and reducing health related absences;
  • Use of positive health and dietary practices, through increased knowledge of hygiene, safe food preparation, and nutrition, as well as increased access to clean water and sanitation and preventative health interventions;
  • Education systems, through enhancing the capacity of government and civil society and improving local education- and nutrition-related policies.

The project benefits 180,000 primary-level pupils, family members, teachers, administrators, civil servants, parent-teacher association members, and others associated with 240 primary schools in Cameroon.

The 240 schools have more than 90,000 enrolled students and more than 1,000 teachers. Approximately 62% of the schools are in three French-speaking regions of Cameroon, with the remainder in one English-speaking region. Due to ongoing socio-political unrest in the English-speaking North West region, this final evaluation will focus largely on the French-speaking Adamawa, East, and North regions, which contain 148 project schools. Evaluation of activities in the North West region will be limited to remote key informant interviews.

Partners include the Ministry of Basic Education, Ministry of Public Health, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Ministry of Water and Energy, Ministry of Social Affairs, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (AgReach program).

Purpose and Use

The final evaluation will inform Nascent, USDA, and implementation partners of the project’s impact and progress. We will use its content to 1) assess impact of project implementation; 2) provide a signal of the effectiveness of interventions; 3) document lessons learned; and 4) emphasize the most viable sustainability paths to stakeholders; 5) reassess our theory of change for future projects in Cameroon.

Research Questions

Nascent is primarily interested in understanding its impact based on the following Key Questions. Which changes are attributable to the project? What is the magnitude of those changes?

Key Questions

MGD SO1: What is the percentage of students who, by the end of two grades of primary schooling, demonstrate that they can read and understand the meaning of grade level text?

MGD 1.1: What is the percentage of teachers engaged in “active instruction” for 50%+ of classroom time?

MGD 1.2: What is the percentage of classroom time in which >5 students are “off-task”?

MGD 1.3: What is the average student attendance rate in USDA supported classrooms/schools?

MGD SO2: What is the percentage of school-age children observed correctly washing their hands?

MGD SO2: What is the prevalence of women of reproductive age consuming a diet of minimum diversity?

MGD SO2: Ranked reasons for student absences

Additionally, evaluators will address two additional KAP questions via surveys:

  1. What are the nutrition knowledge, attitudes, and practices of women of reproductive age (15-49 years)?
  2. What are the students’ knowledge, attitudes and practices in terms of hygiene?

Profile of Evaluation Team

Evaluators are welcome to assemble a team as they see fit (not including field level data collectors, who will be recruited separately). Their skills should be complementary, with one identified as the Team Lead, who will bear responsibility for all work products and processes. Firms and groups of independent consultants are welcome to apply. Combined, the team should have the following skills and attributes:

  • Demonstrated experience leading complex impact evaluations.
  • Demonstrated expertise in study design and sampling.
  • Demonstrated experience in the development of quantitative data collection tools and managing field data collection (including mobile).
  • Demonstrated experience in using qualitative methods such as focus group discussions and key informant interviews.
  • Demonstrated experience in data management and analysis using statistical software, including analyzing complex (multi-stage cluster samples) surveys.
  • Demonstrated experience using propensity score matching, principal component analysis, and difference-in-differences analysis techniques.
  • Demonstrated experience in concise, illuminating report writing, including data visualization.
  • Demonstrated experience in training and managing field data collectors and complex logistics.
  • Subject matter expertise in literacy and education.
  • Subject matter expertise in maternal nutrition, child nutrition, and hygiene.
  • Strong teamwork ability across cultures and time zones.
  • Demonstrated ability to effectively communicate with a variety of stakeholders, ranging from young students to government officials.
  • Experience with EGRA.
  • Experience with the Stallings Classroom Observation system.
  • Experience with dietary diversity surveys.
  • Experience with USDA McGovern-Dole projects.
  • Experience in Cameroon. If other criteria are met, preference is given to Cameroon-based teams.
  • High proficiency in written and verbal French and English.

How to apply

Interested evaluators should apply by submitting the following documents in a single PDF no later than 14 November 2022. Submissions must be made via e-mail to [email protected] the subject line “Cameroon final evaluation bid”.

  1. Organizational/team capacity statement outlining relevant evaluation experience and ability to perform the evaluation with methodological rigor. This should be a maximum of 5 pages.
  2. CV of each proposed evaluator with his/her role clearly identified. Please limit CVs to no more than 4 pages per person.
  3. Financial proposal that includes (in US dollars only):
    1. Daily fee and days required for each team member
    2. Estimated expenses attributable to each team member (as noted in the TOR, several expenses are paid for directly by Nascent. Do not include them in this financial proposal). This might include, for example, airfare for team members travelling to Cameroon.
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