Developmental Evaluation for the Sharekna Program in Tunisia
From October 2016 to March 2019, FHI 360 implemented the USAID-funded Sharekna Project to Support Youth and Empower Local Communities (Sharekna) in four target communities in Tunisia: Cité Ettadhamen, Douar Hicher, Sidi Bouzid, and El Kef.
The activity worked to mitigate the underlying drivers and contextual factors around violent extremism (VE). Both USAID and FHI 360 were committed to generate learning for CVE-related programs through rigorous and systematic methods. As a result, activities were designed, implemented, and monitored cohesively to learn and adapt in response to contextual changes and emergent opportunities and risks. In close collaboration with USAID/ME/TS, FHI360 applied USAID’s Collaborative, Learning, and Adapting Framework through a developmental evaluation (DE). Built on systems thinking, DE is an approach to gather, analyze, and apply real-time data to ongoing interventions in which the processes, interventions, and outcomes are unknown or evolving.
DE was selected for three reasons: First, we did not know which needs or activities would surface from the communities, DE provided a framework and recommended systems to feed current, highly-localized information to field staff. Second, DE allowed USAID and FHI 360 to learn more about how community-level drivers, national trends, and contextual factors interact vis-à-vis VE in Tunisia, and how USAID-funded projects could effectively address the drivers. Third, it aligned well with Sharekna’s core participatory methodologies, which was designed to ensure activities were community driven. As a result, the overall, phased process was highly iterative, so activities could develop and respond to the unique needs of a specific community.
As a result, funding stretched further so we could do more, and could customize solutions in partnership with local communities. More broadly, the information gathered through the DE, coupled with adaptive management, was highly informative and provided lessons relevant to future programming in Tunisia.