Livelihoods in the Philippines: Impact evaluation of the project 'scaling up sustainable livelihoods in Mindanao'

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This evaluation is presented as part of the Effectiveness Review Series 2014/15, selected for review under the livelihoods thematic area. This report documents the findings of a quasi-experimental impact evaluation carried out in January 2015 that sought to assess the impact of the activities of the 'scaling up sustainable livelihoods in Mindanao’ project. The project was implemented from 2011 to 2013 in three provinces of Mindanao by four different partner organizations: Paglilingkod Batas Pangkapatiran Foundation (PBPF)
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  EFFECTIVENESS REVIEW SERIES ‘enhancing effectiveness through evidence-based learning’  The overall objective of the project was to widen livelihood options in small-scale agriculture for rural women and men in order to achieve food security and sustainable incomes. The project aimed to achieve three objectives: rstly, to increase income as well as assets for the project participants; secondly inuencing local and national governance environment towards pro-poor economic development; nally increasing women’s leadership among the project participants, changing economic relationship between men and women, and increasing political participation of women. The project was implemented in three provinces of Mindano by four different partner organisations: Paglilingkod Batas Pangkapatiran Foundation (PBPF), Kasanyangan Rural Development Foundation Inc. (KRDFI), Rural Development Institute of Sultan Kundarat (RDISK), and Integrated Conservation Solutions – Asia (ICS-Asia). Project outcomesProject goals  ActivitiesIncrease in income Increase in revenues from agricultural production Increased decision making in the household Increase involvement / awareness in community plan meetings Increase in diversifcationIncrease in group participation Increased confdence in intervening in meetingsMunicipal plan and local government provide funds Increase in quantity  produced Selling agricultural production to community associations Increase in quantity  soldMarket consolidationProviding technical planting materialTraining on: technical support, planning and climate change adaptation, marketingIncrease in wealth and assets Increase in women’s leadership Increase in governance Decrease in transport costs Selling at increased price Increased quality  production Increase skillsIncrease access to technology Increase in personal income  Advocacy and inuencing local institutions Scaling up sustainable livelihoods in Mindanao Project date: January 2011 - April 2013 Evaluation: February 2015Publication: November 2015 Livelihoods Philippines2014/15 This diagram presents how the project was expected to achieve change, through project activities and outcomes that were expected to contribute to the overall goal of the project. Outcomes and goals that found evidence of positive impact are highlighted in green, those where evidence of positive impact was not clear or not found are shown in white. EFFECTIVENESS REVIEW SERIES 2014/15: AFGHANISTAN BANGLADESH CAMBODIA CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLICCHAD ETHIOPIA LEBANON NICARAGUA PAKISTAN PHILIPPINES PHILIPPINES (humanitarian) POLICY & PRACTICE WEBSITE SOMALIA SOUTH SUDAN   TANZANIA THAILAND UGANDA YEMEN  Results Evaluation Method Full version of this report and more information can be found at Oxfam’s Policy and Practice website: www.oxfam.org.uk/effectiveness For more information, contact Oxfam’s Programme Quality Team - ppat@oxfam.org.uk    Evidence of positive impact Commentary Income and wealth Project outcome The evaluation found, on average, higher levels of income (measured by household expenditure) and material wealth (measured by an index taking into account household ownership of goods and assets, as well as housing conditions) for project participants; however the difference with the comparison group is not statistically signicant. It would appear that yearly expenditure was 49 per cent higher for the intervention group than the matched comparison group, and the difference was statistically signicant. Revenues and production from agricultural products Intervention households were on average more likely to be selling their agricultural products compared with comparison group. They were also selling higher quantities as well as selling a greater variety of agricultural products. However this evaluation did not nd evidence of higher revenues from agricultural sales between intervention and comparison households. There was some evidence of improvements in access to markets, although its magnitude was small. Finally there was no evidence of improved access to technology among project farmers. Governance (awareness) The evaluation found evidence of higher awareness of and participation to community plans in project communities. NoMixed YesThe review adopted a quasi-experimental impact evaluation design, which involved comparing households that had been supported by the project with households in neighbouring municipalities that had similar characteristics in 2007.  A household survey was carried out with 300 project participants and 500 comparison households never involved in any Oxfam project. At the analysis stage, the statistical tools of propensity-score matching and multivariate regression were used to control for demographic and baseline differences between the project and comparison households to provide additional condence when making estimates of the project’s impact. See the ‘How are effectiveness reviews carried out?’ document for more information on evaluation design. Household data were collected with face to face interviews using digital devices. See the ‘Going Digital: Using digital technology to conduct Oxfam’s Effectiveness Reviews’ for more information. Details about specic evaluation design used in this case are contained in the full report of the Effectiveness Review. Going forward  As a result of the review, the team in the Philippines will share the results with the partner organisations involved in the project, so learning from the evaluation is captured by all parties, and immediate steps are taken to improve three key areas: project participant targeting; monitoring, and; women’s engagement. Targeting choices will largely be improved with the onset of new projects. The process of identifying project participants will draw on experience from other teams, and the choices of targeted participants will be reviewed by a committee at the start of future projects. Monitoring and evaluation needs to be modernised, utilising technology where appropriate, so data is collected in real time, improving the opportunity for accountability and analysis that leads to learning. Digital collection and analysis of data will be utilised in one particular project over the coming 6 months to introduce the real time nature of monitoring. Applying this approach will be explored with other Economic Justice projects so a greater percentage of projects produce data that can be immediately used for accountability and learning, and drawn upon for evaluations/analysis. Women’s Engagement, particularly at the household decision making level, is a key cross cutting element of the new Oxfam Country Strategy. The country team is also implementing existing projects on care work and women’s leadership. Learning from these initiatives will be captured and shared, with support mechanisms put in place so that both the project team and partners can make changes to their projects. Photo credit: Ana Maria L. Caspe/Oxfam Women’s empowerment The evaluation found some evidence of improved condence in intervening in meetings and higher group participation. Women involved into the project were on average involved in a greater number of groups; however there were some questions around the quality of this engagement as projects participants were less likely to report being involved in group activities than comparison women. There was no evidence in higher share of personal income or higher household decision making power which can be attributed to the project. Mixed
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