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Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

March 2011 Tbilisi, Georgia

Contents
Acronyms ..................................................................................................................................................... 1 Acknowledgments ...................................................................................................................................... 1 Executive Summary ................................................................................................................................... 2 NGOs Advocacy Strengths .................................................................................................................. 2 I. Introduction.......................................................................................................................................... 5 1. Assessing NGO Advocacy Capacities: Interviewing and Textual Analysis .............................. 5 2. Citizens Perceptions of and Participation in NGOs: Focus Groups .......................................... 7 3. Validity and Reliability ....................................................................................................................... 8 II. The Advocacy Capacity of Georgian NGOs................................................................................... 9 1. Descriptive Information about the NGO Cohort ............................................................................ 9 2. An Overview of NGOs AI Scores.................................................................................................. 11 3. NGOs Advocacy Strengths............................................................................................................ 12 4. Challenges to Successful Advocacy ............................................................................................. 13 5. Recommendations for Furthering NGOs Advocacy Capacity .................................................. 15 III. Citizens Perceptions and Participation in NGOs ................................................................... 19

1. Citizens Perceptions and Awareness of NGOs Advocacy Efforts .......................................... 19 2. Factors Encouraging and Discouraging Citizens Participation in NGO Activities ................. 23 ANNEX 1. Interview Guide ..................................................................................................................... 27 ANNEX 2. Scorecard ............................................................................................................................... 35 ANNEX 3. Sample letter to NGOs ......................................................................................................... 42 ANNEX 4. Research Statement and Oral Consent Form .................................................................. 43 ANNEX 5. Focus Group Guide .............................................................................................................. 45 ANNEX 6. Individual NGO Advocacy Capacity Assessment Reports ............................................. 46 ANNEX 7. List of NGOs Interviewed ..................................................................................................... 46 ANNEX 8. Transcripts of Focus Groups ............................................................................................... 46 ANNEX 9. NGO AI Scores ...................................................................................................................... 47

Acronyms
AI AYEG CSO EWMI G-PAC IDP NGO SME USAID Advocacy Index Association of Young Economists of Georgia Civil Society Organization East-West Management Institute, Inc. Policy, Advocacy, and Civil Society Development in Georgia (financed by USAID, Georgia and implemented by East-West Management Institute, Inc.) Internally Displaced Persons Non-governmental Organization Small and Medium Sized Enterprise United States Agency for International Development

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

Acknowledgments
This Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in Georgia was undertaken as part of the Policy, Advocacy, and Civil Society Development in Georgia (G-PAC), a project financed by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) under a cooperative agreement between USAID and the East-West Management Institute, Inc. (EWMI). The Association of Young Economists of Georgia (AYEG) conducted the research. Ana Katamidze (Head of the AYEG Board) led the research. Senior researchers included Temur Tsitsilashvili (Research Consultant) and Giorgi Tsimintia (Development Department Manager). Field research was conducted by Madona Kotia (Research Fellow), Ketevan Patsatsia (Program Officer), Ketevan Chitanava (Program Officer), Davit Merabishvili (Research Fellow), Mariam Nanitashvili (Program Officer), and Temur Tsitsilashvili. Nicole Farnsworth, an independent consultant contracted by EWMI, provided ongoing assistance with research design and the final report. AYEG staff members wish to express their gratitude for the support from the G-PAC project team and the NGO representatives who kindly participated in the research.

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

Executive Summary
This Advocacy Capacity Assessment of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in Georgia was carried out as part of Policy, Advocacy, and Civil Society Development in Georgia (G-PAC), a project financed by USAID under a cooperative agreement between USAID and the East-West Management Institute, Inc. (EWMI). The overall objective of the assessment was to provide a basis for the development of a demand-driven, tailored advocacy capacity development program for G-PAC. More specifically, the assessment aimed to: 1) Assess the capacity of Georgian NGOs to engage in effective advocacy efforts at the regional and national levels, using the USAID Advocacy Index (AI); 2) Identify a NGO AI score for individual advocacy NGOs and an overall score for advocacy NGOs in Georgia to serve as benchmark indicators for G-PAC; 3) Identify capacity development needs for advocacy NGOs; 4) Develop recommendations for advocacy NGOs capacity development needs; and 5) Examine citizens perceptions and awareness of NGOs advocacy efforts, as well as what encourages or discourages citizens from participating in NGOs advocacy efforts. The Association of Young Economists of Georgia (AYEG) carried out the assessment in February 2011. An independent consultant contracted by EWMI G-PAC provided ongoing capacity development assistance to AYEG for the research design, data analysis, and final report. She drew from her experience utilizing the USAID AI elsewhere in reviewing the validity and reliability of the findings. The assessment involved in-depth interviews with 100 NGOs regarding their advocacy experience; analysis of the texts they produced texts (i.e., reports, policy papers, newsletters); and 12 focus groups with diverse citizens in six regions. NGOs were assigned scores using the USAID AI. Scores on each of the aforementioned components are an average of an index of factors, each scored from one to five (where one is the lowest possible score). Summing the eight component scores produced an overall score for each NGO, ranging from eight to forty. The cohorts overall AI score is an average of individ ual NGO scores: 26.3 (out of 40). The following sections describe more specifically the research findings. NGOs Advocacy Strengths Advocacy Strengths are areas where NGOs scored relatively higher than on other indicators (e.g., 3.6 to 3.9). Considering that the maximum possible score was five, NGOs still have room for improvement in these areas as well. Advocacy strengths included: Identifying issues that are of vital concern to the groups constituents (3.9) Identifying relevant government agencies and their respective roles in the issue (3.9) Mapping at least some key stakeholders and their position on the issue (3.8) Soliciting general public input on the issue (3.7) Involving diverse media to produce quality coverage of the issue, towards raising public awareness and securing public support (3.6) Ensuring that at least a few key decision makers are receptive to the issue (3.6) Challenges to Successful Advocacy Challenges to successful advocacy included areas where the NGO cohort scored relatively lower (e.g., 3.3 and below). The following challenges were identified:
1

Interviews revealed that 11 NGOs were not involved in advocacy and could not be scored. The findings are therefore based on a sample of 89 advocacy NGOs.

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

Diversifying financial resources, particularly local resources (2.1) Developing comprehensive advocacy strategies (3.2): strategies rarely considered alternative strategies or contingency plans (2.8); involved consultations with diverse stakeholders (2.8); or identified ways to convince uncommitted/opposition groups to support their initiatives (3.2) Sustaining advocacy after the initial project (3) and monitoring public awareness for opportunities to renew advocacy when a desired policy was not passed (2.4) Monitoring and follow-up advocacy (2.8): NGOs rarely assigned human resources to monitoring policy implementation and/or its impact on beneficiaries after a policy decision was made and/or the initial campaign concluded (2.8) Analyzing policies relevant to their advocacy issue (3.1): NGOs, particularly those outside Tbilisi, sometimes failed to analyze policies or did not possess sufficient skills for analysis Drafting policies in writing, using various formats and levels of detail for different audiences (3); NGOs policy positions were not always appropriate for their target audiences, visually attractive, or effective (3.3). Regional NGOs were particularly weak in presenting their policy positions (2.9) Formulating a viable policy position on the issue (3.3): the cohort did not consistently involve key stakeholders in formulating policies (3.3); and their rationales were only sometimes coherent, persuasive, and/or evidence-based (3.3) Taking actions to influence policy or other aspects of the issue (3.3): NGOs only sometimes involved members/citizens in direct actions (3.3); and as a cohort NGOs seldom lobbied the government directly (3.3) Identifying international agencies with interests in the issue and securing support (3.3): Few NGOs secured financing from multiple donors for a single advocacy effort or involved international agents in advocating to the government Developing active and sustainable coalitions (3.4): NGOs tended to participate sometimes in coalitions and networks. However, evidence suggested that coalitions were established based on donor demands and were not particularly active, especially after project funding ended.

Advocacy Capacity Development Opportunities Assist NGOs to diversify funding: NGOs rely heavily on international donors. NGOs could benefit from workshops or mentoring towards diversifying their local resource base. Support comprehensive strategic planning for advocacy: NGOs could benefit from workshops and mentoring in drafting strategic plans for advocacy, including thorough stakeholder, situation, problem, and risk analyses, as well as developing alternative strategies and conducting monitoring and evaluation. Encourage NGOs to conduct post-campaign monitoring and follow-up actions: Tailored mentoring or workshops could impart monitoring and evaluation skills to NGOs, including resultsbased management techniques, project cycle management (including establishing indicators), and cost-efficient long-term monitoring. Through its grant applications, G-PAC can encourage NGOs to consider and plan for monitoring and follow-up actions. Coach NGOs in formulating viable policy positions and presenting them effectively: G-PAC could organize workshops on research design and policy analysis. Then, individualized mentoring could support NGOs in analyzing existing policies; drafting well-written policy papers; formulating policy positions; and presenting policy recommendations. Enhance NGOs access to information: G-PAC could support the development of a web-portal containing research reports, policy papers, and analyses. Perhaps G-PAC could encourage Ilia State University to enable NGO access to online academic journals. Improve data analysis techniques: Workshops could involve practical exercises through which NGOs could analyze data relevant to their ongoing advocacy initiatives.

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

Encourage NGOs to involve stakeholders in advocacy actions: Mentoring may help NGOs mobilize diverse stakeholders; learn strategies for overcoming citizen apathy; and identify mechanisms for involving citizens in public actions. Help NGOs identify and involve diverse international agencies in advocacy: G-PAC could organize a Meet the Donors program through which various donors c ould visit regions to present their strategic interests and funding priorities to NGOs. Then, mentoring may help NGOs identify new fundraising options and ways to involve international agents in advocacy. Encourage NGOs to utilize coalitions and networks: After mapping the existing coalitions, assessing their functioning, and identifying development needs, G-PAC could hold workshops through which NGOs might: 1) discuss prior experiences in coalitions and networks; 2) learn ways to utilize coalitions/networks towards more effective advocacy; 3) develop better systems for coordinating coalitions/networks; and 4) undertake coalition-building exercises on concrete issues. Enhance organizational and project cycle management: Mentoring could assist individual NGOs to develop internal management systems. Improve communications and PR: Regional NGOs in particular needed support in designing attractive public presentations and attracting diverse media coverage. Facilitate experience sharing between advanced and relatively weaker NGOs: more advanced NGOs could be involved in providing training and mentoring to relatively weaker NGOs, tailored to their specific needs and interests.

Citizen Perceptions and Factors Encouraging/Discouraging Participation in NGOs: Focus group participants vaguely understood the purpose of NGOs and knew even less about NGOs activities. They often confused NGOs with opposition political parties. When asked what motivated NGOs, citizens identified the government, financial interests, and/or donors. However, NGOs sometimes undertook initiatives that benefited people, they said. Television served as citizens main source of information about NGOs, though citizens tended not to trust the media and said that it rarely aired objective information about NGOs. Citizens hoped that NGOs would be a bridge between them and the government, pushing the government to address issues such as unemployment, rising living costs, healthcare, and education. Insufficient information about NGOs, distrust, concern over political manipulation, busy schedules, nihilism, and disbelief that NGOs have the ability to instigate change discouraged citizens from becoming engaged in NGO activities. Better information-sharing about NGO activities, evidence of a positive track record, and establishing trust could encourage citizens to become more involved in NGOs.

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

I.

Introduction

The overall objective of the Advocacy Capacity Assessment of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in Georgia was to provide a basis for the development of a demand-driven, tailored advocacy capacity development program for G-PAC. More specifically, the NGO Advocacy Capacity Assessment aimed to: 1) Assess the capacity of Georgian NGOs in Tbilisi and the regions to engage in effective advocacy efforts at the regional and national levels, using the USAID Advocacy Index (AI); 2) Identify a NGO AI score for individual advocacy NGOs and an overall score for advocacy NGOs in Georgia (scores will serve as benchmark indicators for later assessing the effectiveness of GPAC advocacy capacity development activities); 3) Identify capacity development needs for advocacy NGOs; 4) Develop recommendations for strategies and activities to address the capacity development needs of advocacy NGOs; and 5) Examine citizens perceptions and awareness of NGOs advocacy efforts, as well as what encourages or discourages citizens from participating in NGOs advocacy efforts. For the purpose of this research, advocacy NGOs was operationalized as registered, functioning NGOs 2 involved in advocacy. Advocacy was defined broadly, as an active process through which citizens seek to influence political and social change. Drawing from the USAID AI, effective advocacy often includes various steps: ensuring the issue is timely; devising an effective advocacy strategy; collecting information about the issue; formulating a viable policy position; securing sufficient resources; building partnerships; taking action; and monitoring policy changes to ensure that they are implemented well. NGOs involved in any or all of these advocacy components were potential assessment respondents. The assessment occurred in February 2011 and involved three methods: 1) semi-structured in-depth interviews with 100 NGOs; 2) analysis of texts produced by NGOs (e.g., policy papers, research reports, and public relations materials) and 3) twelve focus groups with diverse citizens. The following sections discuss each method in further detail. This report includes three chapters. This first chapter details the methodology. The second chapter examines the advocacy capacity of NGOs. It describes the cohort of NGOs; examines their advocacy strengths; explores challenges to successful advocacy; and offers recommendations for their capacity development. The third chapter summarizes insights gleaned from the focus groups with citizens. 1. Assessing NGO Advocacy Capacities: Interviewing and Textual Analysis Considering the research objectives, selecting a random sample of Georgias NGO population (totaling 3 more than 5,000 registered NGOs ) would not provide the detailed data required. Randomly selecting NGOs from the official registration list would likely produce NGOs that either no longer existed or that 4 were not involved in advocacy. Such NGOs are not primary targets for G-PAC grants or capacity

