GRANTS MANAGEMENT TRAINING COURSE FOR NON STATE ACTORS IN WEST AFRICA
DATE: 18 – 20 OCTOBER, 2011
VENUE: JARIA HOTEL, ACCRA, GHANA
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Introduction ECOWAS in collaboration with the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI) organised a Specialized Workshop on Grants Management for Non State Actors in Accra, Ghana from the 18 – 20 October, 2011. The objective of the training course was to enhance the Grants Management and Project Proposal writing capacities of Non-State Actors within the West African sub-region. The training course was anchored on an earlier launch for a Call for Proposals with the global objective to strengthen the capacity of NSAs to enable them to play an effective and relevant role in the regional integration process. The training course was aimed at improving NSAs Grants management effectiveness and project proposal writing by defining realistic expected results, monitoring progress towards the achievement of expected results, integrating lessons learned into management decisions and reporting on performance. This report documents the participants’ assessment of the organization and delivery of the course. Section One I: Overall Course Delivery Table 1.0 Areas of Assessment Percentage Rating Participants Outcomes Not Satisfied 3% of
Very Satisfied What is your overall impression of the 86% course? Were your objectives for this course 54% met? Rate your satisfaction with the course 64% training materials Taking into account your knowledge of 83% Grants Management and Project Proposal writing before the workshop, did the workshop help to build your knowledge and skills in this area? How effective was The Discussions 92% the methodology 84% used in the The Exercises course?
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Satisfied 14% 46% 33% 56%
The table above shows the percentage ratings of the participants at the workshop. The total number of participants at the workshop was 28. Total number of respondents was 28. The percentage ratings of the participants’ responses were calculated based on the total number of responses to each question, that is: total number of responses “divided by” total number of participants and “multiplied by” 100, thus (No. of Responses ÷ No. of Participants) ×100% II: Participants Response to Rating 1. Overall impression of the training course The following represents a summary of participants response to the ratings outlined in table above. The participants’ impression about the workshop is documented below: § § § § § § § 2. The trainers were professionals and they used very simple words to communicate. However, 3-days was inadequate to cover the key areas; The training course was very educative, interactive and participatory; Comprehensive and highly impressed with the mode of delivery; Understood basic concepts and information in project proposal formulation that will be implemented in our organizations. Organization and facilitation was satisfactory whereas the pace of learning was about right; The material content was relevant and the facilitation was good particularly with the use of the real life illustrations; and The training course must be conducted for all NSAs over a period of time.
Objectives for the course Below is a summary of responses to the percentage ratings on whether the participants’ objectives were met: § § § § § § • Most of our objectives were met. However, there were few areas that we needed clarifications. In a better position to assist my organization to plan effectively with results in mind; Enhanced capacity/knowledge in Grants management; Gained in-depth knowledge on how to develop the logFrame; The objectives set were achieved; Acquired a new set of tools to develop problem tree and analysis; and Objective was met but the three days was inadequate;
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Level of Satisfaction with the Course Training materials The participants’ responses to the above question include: § § § § § § § § § Excellent training materials and delivery of workshop; The materials should have been distributed before the training; The standard of materials was excellent; The materials were satisfactory and excellent interpretation; The materials were adequate and complete; Clear, concise and understandable; Laptops should have been made available to participants; The materials were distributed on timely basis; The training session should have been captured on audio and video.
Did the workshop help build on your knowledge and skills in research? Participants acknowledged the relevance of the workshop and indicated how beneficial it was in terms of knowledge acquisition and skills enhancement. Below are a summary of their responses: § § § § § § § § § Gained enormous insights into project proposal writing; Learned that projects should be carried out jointly with other NSAs; Enhanced knowledge and outlined certain elusive issues that are usually overlooked in project formulation; Gained the ability to analyze and manage a project within the grants management and budgeting framework; Helped to identify the pit falls in grants management and project proposal formulation; Developed knowledge in stakeholders analysis, problem and objective analysis; The participants have been equipped with skills especially, on the LogFrame; The resource persons were very accommodating, provoked insightful discussions and patient with participants; and It was highly interactive.
