MEAL Support to Christian Aid Nigeria
In 2017, Christian Aid Nigeria decided to establish a new MEAL team, bringing together MEAL personnel that are usually based within thematic teams and across the country programme. Action Against Hunger UK MEAL Services was approached to support the process, while recruitment of a permanent MEAL Manager to head the new team is underway. The specific objectives of the project were to:
- Set up the new MEAL team, with revised communication and reporting lines.
- Support the recruitment process of a MEAL Manager, and hand over main outputs to her/him at the end of the assignment.
- Develop a MEAL strategy or Term of Reference, including systems and structures for learning and reflection and specific tools/templates/dashboards for capturing and consolidating learning from different programmes.
- Provide ad-hoc reporting support to the humanitarian programme, including data analysis and development of monitoring tools.
One team member conducted the work in-country, while two more supported the work around tools’ creation from the UK office. The work in-country involved interviewing the senior management team and MEAL staff in order to learn about existing structures and to explore further needs. Considering the diversity of thematic areas addressed by Christian Aid Nigeria (e.g. health, governance, gender, humanitarian relief), it was necessary to understand and consider different MEAL requirements, such as the most relevant methodologies and approaches for each. This included spending considerable time working with the humanitarian team in order to fully appreciate the scope of work, challenges and opportunities in relation to MEAL. Next, a MEAL team creation workshop was conducted in order to facilitate the thinking around the team’s vision, identity, priorities and ways of working. This was done in a highly participatory manner, allowing members to design the team in the way that felt most relevant and appropriate to them. Finally, a recruitment process for a permanent MEAL Manager was launched, supported by the individual in country, and a MEAL Manager was appointed.
- New MEAL team in place
- MEAL team strategy (basis for a long term strategy) and an Action Plan for 2018
- MEAL Manager recruited
- Donor reports completed
- Learning tools developed (country-level dashboard, learning calendar, etc.)
Author: Tamar Gabay, Katherine Dunlop, Brian McDonald