Expression of Interest
HELEN KELLER INTERNATIONAL
Evaluation Team, Suaahara II – Integrated Nutrition Program (INP)
Co-founded in 1915 by Helen Keller, Helen Keller International is dedicated to saving and improving the sight and lives of the world’s vulnerable. We combat the causes and consequences of blindness, poor health and malnutrition with more than 120 programs in 20 African and Asian countries, as well as in the United States. Renowned for our reliability, efficiency and high level of technical expertise, Helen Keller International promotes the development of large-scale, sustainable solutions to some of the most pressing issues in public health.
Suaahara II is a five-year (2016-2021), $63 million integrated program dedicated to improving the health and nutrition status of women and children who fall within the 1000-day period from conception until the child reaches 24 months of age; the crucial period during which nutritional interventions have optimal impact on child growth and development. In 42 of Nepal’s 77 districts, Suaahara II supports the Government of Nepal in expanding health and nutrition services. Suaahara II also works at the household and community levels throughout all communities of these districts to improve behaviors related to health and family planning; diets and nutrition; water, sanitation and hygiene including menstrual hygiene; agriculture/homestead food production; and integrated nutrition governance. Suaahara II collaborates with existing projects and private sector groups towards shared objectives. Suaahara II builds on its predecessor, Suaahara I, which was also a five-year (2011-2016) investment in many of the same communities and with overlapping thematic areas and intervention activities.
Prior to the start of household and community level interventions, a quasi-experimental impact evaluation was designed for Suaahara I. The main research question of the impact evaluation was the effect of Suaahara on key maternal and child under-nutrition indicators (e.g. stunting, wasting, underweight, and anemia). The impact evaluation baseline survey in 2012 used a multi-stage cluster sampling to randomly sample almost 4,000 households with a child 0-5 years of age (half in intervention and half in comparison areas) was conducted in 2012. A mixed-method process evaluation study at the household, health services, and policy level was conducted in 2014.
Scope of Work:
Suaahara II will be hiring a team of evaluator(s), who will lead Suaahara II’s evaluation design, execution and reporting, while work closely with the Suaahara II Sr. Technical Advisor and an Evaluation Advisory Group. Evaluators will be selected to form a team of quantitative and qualitative researchers to complete the original quantitative impact evaluation as well as health systems and policy level studies to ensure that all aspects of the Suaahara program are captured. Examples of evaluation questions will include Suaahara’s effect on: key maternal and child under-nutrition indicators; multi-sectoral knowledge and behavioural outcomes of interest; reducing inequities in primary and secondary outcomes. Additionally, the evaluation will seek to answer how HFP (a sub-set of overall Suaahara beneficiaries) families and communities have benefited from Suaahara and Suaahara’s contributions to improving health systems and services and the policy environment for nutrition.
Careful attention to how contextual factors have changed since the original design is required and this includes but is not limited to: 1) earthquakes, floods, and other natural disasters wiping out program inputs, 2) program expansion into 4 of the 8 original comparison districts, 3) age range of households in the evaluation versus program expansion, and 4) interventions in comparison areas because of Suaahara spill over, but also other government and NGO activities.
Candidates who have worked on similar prior evaluations and have excellent evaluation skills are encouraged to submit an expression of interest. We are particularly interested in those who have prior experience working in Nepal (or similar South Asian settings) and who have worked on multi-sectoral program evaluation. All who are interested will be invited to an online meeting to find out more about the intervention and evaluation plans and to ask related questions prior to applying to be on the evaluation team.
Description of Work:
Three phases of work are envisioned:
- Finalize study design: Desk work to review impact and process evaluation baseline survey design and results; programmatic documentation; and monitoring results to date; Meetings via skype, email, and other means will be necessary to engage with Suaahara and HKI staff. A trip to Nepal (or other location TBD) may be required in which the Evaluator(s) will propose at least 2 study design options and engage the team and an advisory group to finalize the design. (October 2019-February 2020)
- Finalize study tools and technical oversight of study implementation: Study tools will need to be finalized and some engagement for oversight with local firms and researchers hired for data collection. Suaahara II will take primary responsibility for translation/back-translation and ODK programming of the study tools, local ethics approval, and the sub-contracting and management of the local survey firm (training, piloting, data collection, management, etc.). (March 2020-Auguest 2020)
- Data analysis, writing-up, and dissemination: in collaboration with Suaahara II, key findings will need to be documented for a diverse audience. (Sept 2020 to Feb 2021)
- Evaluation protocols (Phase 1)
- Workshop report: Design of Suaahara II Evaluation (Phase 1)
- Evaluation tools (Phase 2)
- Workshop report: Results Sharing of Suaahara II Impact Evaluation (Phase 2)
- Report/manuscript and PPT slide-deck up of all key findings (Phase 3)
- All cleaning and analysis files (e.g. Stata do files, coded transcripts) (Phase 3)
 Lancet 2008 series on Maternal and Child Nutrition
About the Organization
Established in 1915 with Helen Keller as a founding trustee, Helen Keller International (HKI) is dedicated to saving the sight and lives of the most vulnerable and disadvantaged. Headquartered in New York City and a satellite office in Washington D.C., HKI currently conducts programs in 21 countries in Africa and Asia, as well as in the United States. Renowned for its reliability, efficiency and high level of technical expertise, HKI promotes the development of sustainable, large-scale programs that deliver effective preventative and curative services for nutrition, eye health, and neglected tropical diseases. The hallmark of the organization’s work is its proven success in developing, testing, and scaling-up health interventions, and integrating them within government and community structures to support and build local capacity and sustainable solutions.