Since only registered NGOs involved in advocacy will qualify for G-PACs capacity-building program, they were the focus of this assessment. Further, assessing the advocacy capacity of NGOs not involved in advocacy would be of little use when using the USAID AI. 3 See the public registry at www.napr.gov.ge. 4 Evidence suggests that many registered NGOs are no longer operating, but have not been deregistered. Further, random sampling in small-N research such as this is inadvisable because it can easily fail to capture the full range of variation on the variables of interest, as King et al. warn (King, G., Keohane, & Verba, Designing Social Inquiry,

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

development. In the absence of a sampling frame inclusive of all NGOs involved in advocacy, AYEG compiled its own database of advocacy-oriented NGOs, drawing from NGO databases held by AYEG, 5 partner NGOs, and various donors. The database was circulated among journalists, including the Association of Regional Broadcasters of Georgia, and NGOs at the regional level to identify additional active NGOs. Finally, 100 NGOs (or cases) that maximized variation relevant to the research were selected: Georgian advocacy NGOs and NGO networks that are more likely to lead advocacy initiatives at the regional and country-wide levels and, as such, also become main beneficiaries of G-PAC grant and 6 7 capacity development assistance. Here, variation sampling involved selecting diverse NGOs by geographic location, their main area of engagement, gender (e.g., women- or men-led), age (in terms of 8 focus and leadership), and ethnicity. More developed NGOs involved specifically in advocacy work were of intrinsic interest in that G-PAC will target them, and as such were selected for study. Due to the sampling strategy employed, the cohort studied is not representative of all Georgian NGOs. However, moderate, probabilistic generalizations can be made based on the following logic: if the advocacy capacity development needs of diverse NGOs (e.g., youth/elderly; women/men; Georgian/Azeri/ Armenian, and rural/urban) prove similar, the population of NGOs involved in advocacy probably has 9 similar needs. Interviews later revealed that 11 NGOs were not involved in advocacy and could not be scored. The findings are therefore based on a sample of 89 advocacy NGOs. Multiple observations were collected for each NGO (or case). NGOs were asked to detail multiple 10 examples from various prior advocacy campaigns to illustrate each factor considered in the USAID AI. The scoring system acknowledges that observations can correspond or compete. For example, if an NGO consulted with stakeholders to plan one advocacy initiative, but did not consult them on other initiatives, the score would be lower than if stakeholders helped plan most or every initiative. The interview guide was based on the USAID AI and involved eight advocacy components: 1) 2) 3) 4) 5) 6) The issue is timely and significant; 11 Devising a strategy or action plan for an advocacy initiative; Collecting information and input about the issue; Formulating a viable policy position on the issue; Obtaining and/or allocating resources (especially time and money) for advocacy; Building coalitions and networks to obtain cooperative efforts for joint action on the issue;

1994, cited in Collier, D., Seawright, J., & Munck, G. L., The Quest for Standards: King, Keohane, and Verbas Designing Social Inquiry, Rethinking Social Inquiry, 2004). 5 AYEG partners databases included: the Association of Disabled Women and Mothers of Disabled Children Dea and Gori Rural Development Center (GRDC). Donors databases included USAID/EWMI/G-PAC, the Eurasia Partnership Foundation, Open Society Institute, Oxfam Novib, Oxfam Great Britain, Dutch Embassy, and Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC). 6 G-PAC, Request for Proposals, November 2010. 7 This is also known as theoretical or purposive sampling. For more information, see King et al., Designing Social Inquiry, 1994. 8 Although the Statement of Work also referred to size, this was impossible to determine in the initial sampling phase due to an incomplete sampling frame. 9 As Payne and Williams note, small-N samples can result in moderatum generalizations that are moderate in both their claims (probabilistic rather than deterministic) and in their acknowledgement of the dynamic, shifting situation (Generalization in qualitative research Sociology, 2005, 39, 2:295-314). 10 Here the issue of NGOs self-sampling examples from more successful advocacy initiatives existed. Researchers sought to minimize this selection bias by proactively asking NGOs abo ut different advocacy campaigns and drawing from information on their websites. 11 EWMI added this component to the USAID AI as they considered strategic planning for advocacy crucial.

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

7) Taking actions to influence policy or other aspects of the issue; 8) Taking follow-up actions after a policy decision is made, to foster implementation and/or to maintain public interest. The interview guide was reviewed multiple times and tested towards enhancing the validity of the indicators (see Annex 1). The procedures were reliable to the extent that similar procedures have been used elsewhere and can be replicated in Georgia. For this purpose, a USAID AI Score Card and database were developed (see Annex 2). Each component score is an average of an index of factors, each scored from one to five (where one is the lowest possible score). The sum of the eight component scores makes up the overall score for a single NGO, ranging from eight to forty. The cohorts overall AI score is an average of individual NGO scores. When recruiting respondents, information about the research was given orally and an official letter requesting interviews (developed by EWMI) was sent to potential respondent organizations (See Annex 3). Prior to interviews, researchers used the Internet to collect information about NGO respondents advocacy experience. This preliminary research informed the interviews. Two researchers attended each interview. Researchers began interviews by explaining the purpose of the research and requesting respondents oral consent to participate (see Annex 4). A lead interviewer facilitated the interview while taking brief notes. A second interviewer took detailed notes and asked additional questions, if needed. Immediately following the interview, each researcher independently scored the NGO, using the AI Score Card. Relevant documents collected during interviews and NGOs websites were also used in scoring. These were analyzed in accordance with the USAID AI. To enhance validity, the researchers then discussed scores together. Based on the evidence collected, researchers agreed on scores for each factor. AI scores and the relevant evidence were entered into the AI database (see Annex 10). An external reviewer with experience using the AI elsewhere reviewed the evidence and scoring, again towards enhanced validity. Background data about NGOs was entered into a separate database. Researchers then drafted individual reports for each NGO, including an introduction, advocacy strengths, and capacity development opportunities. Microsoft Excel was used to facilitate cross-case analysis. The analysis focused on priority capacity development needs (dually NGOs lowest AI scores), as per the research objectives. 2. Citizens Perceptions of and Participation in NGOs: Focus Groups Focus groups were used to examine: 1) citizens perceptions and awareness of NGOs advocacy efforts and 2) what encourages or discourages citizens from participating in NGOs advocacy efforts. Focus groups are useful for learning more about a populations perceptions and experiences. However, a limitation of this method is that findings cannot represent the views of the entire population. Again, variation sampling sought to collect a range of perceptions and opinions suggestive of probabilistic trends. The same logic applied: if diverse people have similar views, evidence suggests that such views may exist within the broader population. Twelve focus groups were conducted in the following six regions, with two meetings in each region on the respective topics: 1) Tbilisi, the capital, where people hypothetically may have the greatest opportunity to participate in an advocacy-oriented initiative;

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

2) 3) 4) 5) 6)

Kvemo Kartli, where a large proportion of Georgias Azeri ethnic minority is located; Samtskhe-Javakheti, where the majority of Georgias Armenian ethnic minority is located; Adjara, a region which possesses a relatively strong economy; Imereti, which is also relatively economically strong; and Shida Kartli, a region where numerous NGOs have been operating due to the large population of internally displaced persons (IDPs).

Variation sampling involved selecting six to ten diverse individuals who were unknown to each other. Respondents were recruited from the streets considering the following criteria: age; gender; employment status; habitat (rural/urban); and prior NGO participation/non-participation. Focus groups lasted between one and a half and two hours. A moderator led the focus groups, using a guide developed specifically for this purpose (see Annex 5). Pending participants agreement focus groups were recorded. The resulting transcripts were coded by two researchers and analyzed for trends, as per the research objectives. 3. Validity and Reliability A number of steps were taken towards enhancing validity and reliability: External reviewers/controllers from G-PAC (Nicole Farnsworth, consultant, and Tamuna Karosanidze, G-PAC Deputy Chief of Party) attended some interviews and focus groups to monitor quality; An external reviewer (Nicole Farnsworth) examined the extent to which the AI scores assigned corresponded with the evidence provided; Triangulation of methods: interviewing, textual analysis, and focus groups; Triangulation of data sources: diverse NGOs, various NGO texts, and citizens; Triangulation of researchers: two interviewers discussed observations for scoring; Similarly, two researchers coded transcripts resulting from focus groups; Triangulation coupled with reflexivity, in which researchers struggled with themselves and their colleagues to identify and understand any inconsistencies in the data; The researchers knowledge of the context: familiarity with the NGOs, their work, and prior media coverage; and Thick description: details of the multiple observations collected were entered into a database as evidence or exist as transcripts from focus groups.

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

II.

The Advocacy Capacity of Georgian NGOs

This chapter examines the advocacy capacity of NGOs in Georgia. It first describes the cohort of NGOs involved in the research. Second, it provides an overview of cohort scores on the Advocacy Index (AI). Third, examines NGOs advocacy strengths. Fourth, it discusses challenges to successful advocacy. Fifth, the chapter offers recommendations for furthering NGOs advocacy capacity. 1. Descriptive Information about the NGO Cohort Of the 100 NGOs interviewed, 45 percent were Tbilisi-based and 55 percent were located in various regions (see Table 1). On average, NGOs had nine years advocacy experience. Fifty-four percent were led by women and 46 percent by men. Interethnic staffs, including Armenians and Azeris, managed six NGOs while the other NGOs were Georgian-led.
Table 1. Regional Distribution of Interviewed Advocacy NGOs Region Tbilisi Adjara Guria Imereti Kakheti Kvemo Kartli Racha Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti Samtskhe-Javakheti Shida Kartli # 45 7 7 7 5 7 1 10 4 7

Most organizations (68) said that they were membership-based independent NGOs (see Table 2). This may be attributed to the fact that before the revision of the Civil Code in 2006, NGOs could register as either foundations or membership-based unions, and many chose the latter. However, experience suggests that membership-based NGOs tend to have few members and/or seldom involve members Total 100 12 actively in their work. Thirteen NGO respondents were nonmembership-based independent NGOs, and 11 were branches of Georgian NGOs. Only three NGOs were coalitions or networks. Three were funds and two were branches of foreign NGOs.
Table 2. NGO Types (according to respondents) Type of Organization

NGOs mentioned 22 different issues on which they worked (see Chart 1 on the next page). The most Branch of Foreign NGO 2 common focus areas included education (50 13 Branch of Georgian NGO 11 NGOs), human rights (42), local/state government Coalition/Network 3 (27), rule of law (27), democracy building (21), Fund 3 economy and business climate (20), youth (15), Independent NGO (membership-based) 68 ethnic minorities (15), health (14), and media (13). Independent NGO (not membership-based) 13 Other focus areas included civil society development (12 NGOs), IDPs (12), gender equality / women rights (12), persons with disabilities / special needs (12), and social affairs (10), among others. Some organizations focused on one or two issues, while others claimed to have more than 10 focus areas.
#

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Unfortunately, NGOs membership was not studied here. The Law did not specify how many members NGOs had to have, so it is quite likely that many membership-based NGOs have as few as 5-10 members. 13 Here, Education related to both the education sector and the education of citizens.

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

On average, NGOs said that they employed 10 full-time staff members; 56 percent had part-time 14 personnel (six staff on average). Sixty-two percent claimed to have at least one volunteer. Many regional organizations had international volunteers (e.g., from the Peace Corps) and larger organizations stated that they periodically involved 10 to 20 volunteers in advocacy initiatives. Evidence suggested that NGOs tended to involve volunteers on more of an ad-hoc than systematic basis. When asked about their key beneficiaries, most NGOs identified citizens in general (44), young people (35), state agencies (33), vulnerable groups (23), and IDPs (23) (see Chart 2). NGOs also mentioned children (21 NGOs), women (20), media or journalists (18), minorities (10), persons with disabilities (9), small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) (7), CSOs (6), and farmers (4). Notably, all of the NGOs that indicated that they worked to help citizens in general seemed to have at least one specific target group as well. Most NGOs said that their work benefited three to four beneficiary groups simultaneously. A few organizations
14

However, this number seems high. Unfortunately, researchers did not have any way of checking the information provided by NGOs.

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

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purportedly targeted up to nine groups at once. NGOs lack of clarity regarding key beneficiaries could affect the extent to which they carry out effective advocacy initiatives. NGOs named 97 different donors from which they had received funds since 2007. The donors that seemed to have supported the most advocacy NGOs included the Eurasia Partnership Foundation (EPF) (33 NGOs), Open Society Georgia Foundation (32), USAID (26), European Union (23), U.S. Embassy (13), European Commission (11), and World Bank (10) (see Table 3). Fifty-two different donors were named only once. While NGOs funding sources may appear diverse, NGOs tended to rely primarily on the aforementioned 10 main donors. Table 3. Donors Funding at Least Eight NGOs
Donor Eurasia Partnership Foundation Open Society Georgia Foundation USAID European Union U.S. Embassy European Commission World Bank United Nations Development Program Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs Oxfam Novib Dutch Embassy # of NGOs financed 33 32 26 23 13 11 10 9 9 8 8

In total, NGOs listed 56 topics in which they had received training. Trainings attended by the most advocacy NGOs included organizational management (33 NGOs), project management (29), advocacy tools (25), fundraising (14), communications or public relations (14), strategic planning (11), and project writing (9) (see Chart 3). Areas in which the most NGOs expressed interest in further training included fundraising (28 NGOs), advocacy tools (25), organizational management (22), communications and public relations (21), project management (20), project writing (16), and human resource management (12).

