External Evaluation of FIDH Freedom of Assembly Program 2020-2023

Press release

1. Introduction

About FIDH

The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) federates 188 national human rights organizations from 116 countries into a worldwide movement for human rights. Established in 1922, FIDH defends all civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights as set out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. FIDH’s approach to defending human rights is founded on the belief that sustainable societal change and genuine respect for human rights can only succeed if they are guided and led by local actors. Therefore, the Federation unites independent civil society organizations from around the world into a diverse and collaborative network and seeks through its actions to build the capacity of civil society and human rights defenders to effect change. It acts at national, regional, and international levels in support of its member and partner organisations to address human rights abuses and consolidate democratic processes. Its primary beneficiaries are national human rights organisations who are members of FIDH, and through them, the victims of human rights violations.

FIDH employs a range of actions, including: training, facilitation of experience-sharing and other actions to strengthen capacity of and support for civil society; urgent appeals, material and emergency assistance and other actions to support and protect human rights defenders; fact finding, solidarity and judicial monitoring missions; publication and circulation of reports; advocacy at national, regional and international levels; strategic litigation; mobilisation of media, social networks and awareness campaigns.

FIDH works globally in several regions including Asia, Africa, Latin America, and Eastern Europe. In Asia, FIDH works with 30 member organizations and numerous partner organizations.

FIDH freedom of peaceful assembly program in Asia

FIDH carried out a 30-month regional program from 2021-2023 on the right to freedom of peaceful assembly in Asia, with the overall objective to enable civil society to mobilize more effectively to defend the right to freedom of assembly in the region. During the first phase of the program, this project created a regional roster of assembly observers from the Asia region, produced several country-specific reports on the right to freedom of peaceful assembly, created a sub-grant system with FIDH member/ partner organization in five countries/territories, conducted international advocacy missions, and carried out several other activities.

2. Evaluation objective and scope

The objective of the evaluation is to assess the effectiveness of the freedom of peaceful assembly program during the full duration it was carried out from 2021-2023.

The evaluators shall:

• Evaluate the extent the activities carried out under the freedom of assembly program contributed to intended results and outcomes.
• Assess the achievements of the program and its long-term impact on civil society actors who were involved in the implementation of the program.
• Evaluate the efficacy of the program in adapting to regional and global limitations and challenges faced from 2021-2023.
• Identify lessons learned through the adaptations to limitations of the program and COVID-19 and shrinking civic space in Asia.
• Provide recommendations for improving future programmes following on from the one evaluated.

3. Evaluation purpose: Intended use and intended users

The primary intended users of the evaluation are FIDH and the principal donor organization of the freedom of peaceful assembly program.

The results of the evaluation will also be shared with key FIDH partners, prospective funding organizations of the second phase of the program, as well as with FIDH staff and its International Board.

The intended uses of this evaluation are to:
• Identify lessons learned and produce recommendations to accompany FIDH learning on the effectiveness of the freedom of peaceful assembly program;
• Contribute to primary funding bodies evaluation of the impact of their support, and provide input into decisions on prospective continued support.

4. Evaluation questions
The objective of the evaluation is to assess the relevance, effectiveness, and sustainability of FIDH freedom of peaceful assembly program in Asia.

• To what extent was FIDH’s intervention logic clear and coherent with its intended results of the freedom of assembly program?
• To what extent was FIDH capable of adapting the freedom of assembly program to the challenges faced by COVID-19 restrictions and shrinking civil space in Asia?
• To what extent was FIDH capable of adapting the freedom of assembly program and responding to emerging human rights challenges, changing contexts, needs of rights holders, and/or needs and priorities of member organisations in the Asia region?
• To what extent has the freedom of assembly program been planned and implemented with rights holders’ participation, perspective, and a human rights-based approach?
• To what extent have lessons learned (what works well and less well) been used to improve and adjust activity implementation?
• To what extent has FIDH’s work been implemented in a transparent and accountable manner?

• To what extent have the activities contributed to intended results and outcomes?1
• What were the major factors (internal and external) influencing the achievement or non-achievement of intended results?

• To what extent are the results achieved from 2020-2023 likely to continue after the end of program?

