Final Evaluation of Project “Just and Sustainable Peace in Pakistan
Background NCA had been working in Pakistan with faith communities for promotion of toleranceand intra/interfaith dialogue since 2004. Through its thematic programme “Peacebuilding”, NCAstrengthened community structures for conflict transformation and support advocacy initiatives topromote dialogue process between key actors of different faiths for a joint social action to addressissues of intolerance, discrimination and violence. Under its peacebuilding programme, during2014-2017, NCA implemented project “Just and Sustainable Peace in Pakistan” in partnership withsix local NGOs in four districts (Gujranwala, Lahore, Faisalabad, Multan) of Punjab and threedistricts (Abbottabad, Kohat and Peshawar) of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces. Duration of thisongoing project was three years, i.e., April 2014 – March 2017. Purpose/ Objective The purpose of the evaluation was to assess the overall progress and level ofachievements made during the programme period with a special focus on: results achieved throughongoing project interventions; to the extent possible, assessing whether the project has had anypositive or negative impact, intended or unintended on policy level in public and private sectors andin communities; assessing the constraints faced and opportunities available for growth of the project; Assessing the possible revisions and adjustments required for the next phase of the project; andinclude a brief outline on the prospects of sustainability of the project. Methodology Methodology of the evaluation was based on DAC criteria of assessment againstrelevance, efficiency and effectiveness, risk management, anti-corruption measures and audit. Italso included the evaluation of financial and administrative processes of the partners. The evaluation team did desk review of documents (including project proposal, project annual reports,publications produced under the project, audit reports and observations of the financialmanagement systems), and conducted interviews and focus group discussions with the partners’management, project staff, beneficiaries and stakeholders. For this evaluation 88 people (34women and 54 men) out of which 71 were direct beneficiaries and 17 were the staff members weremet. Limitation of exercise was the unavailability of consolidated figures of three years (first twoyears’ figures were available) under various outputs, as the project activities were in wrap up phase. Key Findings The project design and implementation was relevant to the country context. It engaged all the right actors, i.e., FBOs and CSOs on issues of peace and justice in Pakistan. It tried to dent the legislative tier through lobbying on pro minority legislations and engaged religious scholars to produce publications on tolerance, peace, harmony, rights of women and role of State in safeguarding the rights of minorities’. The project used media (print and electronic including social media platforms) positively to promote peace and harmony in inter/intra faith groups. It positively intervened for conflict resolution in number of incidents like post Youhanabad church bombing and Kot Radha Kishan incident. In community level peace structures, it tried to engage youth, women, men and people from different faiths. However, there is a need for embedding other components in peacebuilding like work for provision of basic services and economic revitalization. The project applied accountability procedures through engagement of rights holders and dutybearers and both groups were found in coordination through community based peace structures. NCA performed two main roles, one is grant manager and the other is a facilitator/capacity builder, analysis found that it performed both roles efficiently. The capacity building and facilitating role of NCA had helped them to manage the project within agreed framework. Engagement of women in peacebuilding is a long process due to prevalent cultural norms and traditions that restrict their mobility. Though NCA made close follow ups with partners on women participation not only in trainings and events but also in CPGs. Yet, women participation is perceived as western agenda. Faith based organizations are not well acquainted with procedures of the institutional donors and INGOs, thus they need capacity building for organizational procedures policies and systems. Though NCA had put a lot of efforts to help building capacity, yet, they need a long term support. Recommendations To promote peace and justice in the society, there is a need for programme approach with components on service delivery, livelihood and institutionalization of the local peace structures. There is a need to develop partners’ capacity in sharing best practice models of conflict resolution, transformation and inter/intra faith harmony. It would help inspiring peace builders across the country to replicate models. There is a need to embed the tested approach after consolidating experiences from the current phase on engagement of right holders and duty bearers in the next intervention. There is a need to work more at the grassroots level. It would help engaging a critical mass to reduce religious-political extremism, misuse of religion and violation of human rights. There is a need to engage more women in interventions through thoroughly planned activities especially separate from the male beneficiaries, as it would help engaging more women and get cultural approval. There is a need to do more work on intra faith harmony both with in Muslim (all the five school of thoughts) and Christians (mushroom growth of Christian churches not aligned with the mainstream church) faith groups. There is a need to focus on partners’ capacity building in financial management through putting them on accounting software (especially DoR and field office PEAD although NCA offered accounting software to all partners but the mentioned ones are not using it), proper procurement procedures and compliance to the tax regime for enhanced transparency.