2. An Overview of NGOs AI Scores Overall, the cohorts average score was 26.3 (out of 40). With regard to the individual components of the AI (see Chart 4), on average NGOs were relatively stronger at identifying a timely and significant issue (3.7) and collecting information and input about the issue (3.5). They were comparatively weaker at taking follow up actions to implement and/or maintain public interests (2.8); obtaining and/or allocating resources for advocacy (3.1); and devising strategies/actions plans for advocacy. The following sections take a closer look at the indicators within these components. Overall, the cohort scored close to average (3) on most components, as would be expected based on experience employing the AI elsewhere. Clearly

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

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differences existed within the cohort, and regional NGOs in particular tended to have lower scores than Tbilisi-based NGOs.
Chart 4. NGOs' Average AI Score by Components
1. Issue is timely and significant 2. CSO devises strategy/action plan for its advocacy initiative 3. CSO collects information and input about the issue 4. CSO formulates a viable policy position on the issue 5. CSO obtains and/or allocates resources for advocacy 6. CSO builds coalitions and networks for joint action 7. CSO takes actions to influence policy/other aspects of the issue 8. CSO takes follow up actions to foster implementation and/or maintain public interest 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 2.5 2.8 3 3.5 4 3.1 3.4 3.3 3.3 3.2 3.5 3.7

3. NGOs Advocacy Strengths Advocacy Strengths are areas where NGOs scored relatively higher than on other indicators (e.g., scores of 3.6 to 3.9). However, considering that the maximum score is five, NGOs still have room for improvement in these areas as well. Overall, NGOs advocacy strengths included: Identifying issues that are of vital concern to the groups constituents (3.9): NGOs determined beneficiaries needs using evidence obtained via research, review of secondary data, public meetings, and consultations with target groups. For example, 25 NGOs had carried out needs 15 assessments to inform their advocacy campaigns. Their key sources included statistical data, various reports, human stories, meetings with different clients, and papers produced as part of other advocacy initiatives. NGOs focusing on specific issues (e.g., gender, youth, environment) tended to possess more data about beneficiaries needs. Identifying relevant government agencies and their respective roles in the issue at national and local levels (3.9): Many NGOs had established connections with government agencies and understood the relevant agencies' knowledge and/or positions on the issue. They usually identified the positions of state officials via personal meetings, analyses of official speeches, and participation in conferences and/or committee meetings. Tbilisi-based NGOs tended to have better access to central government representatives than organizations located outside Tbilisi. Mapping at least some key stakeholders and their positions on the issue (3.8) as part of advocacy strategies. Soliciting general public input on the issue (3.7): NGOs tended to collect at least some general public input via public meetings, focus groups, debates, and observation through field visits. In some

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NGOs did not always specify what they meant by needs assessments. Probing by researchers suggested that disparity existed between Tbilisi-based NGOs and regional NGOs: Tbilisi-based NGOs were able to conduct surveys in accordance with respected research standards, but many regional NGOs did not abide by such standards.

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

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instances, the method(s) employed for collecting input could have been more appropriate or input more diverse. For example, some NGOs surveyed citizens, but their samples were unrepresentative. Regional NGOs in particular tended to be less familiar with research design and respected research standards. Some NGOs ensured input from diverse citizens, including women and minorities. Involving diverse media to produce quality coverage of the issue, towards raising public awareness and securing public support (3.6): Tbilisi-based NGOs cooperated primarily with national-level media, whereas regional NGOs tended to have close relations with local media and very limited relations with national media. NGOs had additional communication tools: publishing their own newspapers, magazines, or leaflets; launching Facebook pages; and disseminating enewsletters. Some NGOs trained journalists about particular advocacy issues. Ensuring that at least a few key decision-makers are receptive to the issue (3.6): NGOs tended to ensure that at least a few key decision-makers were receptive to their advocacy initiative. Tbilisibased NGOs working primarily on legislative initiatives tended to have assigned staff members who sought to secure MPs support. Regional NGOs struggled to reach decision-makers at the central level, however. Despite some NGOs ad hoc efforts, few NGOs seemed to have a systematic approach to securing decision-makers support. Receptiveness seemed to result from long-term communication and/or personal contacts.

4. Challenges to Successful Advocacy Those areas where the NGO cohort scored relatively lower (e.g., 3.3 and below) can be considered challenges to successful advocacy. The following key challenges were identified: Diversifying financial resources, particularly local resources (2.1): Almost all of the NGOs depended almost exclusively on foreign donor funding for their advocacy campaigns. Only business 16 associations had accumulated significant financial resources from their members. Approximately ten NGOs had secured contributions from private companies for particular advocacy campaigns. Up to 30 NGOs had collected some resources by offering services like trainings, research, and consultations. However, such non-grant income represented only 10 to 20 percent of their annual budgets and was not used solely for advocacy. Diversifying their local resource base could enable NGOs to sustain their advocacy efforts beyond international donor-funded projects and to secure greater ownership from local stakeholders. Developing a comprehensive advocacy strategy (3.2): NGOs tended to have advocacy action plans so long as their initiatives were part of donor-funded projects. When NGOs implemented advocacy initiatives without donor funding, written strategies or action plans were uncommon. Written strategies rarely considered alternative strategies or contingency plans in case their initial strategies faced obstacles (2.8). On average, NGOs consulted with a few stakeholders to compile their strategy, rather than consulting extensively with diverse stakeholders (2.8). Further, on average, NGOs rarely considered within their strategy ways to convince uncommitted or opposition groups to support their initiatives (3.2). Instead, they usually preferred to work with stakeholders who already supported them. Even though up to 50 percent of the cohort declared that they had received various trainings in planning and management, few used such skills and knowledge in practice.

16

For example, for some NGOs, companies paid annual membership fees averaging $1,000.

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

13

Maintaining advocacy (3) and monitoring public awareness for opportunities to renew advocacy when a desired policy is not passed (2.4): When a desired policy was not passed, some NGOs maintain minimal, ad-hoc advocacy. Most waited for time to pass or the climate to change before renewing advocacy efforts. NGOs tended to repeat prior advocacy actions rather than considering or employing alternative strategies. Similarly, very few (if any) NGOs monitored public awareness and interest to identify opportunities for renewing pressure on an issue. Rather, NGOs tended to believe that success on certain issues depended completely on political will and the existing situation; they had minimal influence in changing the status quo, they said. Taking follow-up advocacy actions (2.8): NGOs rarely assigned staff or volunteer time to monitoring after a policy decision was made and/or the initial advocacy campaign concluded (2.8). Only ten NGOs reported carrying out systematic, post-campaign monitoring (3.1). Some NGO leaders said that they would like to conduct monitoring, but usually projects funded by international agencies did not enable such actions. Analyzing policies relevant to their issue (3.1): Only 25 NGOs analyzed multiple policies relevant to their advocacy issue. Almost all of them were either Tbilisi-based, or branch offices of NGOs at the national level. Other organizations sometimes failed to analyze relevant policies appropriately and/or did not have sufficient skills for analysis. This potentially negatively affected their ability to carry out effective advocacy campaigns or to make viable policy recommendations. Drafting policies in writing, using various formats and levels of detail (3): 22 NGOs usually produced two or more formats and versions of their policy documents. They tended to prepare one version for decision-makers and experts and another for the public. However, most NGOs had only one written version, which was not always appropriate. Nor did NGOs regularly present their policy positions in attractive and effective formats (3.3). Regional NGOs were particularly weak in presenting visually their policy positions (2.9) compared to those in Tbilisi (3.8). Most Tbilisi-based NGOs tended to use graphs, illustrations, and photos. Formulating a viable policy position on the issue (3.3): Only 34 percent of the cohort usually involved some stakeholders in formulating their policy position in a participatory manner (3.3). In general, the cohort only sometimes involved stakeholders and/or failed to include key stakeholders. Policy positions were not always gender sensitive. NGOs tended to involve direct beneficiaries, rather than decision-makers in drafting policy positions. Only four NGOs had introduced draft policy positions to key decision-makers prior to publishing. Further, NGOs rationales for their policy positions were only sometimes coherent, persuasive, and/or evidence-based (3.3). Regional NGOs in particular struggled to present a coherent rationale. NGOs policy analyses tended to be poorly communicated to wider audiences or inclusive of too much irrelevant data. Drafting legislation (3.1): Overall, 22 NGOs had drafted legislation. Indeed, drafting legislation is not necessarily within the mandate or capacities of all NGOs. NGOs at the national level drafted legislation more often than those at the municipal level. Regional-based NGOs sometimes contributed by drafting policy analyses and recommendations. Taking actions to influence policy or other aspects of the issue (3.3): NGOs only sometimes involved members or citizens in direct actions (3.3), such as street actions, marathons, initiative groups, and community mobilizing. NGOs working nationwide often lobbied for their policy position (3.3), whereas other NGOs lobbied relatively rarely. Sometimes beneficiaries and stakeholders were involved, sharing stories and information.

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

14

Identifying international agencies with interests in the issue and securing support (3.3): NGOs tended to identify and apply for support from one or two international agencies interested in their advocacy issue. Few NGOs ever secured financing from multiple donors for a single advocacy effort. Tbilisi-based NGOs were more able to secure financing from donors than regional NGOs. Developing active and sustainable coalitions (3.4): NGOs tended to participate sometimes in coalitions and networks. However, evidence suggested that coalitions were established based on donor demands and were not particularly active, especially after project funding ended.

5. Recommendations for Furthering NGOs Advocacy Capacity Drawing from the aforementioned challenges to successful advocacy, best practices identified in the USAID AI, and the aforementioned training needs identified by NGOs, G-PAC might consider the following interventions towards furthering NGOs advocacy capacity: Assist NGOs to diversify their funding: Georgian NGOs tend to rely heavily on donor funds. NGOs could benefit from workshops or individualized mentoring on how to diversify their funding base. In particular, there is potential for improving cooperation between NGOs and socially responsible businesses. Roundtables with participants from different sectors could facilitate communication and identification of common interests. NGOs members could serve as another untapped resource. While most NGOs claimed to be membership-based organizations, few collected membership dues. Workshops or mentoring towards creating membership services plans; offering services or programs that meet members needs; and recruiting new members could help NGOs build their membership base and secure broader ownership of and support for their advocacy initiatives. Workshops on identifying donors, drafting project proposals, and project cycle management could be particularly useful for regional organizations. They could also benefit from mentoring in 1) fundraising from the general public or specific interest groups for concrete initiatives (i.e., targeted fundraising); and 2) carrying out income generation activities (i.e. services, training, research). Support comprehensive strategic planning for advocacy: Few NGOs developed strategic advocacy plans that consider diverse stakeholders interests (including opponents), alternative strategies, and monitoring or follow-up actions. Promoting the importance of detailed planning for effective advocacy, regardless of donors request, is crucial. NGOs could benefit from workshops and individualized mentoring in drafting advocacy strategies, including conducting thorough stakeholder analyses, situation analyses, problem analyses, risk analyses, and monitoring and evaluation. This could be paired with G-PAC grants via pilot advocacy campaigns, where consultants could assist NGOs in designing effective advocacy initiatives and then be available for consultation during implementation and post-campaign monitoring. Encourage NGOs to conduct post-campaign monitoring and follow-up actions: NGO respondents rarely engaged in follow-up actions when their desired policy was not passed or in monitoring the mid- to long-term impact of their advocacy initiatives on beneficiaries. Tailored mentoring or workshops could impart monitoring and evaluation skills to NGOs, including resultsbased management techniques, project cycle management (including establishing indicators), and cost-efficient long-term monitoring. This could be part of coaching provided to NGOs during the suggested pilot advocacy campaigns. G-PAC could also take the lead in supporting, as well as encouraging other donors to support NGOs follow-up projects that monitor the results of prior advocacy initiatives, how policy changes impact stakeholders over time, and the extent to which

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

15

approved policies are implemented. Through its grant applications, G-PAC can encourage NGOs to consider and plan for monitoring and follow-up actions. Coach NGOs in formulating viable policy positions and presenting them effectively: NGOs tended to have a relatively poor understanding of how to conduct comprehensive policy analyses and draft effective policy recommendations. First, towards improving NGOs research and analytical skills, G-PAC could organize workshops on research design and policy analysis. Then, individualized mentoring could support NGOs in analyzing existing policies; drafting well-written, evidence-based policy papers; formulating policy positions; and presenting concrete policy recommendations in visually appealing formats tailored to diverse audiences. This learning-by-doing approach could include mentors reviewing NGOs draft papers and providing recommendations for improvement. Regional NGOs in particular could benefit from such hands-on mentoring. Enhance NGOs access to information: NGOs, particularly those located in regions, lacked access to existing research, policy papers, and analytical reports that could inform their policy papers. G-PAC could support the development of a web-portal with local and international research reports, resources, policy papers, and analyses relevant to Georgia. Perhaps G-PAC could encourage Ilia State University to create a sustainable program through which NGOs could sign up for free or subsidized access to academic journals online (e.g., LexisNexis, JSTOR, EBSCOhost) This could facilitate NGOs access to lessons learned internationally. Improve data analysis techniques: Many NGOs collected useful information and conducted solid research, but then struggled to analyze the data. This hampered their ability to present solid evidence for their advocacy initiatives. A series of workshops on data analysis could target NGOs at different levels. Workshops could involve practical exercises through which NGOs could analyze already collected data relevant to their ongoing advocacy initiatives. Encourage NGOs to involve stakeholders in advocacy actions: In general, NGOs do not involve their members, citizens, or other stakeholders effectively in advocacy campaigns. Mentoring may help NGOs identify which groups could participate in direct actions; how to mobilize diverse stakeholder support; strategies for overcoming citizen apathy; and concrete techniques for involving citizens in public actions (e.g., letter writing, petitioning, and new information communication technologies like Facebook). Help NGOs identify and involve diverse international agencies in their advocacy campaigns : Training in fundraising was requested by the most NGOs (28). Regional NGOs in particular lack knowledge about which international agencies may support their advocacy efforts. First, G-PAC could develop a donor matrix with information about donors and their funding priorities, which could be shared with NGOs. Then, perhaps G-PAC could organize a Meet the Donors program through which various donors could visit regions to present their strategic interests and funding priorities to NGOs. At the same time, NGOs could share information about their work and initiatives, towards identifying areas of common interest. Then, as NGOs generally know basic theories of fundraising but struggle to transfer these into practice, follow-up mentoring may help individual NGOs identify new, tailored fundraising options. Here, NGOs could also learn non-financial ways to involve international stakeholders, such as in advocating to the government. Finally, G-PAC could encourage NGOs to consider how involving diverse international (and national) stakeholders might support their advocacy efforts via questions on its grants application.