5. Methodology and methods for data collection and analysis
The evaluator should facilitate the entire evaluation process with careful consideration of how everything that is done will affect the use of the evaluation. It is expected that the evaluators, in their tender, present: i) how intended users will participate in, and contribute to, the evaluation process and ii) methodology and methods for data collection that create space for reflection, discussion and learning between the intended users of the evaluation. Evaluators should take into consideration appropriate measures for collecting data in cases where sensitive or confidential issues are addressed, and avoid presenting information that may be harmful to some stakeholder groups.

Methods for data collection may include:
• Reports, press releases, and other documents produced under the freedom of assembly program.
• Evaluations submitted by participants who following various online and in-person workshops and meetings of the freedom of assembly program.
• Interviews with FIDH Asia Desk staff, representatives of FIDH member and partner organizations that contributed to the freedom of assembly program, members of the roster of assembly observers.
• Statistics and reach of social media campaigns and similar communications activities carried out under the freedom of assembly program.

The methodology proposed for the evaluation may include the following steps:
• Document review.
• Internal and external interviews.
• Data analysis.
• Preparation of draft report and recommendations.
• Discussion of findings with FIDH.
• Presentation of the final report and recommendations.

The evaluation report should be supported by concrete examples relating to FIDH’s actions to strengthen civil societies capacity to defend the right to freedom of assembly in Asia. The report should also provide concrete recommendations on the basis of its findings and analysis, which will help inform FIDH’s upcoming planning process for the continuation of the program.

6. Organisation of evaluation management

The FIDH Asia Desk will facilitate communications between all parties.

FIDH steering committee will include representatives from the Department of Operations and Department of Fundraising. The steering committee will:
• Select the evaluators on the basis of the agreed terms of reference.
• Review and validate the evaluators’ proposed methodology.
• Review the draft report.
• Participate in the reporting back.
• Provide updates on the process, and the findings and recommendations to FIDH.

7. Time schedule and deliverables

The evaluation will be undertaken between September and December 2023, with the following key dates and deliverables:

• August: Finalization and approval of terms of reference and publication of call for proposals and reception of offers (FIDH).
• September: Contractualization with evaluators (FIDH) and development of inception note (evaluators).
• October: Document review and interviews (evaluators).
• November: Data analysis and report drafting (evaluators).
• Early December: Discussion of draft report (evaluators and FIDH).
• End of December: Presentation of final report (all parties).

8. Evaluation team qualifications

The evaluator(s) shall have:
• At least five years of experience of evaluating large and complex projects and programs.
• At least five years of experience of evaluating strategic partnerships and multi-stakeholder programs.
• At least five years of experience of evaluating human rights programs.
• Knowledge of FIDH’s organization and mode of operation or at least knowledge of international human rights NGOs community, methods and challenges.

9. Financial and human resources
It is expected that the evaluation will require up to 60 days in total.

The evaluation bid should be within the range of 10,000-15,000 Euros.

10. Submission and evaluation of offers

The offer will compulsorily include:
• An introductory and short chapter detailing the comprehension by tenderers of the assignment and its main challenges.
• A chapter detailing the tentative methodology to conduct the evaluation (this methodology will then be finalised in the Inception Note).
• A short analysis of the main risks and remedy measures of the assignment.
• A chapter detailing the competencies of the evaluator(s) to the work to be undertaken and how the tasks will be organized.
• A financial offer.
• Annex: The CVs of the proposed expert(s) (max length of each CV: 5 pages);
• Annex: The proposed timetable.

The maximum length of the offer is 5 (five) pages excluding annexes.

Tenderers shall specify the total cost of the assignment, in the form of an hourly fee for each category of personnel and any other reimbursable costs. Reimbursable costs must as a minimum, when applicable, be specified with costs for per diem, accommodation and type of flight ticket, to make sure that economic class is used. All types of costs shall be given in Euros, excluding VAT.

Offers should be submitted by e-mail to asia@fidh.org

Deadline for submission: 15 September 2023.

The offer with the best value for money will be selected based on the following criteria:

• Understanding of the terms of reference and the aim of the services to be provided.
• Overall methodological approach, quality control approach, appropriate mix of tools and estimate of difficulties and challenges.
• Expertise of the proposed evaluator(s).

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