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How effective was the methodology used? The workshop employed theoretical and practical delivery approaches. In the assessment the participants indicated that: I: Discussions § § § § § § § § § § § § § It is easily applicable in other countries; Effective discussions and the participants shared practical and relevant experiences and information; The method of delivery was simple but short time for the overall course; Participants were allowed to express their opinions; Detailed and participatory; Satisfactory, although it was unnecessarily prolonged in some instances; Truly enriching and highlighted certain areas that are usually overlooked; Yes, the workshop improved my capacities in project proposal formulation and grants management. Repetition of certain questions prolonged the training workshop; Limited discussion time on the third day; Benefited from plurality of ideas and insights; and Facilitators spent too much time on grants and logical frame Wasted too much time on introduction on the first day.
II: The Practical Session § § § § § § § § § § Time allotted to the group work was insufficient; The practical sessions assumed a teacher-student mode of delivery, which was good; The limited timeframe did not allow enough practical sessions to be undertaken; Effective and took participants’ concerns into account; Provided the platform for more analysis and brainstorming; Very good, enhanced the understanding of the theoretical concepts; The group exercises exposed us to the advantages of working in a team; Provided the opportunity to share and learn from other participants; and Appropriate for the problem tree, objectives and the logFrame. We needed more exercises to gain practical skills.
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Session Two Course Content How effective were the course components (listed in the box) in building your knowledge and skills. Table 1.1 Grants Management Course 1 2 3 4 5 6 Training Rating in Percentages Very useful 89% 93% 93% 100% 91% 95% May useful 11 5% 7% 9% 5% be May not be useful 2% -
Overview project cycle and project cycle management Basic concepts in resource mobilization The Logframe, and its link to resource mobilization and grants management Developing a winning proposal Concepts of Budgeting Grants Management
Table 1.1 above shows the percentages ratings of participants’ responses to the questions outlined in the table. The percentages were calculated based on the total number of responses to question. Write one or two sentences to describe what you learned from the course. Participants were required to provide specifically the benefits they derived from participating in the workshop. The responses are summarized below: § § § § § § New knowledge on log frame, problem and objective trees; The log frame was well presented and understood; The method of delivery is all inclusive because all information, evaluations and their justifications were considered; Learned that thoroughness, professionalism and a good strategy are essential elements for winning proposals; Appreciate a specialized training for me on input, output and outcome. I am a bit confused in that area; Acquired new knowledge in monitoring and evaluation skills;
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§ § § § § § § § §
The usefulness of indicators and its management Illuminated my knowledge about the importance of first impressions; It is essential to start a project with the project results in mind; Practical sessions to demonstrate use and application of indicators, outputs, and outcomes results; Learned about Grants management which explains developmental results in the entire cycle of the project; Refreshed on project management and M&E concepts; Learned how to apply Grants Management in the development of logic model, work plan and setting objectives; Learned new ways of managing projects and organization; and How to assess the various levels of projects smartly, including indicators and how to communicate their results appropriately.
Advice for the Trainer in delivering the course § § § § § § § § The practical exercises were very useful and thus should be incorporated into subsequent courses; The number of days for the course should be extended ; Keep up with the good facilitation and research work; Minimize some of the discussions and inputs of participants ; Slides can be disseminated in advance before the training; The slides were too long for the training. It must be reduced and designed according to each session; More time should be allocated to the course for better understanding of the subject; and Use more examples in analysis and assign more group work.
Assessment of the Facilitator § § § § § § § The facilitator accomplished his task well and thus is highly recommended; The facilitator demonstrated a high level knowledge of the subject, and the use of examples to enhance participants’ understanding; The facilitator was excellent, the entire training was participatory; The facilitator is effective. Well done. Keep it up; The facilitator ensured a participatory training sessions which promoted reflection and learning; Excellent facilitation and delivery of workshop. He introduced relevant project experiences to buttress some of the points raised by participants; Delivery and engagement of participants was good. He ensured a unified understanding of the subject before proceeding to the next sessions;
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Respected the divergent views of the participants’ and created the atmosphere for the participants’ to actively contribute and ask questions; and The facilitators were good communicators. However, they did not discuss weaknesses of newly formed CSOs in relation to project proposal formulation.
Assess duration of the course in Percentages Too long 14% Too short 86% About right
From the table above, the percentages calculated were based on the total number of responses. In all, 28 participants answered this section of the questionnaire. Thus sum total of the responses equals 28, and the percentage was calculated as the total number of responses “divided” by total number of participants “multiplied by” 100. For instance, in the Too Short column, 4 out of 28 participants ticked this section. Hence, the 14% was derived by dividing 4 by 28 and multiplying the answer by 100.
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