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

16

Encourage NGOs to utilize coalitions and networks: While numerous coalitions exist in Georgia, few NGOs seem to participate actively in coalitions. Many coalitions appear to be donor-driven, falling apart when funding ends. An important first step towards strengthening coalitions could be mapping the existing coalitions and networks, assessing their functioning, and identifying development needs. Then, G-PAC could hold workshops through which NGOs could: 1) discuss lessons learned from their prior experiences in coalitions and networks (participants can identify and study challenges and successes); 2) learn ways to utilize coalitions and networks towards more effective advocacy; 3) develop better systems for cooperation and coordination in existing coalitions and networks; and 4) undertake coalition-building exercises (simulations) on specific advocacy issues. Develop advocacy tools: This was the second most requested training (identified by 25 NGOs). Here, NGOs interests included utilizing modern media tools for advocacy; building relationships with key decision-makers; and attracting and involving diverse stakeholders in their advocacy efforts. Mentoring could follow training, linking theory with concrete practices, relevant to NGOs ongoing advocacy campaigns. Experience-sharing workshops may enable NGOs to exchange best practices and gain new knowledge and skills. Enhance organizational management: Although 33 organizations had attended training in NGO 17 management, 22 NGOs requested such training. In addition to group training, mentoring could assist individual NGOs to develop internal management systems adjusted to their specific needs. Mentors could follow-up, monitoring how newly established systems functioned and offering additional assistance, as needed. Improved internal management could make NGOs advocacy efforts more effective and efficient. Improve project cycle management: Related, although 29 NGOs had attended training on project management, 20 NGOs requested such training. More specifically, NGOs requested training towards solving concrete challenges within the Georgian context and improving efficiency. Again, training followed by mentoring might address NGOs individual needs, as well as the gap between what NGOs have learned in theory and what they do in practice. Improve communication and PR: While 14 NGOs had attended public relations (PR) training, 21 requested such training. Evidence suggested that regional NGOs in particular needed support in designing attractive presentations and establishing relationships with diverse media outlets. Even for 18 NGOs that ensured media coverage, room exists for improving quality and quantity. G-PAC could develop a series of workshops to further NGOs communication skills. Media representatives could participate in some workshops, sharing tips on how NGOs could secure better coverage or make their issues hot. Such workshops could also foster better relations between media and NGOs. Facilitate experience sharing between advanced and relatively weaker NGOs: Linking experienced NGOs with newer NGOs, circulating Georgian advocacy success stories, and arranging experience-sharing discussions may support nascent NGOs and facilitate advocacy-oriented cooperation among NGOs. Experienced NGOs with similar focus areas could meet with less experienced regional NGOs to discuss techniques and identify opportunities for cooperation. NGO leaders were particularly interested in discussions surrounding the Georgian Context where challenging and successful cases of advocacy could be presented and discussed.

17 18

For example, in Guria, organizations faced serious human resource availability issues. This was particularly clear considering citizens lack of knowledge regarding NGOs (see the next chapter).

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

17

Overall, NGOs leaders hoped that advocacy capacity development opportunities offered by G-PAC would be both practical and participatory. For a summary of the proposed capacity development options, see Table 4. Table 4. Summary of Proposed Capacity Development Interventions
Capacity Development Issue Advocacy tools (different advocacy stages) Project cycle management Data analysis Communication and PR Fundraising and diversifying resources Advocacy strategic planning Post-campaign monitoring and follow-up actions Policy formulation and presentation Access to information Involving stakeholders & international agencies in advocacy campaigns Coalition building Organizational management Experience sharing Training/ Workshop X X X X X Recommended Methods Mentoring Other X X X X X X X Experience-sharing workshops

Workshops with different target groups to support networking Meet the Donors Program

Web-portal; working with universities X X X X

X Experience sharing sessions

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

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III.

Citizens Perceptions and Participation in NGOs

Twelve focus groups conducted in February 2011 examined: 1) citizens perceptions and awareness of NGOs advocacy efforts; and 2) what encourages or discourages citizens from participating in NGO s advocacy efforts. The following two sections address each of the research questions, respectively. 1. Citizens Perceptions and Awareness of NGOs Advocacy Efforts Participants in the focus groups on Citizens perceptions and awareness of NGOs advocacy efforts tended to be unfamiliar with NGOs, their activities, and purpose. The following comments illustrate recurring themes: People are not well informed about NGOs. In my opinion, only one percent of the rural population knows what NGOs are. I know NGOs like World Vision because Ive seen their car driving around the city. USAID is an NGO! [Another participant commented: No, it is something international.] We know the opposition [parties and politicians]; we know the position [of the government], but we dont know the NGOs. A recurring trend among participants was to confuse NGOs with political parties, especially the opposition: NGOs are in the [political] opposition, right? The NGO is out [of the government] like Targamadze.
19

I was searching for NGOs, and I asked everyone, and nobody told me where they are. People said, They are like opposition parties. An exceptional few had a foggy notion of what NGOs do: They are independent from the government. They have their own opinions and help people. I think they also get some grants and write some projects. When I hear the term NGO, the first thing that comes to my mind is free consultations. They [NGOs] are involved in politics, in social justice, in religion NGOs have done much for people with disabilit ies, I know but I dont know exactly who has done what.

19

The respondent was referring to Giorgi Targamadze, a Member of Parliament in the opposition.

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

19

Respondents indicated that the extensive media coverage of NGO activities after the Georgia-Russia war in August 2008 contributed to their understanding of NGOs: I have heard that NGOs helped people by giving aid and providing free health care for IDPs. They [NGOs] are working for people and after the war NGOs helped IDPs. When asked what motivated NGOs, participants identified patriotism, a love of people, government, and financial interests: The government needs NGOs; it uses them. NGOs are attached to government. In the past there were NGOs. Now there are NGOs under the governments umbrella. The Ramishvili organization is an NGO that stands with the government. We need those who will stand with people. They want a united Georgia. This is their motivation. NGOs are driven by financial interests; they get some money for various activities. But NGOs work for people as well, I think. Again, a noticeable recurring trend was the perception that NGOs were attached to the government and/or were oppositional political parties. Another recurring theme was that NGOs are a kind of bridge between citizens and the government and that they work on social issues. Respondents generally believed that NGOs selected issues based on surveys that they conducted. However, discussions about these surveys reiterated some citizens confusion of NGOs and political parties. NGO surveys sometimes sounded more like political party actions. Other respondents indicated that NGOs select issues dictated by donor agencies: They [NGOs] sometimes come to us, organize meetings in the streets, and ask for our priority problems. They came from NGOs, called the people to come out of their houses, and asked us: W hat do you need? What problems you have? How can we help you? [They said they would] renovate the elevators, the roofs of the houses, and help us with financial and health problems. There were cases when I was stopped at the entrance of m etro stations. I dont remember who exactly they were, but they [possibly NGO representatives] asked me questions like: How many people are in my family? How much do we earn? How satisfied am I with life? And they also requested my signature. After the Rose Revolution, NGOs became off-side [financing was significantly reduced, there was a brain drain as many entered the government, and many NGOs lost their influence] NGOs are dictated by donors. NGOs have no more resources to do what they want to do.
20

20

The respondent referred to Levan Ramishvili, leader of the NGO Liberty Institute (see www.liberty.ge).

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

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NGOs are just filling the gap in the governments activities. When asked if they could name specific NGOs, participants were often confused. They could remember only a few by name: [Which NGOs have you heard about?] The Young Lawyers Association. [Why?] Because they are the most active. They care about people. NGOs sound like opposition parties, but I know that this is financed by foreign organizations like 21 22 the Soros Organization. I know for example an NGO called Article 42. I remember there is one NGO Union of Citizens of Georgia, No, sorry. This is an Orthodox 24 movement which fights for Orthodox beliefs, and it is called the Orthodox Parents Union. I have also heard about an NGO called The Blood Bank. now they are very active. We need NGOs like Kmara,
26 25 23

They got some financial support and

which will be useful for people.


27

Eka Tutberidze [confused with Tea Tutberidze] also has an NGO and is against our Patriarch. I have heard about the NGO CARE.
28

They have done much in the villages.

Is the Red Cross an NGO? [] The Red Cross helped me very much: my brother was kidnapped 29 in Tskhinvali and they [ICRC] rescued him from jail. I know Unicap [meaning UNICEF]. This NGO is doing much for children. I know Democrat Meskhs Union. Aldagi
31 30

They are really helping people.

was an NGO. BP

32

is a NGO.

21 22

The respondent meant the Open Society Georgia Foundation (see www.osgf.ge). See www.article42.ge. 23 This is a currently inactive political party established by former president Eduard Shevardnadze (see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Union_of_Citizens_of_Georgia). 24 Media coverage of this NGO can be found at: http://georgiamediacentre.com/category/tags/orthodox_parents_union and http://economist.com.ge/news_details.php?id=326&version=490. 25 See LCC Blood Bank at www.blood.com.ge. 26 Kmara is a Georgian word, which translates as Enough; this was a Georgian civic resistance movement , which undermined the government of Eduard Shevardnadze. Kmara led the protests that precipitated his downfall in what became known as the Rose Revolution. 27 Media coverage on this issue is at: http://georgiamediacentre.com/content/tea_tutberidzes_swear_word_assault_patriarch. 28 CARE is an international NGO in the Caucasus: www.care-caucasus.org.ge. 29 The de facto government of South Ossetia considers the administrative border into South Ossetia a state border and arrests Georgians crossing this international border illegally. 30 This is a local NGO in Akhaltsikhe. 31 Aldagi BCI is an insurance company (see www.aldagibci.ge). 32 British Petroleum is also a company (see www.bp.com). In Akhaltsikhe areas, where BP was mentioned in a focus group, BP compensated landowners when it constructed the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) oil pipeline.

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As the last quotation illustrates, participants sometimes confused NGOs with private companies. Participants main source of information about NGOs seemed to be television: TV stations cover NGO activities very rarely and in small parts, but I have seen them quite 33 frequently on Aku [TV]. On TV I have seen the issue of child abuse and that there are some ten NGOs who are working on this, but only three [NGOs] are active. I have seen on TV that an NGO was helping youth find employment, but when I wanted to find this NGO, nobody could tell me where they were. [Have you ever seen any information about NGOs on the Internet?] No, never. Respondents opinions about NGOs appeared to be influenced by TV, which has relatively poor coverage of NGOs work. Further, participants considered television a rather unreliable source of information. A respondent commented, [Television stations] make the coverage as they want. Television is not free; they are under pressure from the government. When asked what issues they would like to see NGOs addressing, participants described problems that they faced in their everyday lives. In general, citizens felt that NGOs should take responsibility for bringing peoples concerns to the government: They need to work on improving our standard of living. The prices of everything are increasing and people have financial difficulties. I wish that they would stand with us, and we will do the same for them. They should help us to decrease the prices. The prices of utilities, electricity, water, have greatly increased. They need to be between the people and government [facilitate the dialogue]. The NGOs should work for our employment. They should be more active in ensuring accessible and quality health care services. They should bring our problems to the government; they have more power than ordinary citizens. The NGOs should try to reduce prices of medicines. NGOs should open factories to employ people. They should work on agriculture, sports, education, and economic issues. They should be mediators between us and Mr. President. Another recurring trend was respondents hope that NGOs would interact more with citizens:
34

33 34

Aku is a nickname of Davit Akubardia, the founder of Kavkasia TV (see: www.kavkasiatv.ge). They saw it on Trialeti TV, a local television station in Shida Kartli.

