EnCompass conducted an external performance evaluation of The Malawi Girls’ Empowerment through Education and Health Activity (ASPIRE), a 4-year USAID activity implemented by Save the Children. ASPIRE, which began in 2014, aims to improve girls’ academic achievement and empowerment through innovative, cross-sectoral interventions addressing education, health, and structural and cultural factors that influence girls’ performance. ASPIRE will reach 182,000 girls aged 10 to 19.
EnCompass supports the MacArthur Foundation’s Big Bet On Nigeria program as its Evaluation and Learning partner. The On Nigeria program focuses on reducing corruption in the country by encouraging accountability, transparency, and good governance in many sectors of society, including electricity distribution, universal basic education, home grown school feeding, criminal justice, and media and journalism.
This briefing provides a summary of the findings laid out in the comprehensive review of community schools in Zambia, which provides an in-depth review of community schools, as they exist today, through the lens of two key questions:
While a number of studies have examined community schools in Zambia, there has not been a comprehensive overview since 2006. Many of these studies focus on a narrow topic within the field of community schools, or have small sample sizes that impede the ability to generalize broadly. Consequently, there is a need to synthesize findings across studies and data sources in order to present an accurate “big picture” and summarize the most important factors that will have bearing on current and future community school initiatives.
How do project implementers design an intervention in a dynamic environment, when they don’t know how beneficiaries will respond? And how do evaluators design a flexible process to get decision-makers the information they need, when the theory of change is participant-driven and activities involve substantial grassroots initiative? One recent EnCompass evaluation explores these questions—with exciting results.