Terms of Reference

Terms of Reference: Review of the role of the agro-forestry training centres

1. Introduction and background

Vi Agroforestry is a Swedish NGO that has been operating in East Africa since 1983. The organisation has its headquarters in Stockholm, Sweden and a Regional Office in Nairobi, Kenya, and with country offices in Kampala (Uganda), Mwanza (Tanzania), Kigali (Rwanda) and Kitale (Kenya).

Vi Agroforestry’s  current strategy 2017-2021  aims to have smallholder farmer families in Sub-Saharan Africa having sustainably improved their livelihoods through increased climate change resilience, food security, higher incomes, and greater equality between women and men by 2021.The strategy targets smallholder farmer families living in poverty, with a special focus on women, children and youth, who are members or potential members of democratic farmers’ organisations in areas vulnerable to climate change in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The strategy is implemented through the programme ALIVE (2018-2022), within the framework of which all projects and programme interventions are clustered and contribute to the regional result matrix.

Over the years of operation, Vi Agroforestry has moved from own implementation, working directly with farmers and farmer groups at community level, to implementing through local partner organisations. The change in approach is driven by strengthening of civil society, increased local ownership and ensuring long-term sustainability of results.

During own implementation, the agro-forestry training centres played a crucial role. They served a multi-purpose as demonstration plots; training facility for Vi Agroforestry community facilitators and field coordinators, farmers and farmer groups; nurseries; arboretum; and they enhanced Vi Agroforestry visibility in the country or area of operation. There were training centres in Kitale in Kenya, in Masaka in Uganda, and in Musoma in Tanzania.

With the transition to implementation through partners, and the decision of Global Management to ensure development effectiveness by disbursing 70 % of the regional budget to local partner organisations, it has not been possible to accommodate the full cost of running the training centres in the regional budget.

Vi Agroforestry still has the full responsibility for the training centre in Kitale, Olof Palme Agroforestry Centre (OPAC), whereas the agroforestry centre in Musoma is run by a partner organisation.

This approach was also attempted in Masaka, but for various reasons it was not successful, and the centre is not operating today.

Vi Agroforestry now aims to commission a review of the agroforestry centres and the role they have played for the organisation in the past, as well as assessing if they have a role also in the changed organisational approach, and in that case, what the recommended setup could be.

2. The purpose of the study

The overall purpose of this study is to review the role of the agroforestry centres during the time of direct implementation in the three countries where centres were established, evaluating the value for the organisation and the role they have continued to play when moving to implementation through partners, and what role these centres can play in the future, including their potential to play a role as learning centres.

3. Specific objectives

  1. To evaluate the impact of the agroforestry centres for the organisation, including the target group of smallholder farmer families, from the past to date.
  2. To summarise challenges and positive experiences
  3. To come up with recommendations on how the specific expertise on agroforestry, sustainable agriculture and resilience can be maintained and developed in the organisation
  4. To explore what role these centres can play in the future. This could include research, learning, training, advocacy among other things.
  5. To explore opportunities for running one/two agroforestry learning centres in the region, including what training and learning opportunities that can be offered, and for whom.
  6. To explore methodologies best suited for such learning centres, including popular education and study circle methodology.
  7. To suggest a structure of ownership and sustainability for the expansion.

The past

The study should evaluate the role the centres have had for the development of the organisation, and the spreading of the methodologies, including agroforestry. For the past, the study should consider aspects such as

  • Have the ATCs served as knowledge centres?
  • To what extent did the ATCs provide learning opportunities for promoting sustainable agriculture land management techniques, including agroforestry and sustainable livestock management?
  • How have the ATCs contributed to bio-diversity, and production of seeds and seedlings?
  • What was the importance to farmers/farmer groups?
  • Did the ATCs play a role for staff development?
  • How did the ATCs promote Vi Agroforestry visibility in the countries of operation?
  • How were the ACTs managed financially? Cost efficiency and cost effectiveness?
  • Other relevant reflections on the role of the ATCs?

The present

The study should review the current situation of the two ATCs that are operating, the Musoma centre in Tanzania, and the Olof Palme Training Centre (OPAC) in Kitale, Kenya, considering aspects such as

  • The importance of the ATCs for partner organisations and their members
  • Visibility and impact in the near communities and at national level
  • Knowledge centres, for staff development; for other stakeholders?
  • Do the ATCs offer opportunities for resource mobilisation?
  • Does the current structure for ownership add value, and in that case, to whom?
  • Cost efficiency and cost effectiveness
  • Any other relevant aspects to take into consideration?