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First, a research of needs should be conducted, and then a peaceful demonstration in front of the governments office should be organized. They should come to our districts, and even if they do not do anything, they could just give us verbal or moral support. They should win our trust and we will follow them .

2. Factors Encouraging and Discouraging Citizens Participation in NGO Activities None of the focus group participants had ever approached an NGO for assistance with addressing their concerns, largely due to insufficient information: I dont know where to go and to whom to apply. There is an information vacuum. I have some problems, but who [which NGO] can help me? But, for instance, I know that if I need some 35 assistance I can go to the Young Lawyers Association. They even fight against domestic violence. Over 90 percent of citizens dont know where to find an NGO with which to be engaged. People dont see NGOs maybe the government doesnt allow NGOs to be seen. If I knew that there were NGOs, I would for sure apply to them to help me. Participants knew that other people had received assistance from NGOs. However, they struggled to offer concrete examples: I never needed an NGOs assistance and dont personally know anyone who has needed this, but I have heard on TV that NGOs have helped many people. I remember an NGO [unknown title] that has helped people. I remember there was an NGO that helped people with disabilities by giving them free food. They were financed by foreign NGOs. Some participants expressed disappointment with NGOs: NGOs spend only 20 percent of their finances on the people. Im not pleased with CAREs activities [in Akhaltsikhe]. They gave five sacks of potato seeds and told us to give back 15 sacks. What is this?! Ok, I will give 15 sacks of seed, but not to CARE: it is better to give to other farmers. Im not pleased with Mercy Corps activities; they built a road in such a way that after the rain it was completely destroyed.

35

The respondent referred to the Georgian Young Lawyers Association (see www.gyla.ge).

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23

Other respondents were satisfied with the work of NGOs and provided concrete examples: I am pleased that NGOs are helping children. I have heard that they have also solved the water supply issues in villages. NGOs brought firewood for free. I asked the driver, Who is sending this firewood? And he told me that it was from an NGO. Many thanks for this. I remember the school was half-built and NGOs started to work on this issue with the local government [] now children are studying in this school [] this is great. I am very pleased with NGO activities. For instance, one NGO had psychologists sent to prisoners to help them . Participants said they were engaged in prior NGO activities as survey respondents, volunteers, trainees, and participants in demonstrations: I sometimes participated in NGO surveys [but dont remember the details]. They are coming to my house and they ask questions. I was working as a volunteer. I was calling vulnerable families to inform them about the aid available. I was doing this because it was a pleasure to help the poor. I participated in a training organized by Fair Elections. It was really useful. I am working as a minibus driver and I have participated in demonstrations. We got a result, but I dont know if this demonstration was organized by an NGO. The result was attached to the local 37 city halls kind decision afterwards on TV. One participant had attended a free accounting and computer literacy course, designed to help people secure a job. Overall, however, citizens participation seemed relatively passive. Again, participants seemed to lack information about NGOs. Participants emphasized the importance of making information about NGO activities more available. Some citizens were interested in becoming involved in NGOs: I would like to join an NGO as a volunteer to collect information, a respondent commented. I could also work physically [] where are they [NGOs]? Other citizens were skeptical. Fear prevented some citizens from participating in NGOs activities. They were wary of someone (mis)using them. They did not want to encounter problems or serve someone elses personal interests. Thus, distrust discouraged people from participating in NGOs: There are some NGOs, who collect money in the streets to help other people. We dont know where this money goes in the end we dont trust them.
36

36 37

The respondent referred to the International Society for Fair Elections and Democracy (ISFED) (see www.isfed.ge). In 2009, Batumi City Hall announced minimum requirements for minibus owners to retain their licenses. The City Hall gave minibus owners very little time to upgrade their minibuses. A local NGO, the Institute of Democracy, organized a demonstration of 350 minibus drivers/owners. As a result, the City Hall changed the time schedule: one year was given to minibus owners to meet the new standards. In the end, however, participants attributed the result to the City Hall rather than the NGO organizers.

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I will not join an NGO for someone elses sake. Many [people] think that they [NGOs] are connected with opposition parties, and they fear that if they join an NGO in its activities, they might have some problems with the government. People dont know who the NGOs are and so they have fear. Im a 20-year-old girl; nobody listens to me []. In the meetings organized by local government, when discussing local problems, only men are represented [] . I dont want to have the same situation when working with NGOs []. Also, the problem is that we never thought that NGOs could help us. Peoples self-perceived lack of skills and knowledge may present another obstacle. A respondent commented, NGOs require good knowledge of English, computer skills you need to be a professional lawyer or economist to work with an NGO. Citizens also doubted that they (or anyone) could affect change: People have no more belief in anythingif I join an NGO, how will this matter? Does an NGO need me? What do they want me to do? How do I know who they are? I dont want to be engaged in such activities that again will [not have results]. I am an IDP from Abkhazia and I lived in the Hotel Medea in Batumi. When they [the government] pushed us out of the building, only the NGOs stood with us and helped. But unfortunately the NGOs were not strong enough to change the governments decis ion. Participants also commented that people were too busy with their everyday lives to become involved in NGOs: People are worried more about their own families and their everyday lives, rather than about the public interest. Participants struggled to identify factors that could stimulate citizens involvement in NGOs: If we know that NGOs have done something, something good for society, it will for sure motivate us to be engaged in their activities. We need some trust and the belief that NGOs can really do something. We also need to be paid for our involvement. Thus, establishing a positive track record, trust, and financial compensation were among the motivating factors mentioned. Participants also tended to agree that the dissemination of more information was crucial for involving people in NGO activities. Participants expressed interest in receiving more information about NGOs and their activities. For example, NGOs could organize special TV shows and have more public outreach activities to inform citizens about their work, participants said. They also suggested that NGOs go out into the street and meet the citizens that they purport to represent: We know some NGOs, some three or four, which are active [in TV]. But we dont know the others. What do they do? We need more information.

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It is not enough that NGOs are only shown in small parts on TV. For instance, Nana Kakabadze represents the NGO Article 42 [actually she leads the NGO Former political prisoners for human 38 rights ]. They should go to the people and explain what they can offer them. NGOs could also have more special TV shows [] and then people will be better informed about them. NGOs should meet the people people do not know them . In conclusion, the focus groups revealed the following key findings: Citizens vaguely understood the purpose of NGOs and knew even less about NGOs activities. They often confused NGOs with opposition political parties. When asked what motivated NGOs, citizens identified the government, financial interests, and/or donors. However, NGOs sometimes undertook initiatives that benefited people, they said. Citizens hoped that NGOs would be a bridge between them and the government, particularly pushing the government to address issues such as unemployment, the rising cost of living, healthcare, and education. Television served as citizens main source of information about NGOs, though citizens tended not to trust the media and said that it rarely aired objective information about NGOs. Insufficient information about NGOs, distrust, concern over political manipulation, busy schedules, nihilism, and disbelief that NGOs have the ability to instigate change discouraged citizens from becoming engaged in NGO activities. Better information sharing about NGO activities, evidence of a positive record of accomplishments, and establishing trust could encourage citizens to become more involved in NGOs.

38

See http://fpphr.org.ge.

Advocacy Capacity Assessment of Georgian NGOs

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ANNEX 1. Interview Guide USAID CSO AI Interview Guide


Date: Start time: Organizational Background Information 1. Name(s), surname(s) and position(s) of respondent(s): 2. Organizations Name: 3. Organizations Acronym: 4. Mobile: 5. Landline: 6. Email: 7. Website (if available): 8. Organizations location (and add regional offices, if any) Address: City, village, settlement: Municipality: Region: 9. Where does your organization operate? (Researcher: write specific locations) Internationally: National level: Regions: Municipality: City: Village/settlement: 10. Type of organization 1 Independent NGO (membership-based) 2 Independent NGO (not membership-based) 3 Business Association 4 Branch of Georgian NGO 5 Branch of Foreign NGO 6 Coalition/Network Other (specify) 11. Who are your primary beneficiaries: (Do not read the possible answers to the respondent) 1 Media/Journalists 2 Representatives of state agencies 3 Women 4 IDPs Interviewers: End time:

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5 6 7 8 9

Youth Children Persons with disabilities SMEs Citizens in general Other (specify) Other (specify)

12. What is your mission statement? 13. On what issue or issues do you focus? (Do not show the respondent the possible answers. Rank in order of importance with 1 being the most important) Issue Rank Democracy building 1 Demography 2 Economy/Business climate 3 Education 4 Environmental issues 5 Foreign affairs 6 Gender equality/women rights 7 Local governance/state governance 8 Health 9 10 Rule of law 11 Media 12 Ethnic minorities 13 Human rights 14 Elections 15 Security 16 Persons with disabilities / special needs 17 IDPs 18 Social affairs 19 Tourism 20 Conflict resolution Other (specify) Other (specify) 14. How many full-time staff do you have in total? 15. How many part-time staff do you have in total? 16. What kinds of training has your staff received? 17. What types of further training or capacity development do you feel your NGO could use? 18. What was your total annual budget in 2010 [in USD]? 19. Who have been your prior donors (2007-2010)? Advocacy knowledge and experience 20. Now we have some questions about advocacy and your organizations advocacy experience. First, wed like to understand what the term advocacy means to you?

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Defining Advocacy
Many definitions of advocacy exist. It can be defined as an active process through which citizens seek to influence political and social change. Effective advocacy often includes various steps: ensuring the issue is timely; collecting information about the issue; formulating a viable policy position; securing sufficient resources; building partnerships; taking action; and monitoring policy changes to ensure that they are implemented well. 21. In what year was your organizations first advocacy campaign: 22. Altogether, approximately how many advocacy campaigns has your organization carried out in the past? 23. [If more than three,] Please tell us about three advocacy initiatives that you have undertaken sometime in the last five years (so since 2006). It would be best if these initiatives have been completed: Nr. 1 2 3 24. Looking forward, what would you consider priority advocacy issues for your NGO in the next five years? 25. Has your organization created a strategic plan for the next few years? Now we have some more specific questions about your past advocacy initiatives. It may help to focus on one advocacy initiative. 1. Issue is timely and significant a. How do you go about deciding on which issues you will advocate? To what extent do you think the issue youre advocating for is a key concern for your constituents (identified above)? What makes you think that? (e.g., what evidence do you have, such as reports, data, interviews, focus groups with constituents, etc.) o To what extent does the advocacy address an issue that concerns diverse constituents? (e.g., age, gender, economic status, ethnicity) Please give some examples from some of your different advocacy initiatives ( Note: never, sometimes, always assesses if the issue is a vital concern to constituents ). b. To what extent is the advocacy initiative important to the CSO or its clients? What evidence do you have of its importance? Examples from other advocacy initiatives? c. What opportunities existed for your advocacy effort (e.g., upcoming elections)? To what extent did the opportunities contribute to the effectiveness of your action? Can you please give some examples from different advocacy initiatives? d. What did key decision-makers (ones who have some influence over the advocacy issue) think about your advocacy initiative? Year(s) Problem Aim What happened (result, if any)?

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Who were the key decision-makers? In the beginning, how receptive were decision-makers to your initiative?

2. CSO devises strategy or action plan for its advocacy initiative a. When you first started your advocacy initiative, to what extent did you consider who the key stakeholders were? What were their positions (views on the issue)? What strategies did you have for involving them in advocacy or convincing them?

b. Who, if anyone, was against or unconvinced of your advocacy effort?


What plans, if any existed, to convince them? What steps did you plan to win them over to your side? Did you have a written contingency plan?

c. Did you have a written strategy or work plan? What did it contain? (activities, tasks assigned) d. Who was involved in creating the work plan? (e.g., target groups, key stakeholders, partnerswere they involved? How were diverse interests / needs reflected in the strategy / workplan? e. To what extent were different options discussed? For example what alternative strategies did you have? 3. CSO collects information and input about the issue a. Which decision-makers (e.g. government agencies, national, local) played an important role in the issue for which you were advocating? What role did they play in the issue? What did they know about the issue for which you were advocating? At the outset of your campaign, what was their position on this issue? (note: did the CSO investigate their position extensively at the beginning of the campaign?) And in other advocacy initiatives? b. How did you collect information about the issue? What methods were used (e.g., public meetings, focus groups, survey, interviews, etc.)? How was the general public involved in providing input, if at all? (including from beyond immediate stakeholders) How were women involved, if at all? Minorities? How about for your other advocacy initiatives? c. [If they did a survey] How did you select your sample? How do you ensure input from all relevant groups was collected (e.g., women, minorities)? How about for other advocacy initiatives? d. How did you use the information that you collected in your research in making the policy position (e.g. in a summary/position paper)? And in other advocacy initiatives? Can we have any copies of your summaries / position papers?

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e. What existing legislation and/or government policies were relevant to your advocacy initiative (e.g., legal, political, health, freedom of information, UN Declaration of Human Rights) ? How were they relevant? What about in other advocacy initiatives? Can we have copies of any written policy analyses?

4. CSO formulates a viable policy position on the issue a. How were stakeholders involved in formulating the policy recommendations, if at all? Who was involved (e.g., diverse stakeholders, gender-sensitive)? How if at all was a gender perspective considered in formulating the policy recommendation? (Example?) How were stakeholders involved in formulating policy recommendations in your other campaigns? For example? b. What was your policy position on the issue? (Researcher check: is it clear? Is it convincing?) What was your policy position in your other advocacy campaign(s)? c. What rationale (or reasoning) did you use to support your policy position? (Researcher check: is it coherent? Is it persuasive? You can also examine the policy position itself for this question) How has the information that you collected about the issue informed your policy position, if at all? Can you please give me an example? How about in other campaigns: what was your rationale? How did you draw from the information you collected?

5. CSO obtains and/or allocates resources (especially time and money for advocacy a. What contributions did you collect from people or groups in Georgia to support your advocacy initiative, if any (human, financial, etc.)? Who contributed (e.g., members, interested citizens, other organizations, businesses, Georgian foundations, and/or religious groups)? How about for your other advocacy initiatives? b. What resources did your organization assign to the advocacy initiative? What types of resources (e.g., financial, human, other)? To what extent did you have sufficient resources (e.g., staff, finances)? How about in other advocacy initiatives? c. How were volunteers involved in your advocacy initiative, if at all (including also the board)? How many were involved? How was the board involved in your advocacy efforts, if at all (e.g., speaking publicly, fundraising)? What did they do? Who within the NGO managed their time/involvement, if anyone? How about in your other advocacy initiatives? d. Which international agencies were interested in this issue? Did you apply to them for financial support for your advocacy around this issue? Did they fund your organization?

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How about for other issues that you advocated for?

6. CSO builds coalitions & networks to cooperate in joint action on the issue a. Which individuals or groups outside your organization were involved in your advocacy initiative, if any? (Note: Researcher note how many) How about in your other advocacy initiatives? b. Was your organization involved in any coalition or working group on the issue? If a coalition did not exist, did you start one? What role did you play in that coalition? (Note: how active? Take lead? Steering committee?) If no, for what reasons? How about regarding other advocacy initiatives? c. How did your organization share information with other NGOs/groups that have similar interests, if at all (e.g., such as by having informal contacts, joint meetings, identifying common interests, sharing resources)? Did you have ad-hoc or regular meetings? Formal or informal? Did you make joint plans to coordinate your advocacy efforts or advocate jointly? Did you share resources (e.g., financial, human)? How about in other advocacy initiatives? d. How did you cooperate in any joint actions or partnerships with other interested groups? Did you undertake any joint actions? What other interested groups were involved (Researcher: number)? How about for your other advocacy initiatives? 7. CSO takes actions to influence policy or other aspects of the issue a. How did you engage media in your advocacy efforts, if at all? (Researcher: multiple media covered advocacy initiative: radio, print, TV, different regions, debates, news)? How much coverage did your advocacy initiative receive? Which media covered it (e.g., local, national, print, radio, tv)? [Request copies articles, etc.] What about in your other campaigns? b. Did you hold any meetings with the public to raise awareness about the issue and/or gain public support? [Examples] How many did you have? How about in your other advocacy initiatives? c. How did you involve your members or citizens in taking direct actions to advocate for the issue, if at all? (e.g., letter-writing, public demonstrations) How many members / citizens were involved? And in other advocacy initiatives? d. How have you lobbied or advocated for your policy position to the relevant policy-makers, if at all? (e.g., testifying in hearings, personal visits to legislators, prominent public faces speaking publicly for the issue) Who was involved (researcher: only CSO or other citizens, opinion-makers as well; how many; diverse?) What about in your other advocacy efforts?

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e. Did you draft any model legislation? To whom did you give it? (Researcher: legislators) Can we see a copy of it? (Researcher: take copy and review for the precision of the recommendations) How about in other advocacy campaigns? f. How did you present your policy position? To whom did you present it? Was it presented orally or in writing? If it was in writing, may we please see it? How did you change the format or information in your written policy position for different audiences, if at all (e.g., general public, minister, policy experts)? How about for other advocacy initiatives? g. How did you present your policy position visually to stakeholders, if at all? For example, did you use graphs or illustrations? Can we please see some examples? (Researcher check: is it attractive? Is it effective?) How about in other advocacy initiatives? 8. CSO takes follow up actions to foster implementation/public interest a. Since the passage of the law/policy/court decision, please tell us about any efforts you have taken to monitor the implementation of this decision. (e.g., making sure that authorized government funds are disbursed; implementing regulations written and disseminated; checking implementation in field sites; asking members for feedback on how well it is working, etc.) Regular or ad-hoc? Consultations with stakeholders to see how it impacts them? And what about in other advocacy initiatives? b. Who is responsible for monitoring the implementation of the policy? (Researcher: staff/volunteer) How much time do they dedicate to monitoring ( part/full-time)? Are any resources dedicated to monitoring? Please explain. How about in other advocacy initiatives? c. [If desired policy was not passed] did you continue to advocate for your recommendations? Did you watch for opportunities to bring the issue up again? For example? Did you try a different approach or new advocacy tactics? Please tell me about them. What about in other advocacy initiatives? d. [If desired policy was not passed] How if at all did you monitor public awareness and interest in the issue to look for examples, incidents, or opportunities to create a sense of urgency on the issue? For example? How about in other advocacy initiatives? Were curious to know if you found anything from our discussion today interesting or new?

Do you have anything else that you would like to add?

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Researcher notes (To be completed by the researcher immediately after the interview) Please describe any issues encountered with the interview (e.g. the respondent did not have enough time to complete it and/or the interview was rushed; the respondent was hesitant to talk; the respondent expressed frustration with the long process and/or questions, etc.) Please note any comments made by the respondent(s) during the interview, including: a) how they felt about the process and b) any comments made that illustrated learning/capacity-building (e.g., Hmm, I never thought of that before; Oh, thats a good idea [and/or] well do that next time.) List any documents collected from the CSO here and enclose them with the final individual report:

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ANNEX 2. Scorecard
USAID CSO Advocacy Index Score Card
Index Component 1. Issue is timely and significant CSO has no evidence that the issue is of vital concern to constituents (e.g. from consultations or existing data) and/or does not know who constituents are; CSO never has such evidence CSO has some evidence that the issue is of concern to its constituents (but more/diverse constituents could have been consulted and/or more/better evidence could have been gathered); CSO sometimes but not always gathers evidence that the issue is vital to constituents. Moderate evidence exists that issue is rather important, but the evidence could be stronger; CSO only sometimes considers how the issue is important CSO has much evidence that the issue is a vital concern to constituents, but fails to consider a some crucial constituents (e.g., by age, gender economic status, ethnicity, etc.); CSO usually collects evidence to identify issues as key concerns CSO has much evidence that the issue is very important, but could still have stronger evidence; CSO usually gathers such evidence, but not always CSO identifies multiple opportunities; the opportunities will contribute to the effectiveness of the action; CSO usually identifies opportunities for effective action CSO has extensive evidence from diverse constituents (e.g., age, gender, economic status, ethnicity etc.) that the issue is a vital concern; CSO always does this for every advocacy campaign Scores 1 2 3 4 5

a. Issue is of vital concern to the groups constituents

CSO has a little vague / poor quality evidence that issue is of concern to its constituents; CSO only rarely collects such evidence

b. Issue is critically important to the current or future well-being of the CSO and/or its clients, but its importance is not yet broadly understood c. New opportunities for effective action exist (Note: A51 may be upcoming elections, new governing authorities, public pressure, int'l pressure, newfound resources, CSO or other partners willing to support efforts, etc.)

Issue is not critically important and/or CSO has not considered whether it is important; CSO never considers/has such evidence No opportunities for the action exist and/or CSO has not considered whether new opportunities exist or if they will be effective. CSO never considers whether opportunities for action exist

Issue is a little but not critically important; CSO has minimal/poor quality evidence that it is important; CSO rarely collects evidence of importance for advocacy campaigns Minimal opportunities for the action exist and/or will contribute little to the effectiveness of the action; CSO rarely considers whether opportunities for advocacy actions exist

CSO has extensive evidence that the issue is critically important; CSO always does this for every advocacy campaign

A few opportunities for action exist; the opportunities will contribute somewhat to the effectiveness of the action; CSO only sometimes considers opportunities for effective action Some decision-makers are receptive, but few are key decision-makers; CSO only sometimes ensures key decision-makers are receptive

CSO details many opportunities for very effective action; CSO can detail effective opportunities for every advocacy initiative

d. At least a few key decision makers are receptive to the issue (Note: a "key" decisionmaker is one who is relevant to the campaign)

CSO does not know if decision-makers are receptive or no decisionmakers are receptive; CSO never ensures a few key decision-makers are receptive

Few decision-makers are receptive and they are not key decision-makers; CSO rarely ensures key decision-makers are receptive.

Multiple key decisionmakers are receptive; CSO usually ensures key decision-makers are receptive

Many key decisionmakers are receptive to issue; CSO always ensures key decisionmakers are receptive

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2. CSO devises strategy or action plan for its advocacy initiative CSO has minimal CSO did not consider consideration of key any stakeholders or their stakeholders, but does a. CSO "maps" key position on the issue; CSO not examine their stakeholders and their never considers key positions; CSO rarely positions on the issue stakeholders or their considers key position stakeholders and their positions CSO identifies who uncommitted or b. Strategy considers opposition might be, but ways to bring CSO does not have any does not make strategy to uncommitted and strategy; CSO never has convince them; CSO opposition groups over any strategy rarely strategizes to to CSO's side convince uncommitted/opposition c. CSO makes strategy or work plan with concrete activities and tasks assigned CSO does not have any strategy; CSO never has any strategy CSO has vague, unwritten strategy; CSO rarely has any strategy

CSO has some consideration of key stakeholders and some mapping of their positions on the issue; CSO sometimes considers key stakeholders and their positions CSO identifies uncommitted OR opposition as well as strategy to convince them; CSO sometimes considers strategy for uncommitted or opposition

CSO undertakes basic mapping exercise of key stakeholders and their positions on the issue; CSO usually undertakes such a mapping exercise CSO identifies uncommitted and opposition, as well as some strategy to convince them; CSO usually identifies uncommitted and opposition CSO has clear strategy with activities but perhaps unclear who will do them; CSO has usually has strategy CSO consults with multiple key stakeholders in compiling strategy; CSO usually consults with key stakeholders for strategy CSO carefully considers multiple possible advocacy strategies; CSO usually considers multiple possible strategies CSO identifies all relevant gov. agencies; knows their roles; has some understanding of the relevant agencies' knowledge and/or positions on the issue; CSO usually identifies relevant gov. agencies and has some understanding.

CSO undertakes extensive, detailed mapping of the key stakeholders and their positions on the issue; CSO always undertakes such mapping CSO identifies uncommitted and opposition and has clear strategy for convincing them; CSO always has clear strategy for convincing them CSO has very clear strategy with concrete activities and tasks assigned to relevant persons; CSO always has such a clear strategy CSO consults extensively with diverse stakeholders; CSO always consults with diverse stakeholders in compiling strategy CSO carefully considers a full range of possible alternative strategies and makes contingency plans; CSO always considers alternative strategies

CSO has some strategy, but it is not very specific; CSO sometimes has a strategy

d. Diverse stakeholders involved in compiling strategy

CSO does not involve any stakeholders in compiling strategy; CSO never involves stakeholders in compiling strategy

CSO consults minimally with a few stakeholders; CSO rarely consults with stakeholders in compiling strategy

CSO consults some with key stakeholders; CSO sometimes consults with stakeholders in compiling strategy

e. Various possible strategies or approaches to advocacy are considered, including a contingency

CSO does not consider alternative approaches; CSO never considers alternative approaches

CSO has vague, minimal consideration of alternative strategies; CSO rarely considers alternative approaches

CSO considers carefully 12 alternative advocacy strategies; CSO sometimes considers alternative strategies

3. CSO collects information and input about the issue CSO identified a few government agencies, but they are not relevant; CSO has very vague notion of what the gov. roles, knowledge about the issue and/or position on the issue are. CSO rarely examines relevant gov. agencies' roles, etc. CSO identifies some relevant gov. agencies; has some understanding of their roles, knowledge about the issue, and/or position on the issue; CSO sometimes identifies the relevant gov. agencies and their roles, knowledge, and position on issues. CSO identifies all relevant gov. agencies; investigates extensively their roles, knowledge and position regarding the issue; CSO always does this for every advocacy initiative.

a. Relevant government agencies and their respective roles in the issue are identified at national and local levels; knowledge and positions investigated

CSO did not consider which agencies were relevant, their roles, knowledge about the issue or position on the issue; CSO never considered this in advocacy efforts

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b. General public input is solicited (including from women and minorities) on the issue via public meetings, focus groups, etc.

CSO did not collect any public input; CSO never collects any public input.