The future

The study should investigate and explore potential use of the centres in the future, considering aspects such as

  • Historic value for the organisation
  • Knowledge and learning centres, and for which target group? Beyond the current set-up?
  • Education and Research potential
  • Production
  • Business potential
  • Potential to be regional centres, offering support across the region
  • What value can be added, to farmers’ organisations, grassroot organisations, government institutions? Would it add value to co-manage centres with any of these stakeholders?
  • What value can be added to Vi Agroforestry and We Effect, in terms of learning? What kind of trainings and courses can be developed and offered?
  • What role can the centres play for popular education?
  • Financial aspects, including running costs, cost efficiency and cost effectiveness

4. Strategic Impact

The first strategic target in the Vi Agroforestry Strategy 2017 – 2021 is for Vi Agroforestry to strengthen its organisational capacity to become the go-to expert on agroforestry. In the global work plan 2019, goal 3.1.4 is to “define how to work with learning in the organisation”, and that is translated into the regional work plan in goal 3.1.3: “Develop learning components in the region”. Evaluating if the ATC(s) have a role in achieving this goal is a proposed action. The review will therefore have a strategic impact for developing the organisation.

5. Methodology

The evaluation will be conducted by an external consultant who will work under the supervision and coordination of Regional Director.

The consultant is expected to present a technical and financial proposal for the review and develop appropriate tools.  The methodology and appropriate tools will be discussed and approved by the Vi Agroforestry team before the commencement of the review.

6. The review’s expected deliverables

  • Technical and financial proposal for the review
  • A draft report which will be presented in a seminar to a selected Vi Agroforestry team, and observations and recommendations will be reflected on.
  • A final report, including observations and reflections from the seminar
  • The final report will be submitted to Vi Agroforestry in English.

Outline of the study report

The report will contain the different elements mentioned below:

  • Cover page
  • Table of contents
  • An executive summary that can be used as an independent complete document.
  • The objectives of the review
  • Presentation of the approach and methodologies used
  • Eventual limitations of the review.
  • A presentation of the findings and the analysis thereof (including unexpected, relevant findings). All key priority areas above should be addressed.
  • Conclusions, which will analyse the various questions. Conclusions should be derived from findings and analysis thereof.
  • Recommendations should be clearly related to conclusions and justified but presented separately.

Report appendices that include:

  • The Terms of Reference.
  • The technique used for collecting information (including the people interviewed);
  • The interview guide used.
  • Concepts and list of abbreviations.
  • List of documents and bibliography.

7. Study Duration and Reporting

A total of 21 calendar days will constitute the study period;

Number of days

Prepare relevant tools and review documentation – 3 days
Desk study of Vi Agroforestry governing documents and documentation referring the ATCs – 3 days
Interviewing relevant people from the past and the present. Skype to be used as much as possible – 5 days
Field visits to existing ATCs – 5 days
Complete the draft report – 2 days
Dissemination of results of draft report -1 day
Finalising report -1 day
Total 21

8. Profile of Consultant

The consultant should have the following qualifications/expertise:

  • Post graduate degree in Social science, economics, rural development, agriculture extension, adult and popular education or others as may be relevant (Essential)
  • 10 years’ experience of carrying out participatory and rights-based programme evaluations, studies, assessments and research (Essential)
  • 10 years’ experience and knowledge of sustainable agriculture, rural development and popular education and mobilisation. (Essential)
  • Solid experience of gender programming and mainstreaming (Essential)
  • Experience of the rights-based approach (HRBA)
  • Knowledge of Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda context (Essential)
  • Excellent writing, editing, attention to detail and organisational skills (Essential)
  • Fluency in English and Kiswahili. (Essential)

9. Study fees and modalities of remuneration

The consultant and Vi Agroforestry will agree on the remuneration rate per person/day. Charges related to taxes, mission allowances for fieldwork and secretarial fees are to be borne by the consultant. As part of this negotiation process, the consultant should propose the fees s/he wishes to charge noting that Vi Agroforestry will cover the transportation costs to and from the field assignments, and accommodation during the field work.

10. To Apply

Send Technical and Financial Offers addressed to  recruitment@viagroforestry.org and to be received not later than 26 June 2019.

The assignment is expected to commence around August 15th 2019.

The offer should contain:

  • A letter of interest addressed to the Regional Director
  • A Technical offer showing the interpretation of the ToR and indicating a detailed proposed methodology
  • A CV of the consultant or consultancy firm showing previous relevant experience
  • A detailed financial proposal (expressed in Kenyan Shillings indicating the cost required for the undertaking of the work required)

Submissions should include: ‘Review of agroforestry training centres’ in the subject box.

Contact person for the procurement: Peter Wachira, regional M&E Advisor