CSO collected ad-hoc public input from a few non-representative people; CSO rarely collects public input

CSO gathers some public input on the issue, but diverse interests/input are not included and/or the method of collecting input is inappropriate; CSO only sometimes gathers public input

CSO gathers diverse public input, but the method(s) could have been more appropriate and/or more diverse input gathered (e.g., beyond immediate stakeholders); the CSO usually collects public input from diverse stakeholders CSO uses survey to collect representative input on the issue, including from relevant groups (e.g., women and minorities); CSO usually carries out representative surveys to collect input CSO uses the information collected to write a good summary/position paper; CSO usually does this

c. Representative input is collected on the issue via surveys (including from women and minorities, where appropriate)

CSO does not use a survey to collect representative input; CSO never collects representative input

CSO collects adhoc/informally input, but it is not representative and/or does not include women and minorities although their input is appropriate; CSO rarely collects representative input CSO does not compile information/data in a summary or position paper; CSO rarely uses information on the issue CSO conducts weak policy analysis; CSO rarely conducts policy analyses to inform advocacy initiatives

CSO uses survey to collect representative input on the issue, but sampling is problematic and/or relevant groups (e.g., women and minorities) are not represented; CSO only sometimes gathers representative input

CSO extensively collected input about the issue from diverse members of the general public (women, minorities, ages, economic status, etc.), including from beyond immediate stakeholders using appropriate methods; CSO always collects such diverse input for its advocacy CSO uses a survey to collect representative input on the issue, including from relevant groups (e.g. women and minorities); CSO always uses a survey to collect representative input for its advocacy initiatives CSO uses informaiton and data in a well-written summary/position paper on the issue; CSO always does this

CSO does not use collected information and data on the issue in making policy recommendations; CSO never uses existing information or data for advocacy positions e. Policy analyses, such CSO does not conduct as the legal, political, policy analyses on the social justice, or health issue; CSO never aspects of the issue, are conducts policy analyses conducted on the issue 4. CSO formulates a viable policy position on the issue d. Existing information and data collected on the issue is used in summaries and/or to inform policy position papers

CSO writes a basic summary/position paper using that information; CSO sometimes does this

CSO analyzes a few policies on the issue (though not all that are relevant); CSO sometimes does this

CSO analyzes multiple relevant policies; CSO usually does this

CSO analyzes all relevant policies; CSO always does this

a. Policy formulation done in participatory (and gender-sensitive) manner

CSO does not involve stakeholders in formulating its policy position; CSO never involves stakeholders in formulating the policy position

CSO has minimal involvement of stakeholders in formulating its policy position; CSO rarely involves stakeholders in formulating its policy position

CSO involves stakeholders in formulating its policy position, but some key stakeholders are left out and/or a gender perspective is not considered; CSO sometimes involves stakeholders in formulating its policy position

CSO involves diverse stakeholders in formulating its policy position; the policy position is gendersensitive; the CSO usually involves diverse stakeholders in formulating its policy position

CSO involves diverse stakeholders in formulating its policy position; the policy position is gendersensitive; the CSO always involves diverse stakeholders in formulating its policy position

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b. Policy position is clearly and convincingly articulated (Note: this does not have to be in writing, though it might help)

CSO has a policy CSO has a policy position position, but it is unclear that is somewhat clear OR and unconvincing; CSO convincing (but not both); rarely has a CSO sometimes has clear clear/convincing policy or convincing policy position position CSO has rationale for CSO has a rationale for its policy position, but it is policy position that is CSO does not have incoherent and coherent OR persuasive unpersuasive; CSO uses coherent, persuasive c. Rationale for policy is (not both); CSO uses some minimal information rationale for its policy coherent, persuasive, information that it collected position; CSO does not collected (2) to formulate and uses information (2) to support its policy rationale; CSO rarely has draw from information collected in component 2 position; CSO sometimes collected (2); CSO never coherent/persuasive has coherent or persuasive does this rationale with (2) position based on information for its policy information collected (2) position 5. CSO obtains and/or allocates resources (especially time and money) for advocacy on the issue a. Contributions [financial] collected from CSO collects a members, interested CSO collects contributions CSO does not collect any contribution from 1 of citizens, and/or from from 2 of these local groups; contributions from local these local groups; CSO other [local] CSO sometimes collects groups; CSO never does rarely collects organizations contributions from local this contributions from local (businesses, groups groups foundations, religious groups, etc.) CSO assigns minimal/ CSO assigns some CSO does not assign any insufficient resources for financial OR human b. Financial or other of its own resources to the the advocacy initiative; resources to the advocacy resources assigned to advocacy initiative; CSO CSO rarely assigns initiative, but could allocate the issue from within the never assigns any sufficient internal more resources; CSO CSO resources to its advocacy resources for its advocacy sometimes assigns these initiatives initiatives resources CSO engages a few CSO engages 1-2 volunteers in its advocacy c. Volunteer time to help CSO does not engage effort and 1-2 Board volunteers in its advocacy advocate for the issue effort but not Board members; the volunteers any volunteers in its obtained and well advocacy; CSO never receive some, but members and/or they are managed (including from not well-managed; CSO insufficient oversight/ engages volunteers in its rarely engages the Board) advocacy management; CSO only sometimes engages volunteers in its advocacy volunteers

CSO does not have a clearly or convincingly articulated policy position; CSO never has a clear or convincingly articulated policy position

CSO has a rather clear and convincing policy position; CSO usually has a clear and convincing policy position CSO has a coherent and persuasive rationale for its policy position; CSO uses a lot of information that it collected (2) to support its policy position; CSO usually has a coherent, persuasive rationale that is based on information collected (2)

CSO has a very clear and very convincing policy position; CSO always has a very clear and very convincing policy position CSO has a very coherent and very persuasive rationale for its policy position, which is supported by extensive evidence collected (2); CSO always has/does this

CSO collects contributions from 3 of these local groups; CSO usually collects contributions from local groups for its advocacy initiatives CSO assigns financial and human resources to the advocacy initiative; CSO usually assigns financial and human resources to its advocacy initiatives CSO engages many volunteers in its advocacy, including Board members; a staff person is responsible for managing the volunteers; CSO usually involves volunteers in its advocacy

CSO collects contributions from 4+ local groups; CSO always collects contributions from multiple local groups CSO assigns significant financial and human resources to the advocacy initiative; CSO always assigns significant resources to its advocacy initiatives CSO consistently engages numerous volunteers, including Board members in its advocacy; their time is well-managed by a designated staff person; the CSO always does this in its advocacy

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d. International agencies with interests in the issue area identified, and their procedures for applying for financial support determined

CSO does not identify any int'l agencies interested in the issue or apply for financial support; CSO never identifies int'l agencies that may be interested in supporting their advocacy

CSO identifies 1 int'l agency interested in the issue, but does not apply for financial support; CSO rarely identifies int'l agencies interested in supporting their advocacy

CSO identifies 1-2 int'l agencies interested in the issue and applies for financial support; CSO sometimes identifies and applies to int'l agencies interested in the issue

CSO identifies multiple int'l agencies interested in the issue, applies, and secures financial support from 1 agency for their advocacy initiative; CSO usually identifies, applies, and secures support from at least 1 agency CSO persuades multiple groups and individuals to become involved in the advocacy initiative; CSO usually convinces multiple individuals and groups to become involved its advocacy CSO often participates actively in coalitions/ working groups on the issue; CSO usually participates in coalitions/working groups related to its advocacy efforts CSO regularly meets other groups with a similar interest to share information and coordinate joint efforts; CSO usually has such cooperation with other groups for its advocacy efforts CSO plans concrete joint actions/partnerships with multiple other interested groups and implements the action, though perhaps the coordination could be improved/ resources better shared; CSO usually partners with other groups

CSO identifies multiple int'l agencies interested in the issue, applies, and secures financial support from 2+ agencies for their advocacy initiatives; CSO always secures support from multiple int'l agencies for its advocacy CSO persuades many diverse groups and individuals to become involved in the advocacy initiative; CSO always persuades a many diverse individuals and groups to be involved CSO participates actively in coalitions/ working groups on the issue and takes a lead in these groups (e.g., forming them if they do not exist); CSO always participates in relevant coalitions/working groups CSO regularly meets other groups with a similar interest to share information, coordinate joint efforts, and share resources; CSO always has such cooperation with other groups for its advocacy efforts CSO plans and implements concrete joint actions/partnerships with multiple interested groups (good coordination occurs among the groups, including sharing of resources); CSO always has such quality partnerships with multiple stakeholders

6. CSO builds coalitions and networks to obtain cooperative efforts for joint action on the issue a. Other groups and individuals with interests concerning the issue identified or persuaded to take an interest (may include govt. organizations which share concerns) b. [Participation and/or formation of a] coalition/network (defined as any type of joint working group) [around the specific advocacy issue] c. [Coordination, cooperation, and information-sharing] with other NGOs/groups that have similar interests, such as by having informal contacts, joint meetings, identifying common interests, etc. CSO does not persuade/involve any stakeholders in the advocacy initiatives; CSO never involves other stakeholders in advocacy CSO persuades 1 other stakeholder to become involved in the advocacy initiative; CSO rarely involves other stakeholders in advocacy CSO persuades a few groups or individuals to become involved in the advocacy initiative; CSO sometimes involves groups/individuals in advocacy CSO participates sometimes in coalitions/working groups on the issue; CSO sometimes is involved in coalitions/working groups related to its advocacy efforts CSO meets regularly with other groups that have a similar interest to share information, but they do not coordinate formally; CSO sometimes coordinates its advocacy efforts with other interested groups

CSO does not form or participate in any type of coalition/working group; CSO never participates in coalitions/working groups

CSO once participated in a coalition/working group on the issue, but the coalition is inactive now and/or the CSO no longer participates in it; CSO rarely participates in coalitions/working groups CSO participates in a few informal meetings with other interested parties; CSO rarely coordinates efforts with other potentially interested groups

CSO does not meet with other interested parties; CSO never coordinates its advocacy efforts with other potentially interested groups

d. Joint or coordinated actions planned [partnerships] (see #6 and #7 below, for carrying out the actions, including sharing resources)

CSO does not plan any joint actions or share resources with other stakeholders; CSO never plans such advocacy efforts with other interested groups

CSO makes some informal plans with another group, but the plans are not implemented and resources are not shared; CSO rarely plans to coordinate actions with other interested groups

CSO plans concrete joint actions/partnerships with one other group and implements this action, but does not share resources; CSO sometimes plans and implements coordinated actions

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7. CSO takes actions to influence policy or other aspects of the issue a. CSO involves diverse media in quality coverage of the issue, towards raising public awareness and securing public support b. Public meetings increase public awareness of the issue and encourage citizen involvement (involving diverse stakeholders) CSO does not have any media coverage; CSO never has any media coverage of its advocacy initiatives CSO initiative/issue is poorly covered by 1 media; CSO rarely has media coverage as part of its advocacy CSO receives coverage in 2-3 media; coverage is of ok quality; CSO sometimes has media coverage CSO quality media coverage from multiple sources; CSO usually has coverage of its advocacy CSO organizes multiple public meeting to raise awareness/ influence policy (though participants not diverse); CSO usually has public meetings as part of its advocacy CSO involves a multiple members/citizens in direct actions; CSO usually involves members/citizens in direct actions CSO undertakes multiple, active lobbying efforts for its policy position and involves a few other stakeholders in lobbying; CSO usually lobbies actively for its policy position CSO drafts model legislation and circulates it to legislators; CSO usually drafts/circulates legislation CSO has 3 versions/ formats of its policy position in writing; the formats/level of detail are adjusted to the appropriate audiences (but perhaps not all relevant audiences); CSO usually does this CSO generates extensive quality media coverage from diverse sources; CSO always has news coverage and public meetings as part of its advocacy CSO organizes multiple public meeting that raise awareness/ influence policy; CSO always has public meetings as part of its advocacy CSO involves multiple and diverse members/ citizens in numerous direct actions; CSO always involves members/citizens in direct actions CSO and members/ citizens actively lobby for policy position, using a diverse range of skills (e.g., testimonies, meetings with legislators, famous faces, etc.); CSO always involves diverse stakeholders in active lobbying CSO drafts precise model legislation and circulates it broadly to legislators; CSO always drafts/circulates model legislation to legislators CSO has 4+ versions / formats of its policy position in writing; they all have the appropriate formats/levels of detail for all relevant audiences; the CSO always does this

CSO does not have any public meetings; CSO never has any news releases or public meetings for its advocacy initiatives

CSO has 1 public meeting to raise awareness / influence policy; CSO rarely has public meetings as part of its advocacy CSO involves 1-2 members/citizens in direct actions; CSO rarely involves members/citizens in direct actions

CSO holds 2-3 public meetings to raise awareness / influence policy; CSO sometimes has public meetings as part of its advocacy

c. Members/citizens encouraged to take appropriate actions, such as writing letters to legislators

CSO does not involve members/citizens in taking actions; CSO never involves members/citizens in direct actions

CSO involves a few members/citizens in direct actions; CSO sometimes involves members/citizens in direct actions

d. Active lobbying conducted for the policy position, such as by testifying in hearings, personal visits to legislators, etc.

CSO does not actively lobby for its policy position; CSO never actively lobbies for its policy position

CSO undertakes minimal, ad-hoc lobbying for its policy position; CSO rarely lobbies actively for its policy position

CSO undertakes some organized lobbying efforts for its policy position; CSO sometimes lobbies actively for its policy position

e. Model legislation drafted and circulated to legislators

CSO does not participate in drafting legislation or circulating it to legislators; CSO never participates in drafting/circulating legislation

CSO drafts some policy ideas but does not circulate them to legislators; CSO rarely drafts/circulates draft legislation to legislators CSO has one format/type of documentation of its policy position that is does not have the appropriate format/detail for the relevant audience; CSO rarely has a written policy position

f. Policy being advocated exists in writing, with formats and levels of detail that are appropriate for various audiences and policy makers

CSO does not have any written documentation of policy position; CSO never has any written documentation of its policy positions

CSO drafts some policy ideas and circulates them to legislators; CSO sometimes drafts/ circulates draft legislation to legislators CSO has 2 versions/formats of its policy position in writing, but the format/ level of detail is only somewhat appropriate for the relevant audiences; CSO sometimes has multiple versions of its policy position in writing

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CSO presents policy CSO presents policy position in an g. Presentation of policy position in an attractive OR CSO presents policy CSO does not present unattractive and position uses attractive effective format (not both); position in an attractive ineffective format; CSO policy position visually; and effective formats, CSO sometimes uses an and effective format; CSO never does this. rarely presents the policy such as graphs CSO usually does this attractive OR effective position in an attractive or format. effective format 8. CSO takes follow up actions, after a policy decision is made, to foster implementation and/or to maintain public interest a. Monitoring the implementation of a newly passed law, policy or court decision, such as CSO has plan for CSO carries out some by making sure that monitoring the CSO has not undertaken CSO carries out minimal, planned monitoring authorized government implementation and any monitoring efforts; ad-hoc monitoring; CSO regularly monitors the funds are disbursed or activities, but these are CSO never undertakes rarely carries out implementing regulations insufficient; CSO implementation; CSO any monitoring efforts monitoring sometimes monitors usually monitors written and disseminated, checking implementation in implementation field sites, asking members for feedback on how well it is working, etc. CSO has not allocated Minimal staff/volunteer Significant b. Some staff or Some staff/volunteer time time OR resources staff/volunteer time and any staff/volunteer time or volunteer time and and some resources resources allocated to resources to monitoring; allocated to monitoring resources are allocated allocated to monitoring; CSO never allocates (not both); CSO rarely monitoring; CSO usually to the issue or policy for CSO sometimes allocates allocates time/ resources time/resources to allocates time and monitoring time/resources to monitoring monitoring to monitoring resources to monitoring CSO undertakes c. [If desired policy was continuous follow-up not passed] At least a advocacy for the policy minimal level of CSO did not undertake CSO had little/ad-hoc CSO undertakes some recommendations, advocacy methods strategic advocacy for the any follow-up efforts to try advocacy for the policy including some maintained to take to get the policy recommendations to be policy recommendations to monitoring of advantage of next passed; CSO rarely recommendations passed; be passed; CSO opportunities to renew opportunity for pressing CSO never undertakes sometimes undertakes undertook follow-up pressure OR try a new the issue, perhaps with a such follow-up advocacy advocacy follow-up advocacy approach; CSO usually reformulated approach or undertakes such followdifferent specifics up advocacy CSO undertakes some d. [If desired policy was CSO had little/ad-hoc monitoring of public CSO undertakes CSO did not monitor not passed] Public continuous monitoring monitoring of public awareness/interest in the public awareness/ interest awareness and interest in issue and has some awareness/interest in the of public awareness and in the issue for ways to issue monitored, to look issue and/or ways to monitoring of opportunities opportunities to renew renew urgency on the for examples, incidents, renew urgency; CSO to create a renewed sense interest in the issue; issue; CSO never opportunities to create or rarely monitors CSO usually monitors of urgency; CSO monitors opportunities for renew a sense of urgency sometimes monitors opportunities for renewed opportunities for renewed pressure on the issue pressure opportunities for renewed renewed pressure pressure Overall AI Score:

CSO presents policy position in a very attractive and very effective format; CSO always does this

CSO has detailed plan and regularly monitors implementation, including by consulting relevant stakeholders to see how the policy change has impacted them; CSO always monitors implementation

Full-time staff and extensive resources allocated to monitoring; CSO always monitors implementation CSO undertakes continuous follow-up advocacy for the policy recommendation, including close monitoring and use of opportunities to renew pressure and trying new approaches; CSO always undertakes such follow-up advocacy CSO undertakes continuous monitoring of public awareness and utilizes every opportunity to renew interest in the issue; CSO always monitors opportunities for renewed pressure

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ANNEX 3. Sample letter to NGOs


Date Name, Title Organization Subject: Invitation to participate in the NGO Advocacy Capacity Assessment Dear Name: It is my pleasure to invite you to participate in the NGO Advocacy Capacity Assessment. The assessment will be conducted as part of Policy, Advocacy and Civil Society Development in Georgia (G-PAC), a project funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and implemented by the East-West Management Institute, Inc. (EWMI). The assessment will assist G-PAC in offering assistance that meets the needs and priorities of NGOs like yours. Your organization is among only 100 NGOs selected from the more than 5,000 NGOs registered in Georgia as a potential participant in this assessment. You were selected based on your prior experience with advocacy initiatives and campaigns, among other factors. Participating in this assessment would involve an in-depth interview focusing on your past advocacy-related work. The Association of Young Economists of Georgia (AYEG), G-PACs sub-contractor, will be carrying out these interviews in February and March 2011. G-PAC will use the assessment findings to design capacity development opportunities, tailored to the needs and priorities of Georgian NGOs. Participating in this assessment may have additional benefits for your organization: Participation in the assessment will better prepare your organization to develop proposals for GPAC grant programs and to participate in G-PAC tailored capacity-building opportunities. In other countries, NGOs have said that they found the assessment process educational. The assessment can serve as a free external evaluation of your organizations advocacy capacity. After the interview, your organization will receive an Advocacy Assessment Report. NGOs elsewhere have used this Report as evidence of their advocacy capacity when applying to international donors for funds. The assessment can support your organization in establishing benchmarks against which to compare organizational progress over time. If you choose to participate, your organization will be eligible for a free, follow-up evaluation. You can then use the initial assessment to identify areas where your organization has progressed over time.

A representative from AYEG will soon telephone you to schedule an interview. The interview will be conducted by two interviewers from AYEG. They will need to speak with members of your staff who have been directly involved in advocacy work, including yourself, as relevant. They may also ask for copies of any research, policy positions, and public relations materials that you have, so that we may understand your work better. Please set aside approximately 2.5 hours for the entire interview process. Towards enhanced validity, their findings will also be reviewed by G-PAC local and international experts who have knowledge of the sector and experience with the USAID assessment process. I would like to assure you that your organizations individual Advocacy Assessment Report will be shared only with your organization and will not be shared publicly or with organizations other then AYEG and GPAC. We greatly appreciate your organizations cooperation in this process and the useful information that you will provide about your advocacy-related work. Sincerely, Fron Nahzi, Chief of Party, G-PAC

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ANNEX 4. Research Statement and Oral Consent Form


Research Statement Date: January 27, 2010 Title of Research: Assessment of the Advocacy Capacity of NGOs in Georgia Principal Researcher: Giorgi Tsimintia Lead Researcher: Associate Researcher:

1. Your Consent The purpose of this Statement is to explain clearly the procedures involved so that you can make an informed decision whether to participate in this research. If you agree to take part, you will be asked to offer your oral consent. You will be given a copy of the Statement to keep. 2. Purpose and Background The purpose of this research is to assess the advocacy capacity of NGOs in Georgia. The assessment will be conducted as part of Policy, Advocacy and Civil Society Development in Georgia (G-PAC), a project funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and implemented by the East-West Management Institute, Inc. (EWMI). The Association of Young Economists of Georgia (AYEG), EWMI/G-PACs sub-contractor, is carrying out the research. The assessment will assist G-PAC in offering assistance that meets the needs and priorities of NGOs like yours. Your organization is among only 100 NGOs selected from more than 5,000 NGOs registered in Georgia as a potential participant in this assessment. You were selected based on your prior experience, among other factors. 3. Funding This research is being funded by EWMI/G-PAC. 4. Procedures Participation in this project will involve an in-depth interview with members of your staff who have been directly involved in advocacy work, including yourself, as relevant. Copies of any research, policy positions, and public relations materials that you have may also be requested, towards understanding your work better. Please set aside approximately 2.5 hours for the entire interview process. Towards enhanced validity, their findings will also be reviewed by EWMI/G-PAC local and international experts who have knowledge of the sector and experience with the USAID assessment process. 5. Possible Benefits Possible benefits include: Participation in the assessment will better prepare your organization to develop proposals for EWMI/G-PAC grant programs and to participate in EWMI/G-PAC tailored capacity-building opportunities during the next four years. The assessment process itself, which can be interesting and even educational. The assessment can serve as a free external evaluation of your organizations advocacy capacity. After the interview, your organization will receive an Advocacy Assessment Report.

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NGOs elsewhere have used this Report as evidence of their advocacy capacity when applying to international donors for funds. The assessment can support your organization in establishing benchmarks against which to compare organizational progress over time. If you participate, your organization will be eligible for a free, follow-up evaluation. You can then use the initial assessment to identify areas where your organization has progressed over time.

6. Privacy, Confidentiality and Disclosure of Information Your organizations individual Advocacy Assessment Report will be shared only with your organization and will not be shared publicly or with organizations other than AYEG and EWMI/G-PAC. In any publication, information will be provided in such a way that neither you nor your organization can be identified. 7. Results The results of the assessment will include an individual assessment report, which will be delivered to your organization and an internal report for EWMI/G-PAC on the overall advocacy capacity of NGOs in Georgia. 8. Participation is Voluntary Participation in any research is voluntary. If you do not wish to take part, you are not obliged to. Your decision whether or not to participate will not affect your relationship with EWMI/G-PAC, or AYEG. Before you decide, a member of the research team can answer any questions you have. 9. Further Information, Queries or Any Problems If you have any complaints about any aspect of the research, the way it is being conducted or any questions about your rights as a research participant, then you may contact: Tamuna Karosanidze Deputy Chief of Party East-West Management Institute, Inc. Policy, Advocacy, and Civil Society Development in Georgia (G-PAC) 5 Marjanishvili St., III floor Telephone: 877 719107 Email: KTamuna@ewmi-gpac.org

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ANNEX 5. Focus Group Guide


I. Main Objective: Examine citizens perceptions and awareness of NGOs advocacy efforts

1. When I mention NGO, what comes to your mind? o What do you think about NGOs? Whats your overall impression about them? o What do you think motivates NGOs to do what they do? o Who do you think NGOs work for? 2. What issues do you usually see NGOs addressing? o What do you think about the issues NGOs address? o To what extent do you feel NGOs programs mirror leading media stories? o How do you think NGOs choose the issues they work on? o What issues would you like to see NGOs addressing? Which issues are the most important for you? 3. What types of activities have you seen NGOs carrying out? (e.g., surveys, street campaigns, town hall meetings, monitoring reports, leaflet distribution, media appearances) o What is your opinion about the activities NGOs carry out? o Which activities are most interesting and/or useful? What makes them interesting/useful? o How do you hear about NGOs activities? (media, friends, NGO representatives) o What impact do you think NGOs activities have had in Georgian society (e.g., positive, negative, both)? o What types of activities would you like to see NGOs carry out in the future?

II.

Main Objective: Examine what encourages or discourages citizens from participating in NGOs advocacy efforts

1. When I mention NGO, what comes to your mind? o Sometimes citizens bring their issue or concern to NGOs so that NGOs will address it. What concerns have you brought to NGOs, if any? What happened afterward? 2. What experiences or interactions have you had with NGOs? o What types of activities have you participated in, if any (e.g., surveys, demonstrations, town hall meetings, leaflet distribution, letter-writing, volunteering)? o For what reasons did you decide to participate? o Which of these activities was most interesting and/or useful? What made them interesting/useful? o Now Im curious: for those of you who did not participate in any NGO activities, for what reasons did you not participate? 3. What factors do you think discourage people from participating in NGOs? o What discourages you? o What do you hear your friends saying about NGOs? o How are NGOs portrayed in the media? 4. What factors encourage citizens to participate in NGOs? o What would make you want to participate in a NGO? o What would make you want to join an NGO? Volunteer for one? Make donations to one? o What do you think NGOs could do to encourage more citizens to become involved in their advocacy efforts?

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ANNEX 6. Individual NGO Advocacy Capacity Assessment Reports


Please see the attached electronic file.

ANNEX 7. List of NGOs Interviewed


Please see the attached electronic file.

ANNEX 8. Transcripts of Focus Groups


Please see the attached electronic file.

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ANNEX 9. NGO AI Scores

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Table 5. Average cohort scores on all indicators and components


Indicator/component 1. Issue is timely and significant a. Issue is of vital concern to the groups constituents b. Issue is critically important to the current or future well-being of the CSO and/or its clients, but its importance is not yet broadly understood c. New opportunities for effective action exist d. At least a few key decision makers are receptive to the issue 2. CSO devises strategy or action plan for its advocacy initiative a. CSO "maps" key stakeholders and their positions on the issue b. Strategy considers ways to bring uncommitted and opposition groups over to CSO's side c. CSO makes strategy or work plan with concrete activities and tasks assigned d. Diverse stakeholders involved in compiling strategy e. Various possible strategies or approaches to advocacy are considered, including a contingency 3. CSO collects information and input about the issue a. Relevant government agencies and their respective roles in the issue are identified at national and local levels; knowledge and positions investigated b. General public input is solicited (including from women and minorities) on the issue via public meetings, focus groups, etc. c. Representative input is collected on the issue via surveys (including from women and minorities, where appropriate) d. Existing information and data on the issue is collected, such as for summaries or position papers e. Policy analyses, such as the legal, political, social justice, or health aspects of the issue, are conducted 4. CSO formulates a viable policy position on the issue a. Policy formulation done in participatory (and gender-sensitive) manner b. Policy position is clearly and convincingly articulated c. Rationale for policy is coherent, persuasive, and uses information collected in component 2 5. CSO obtains and/or allocates resources (especially time and money) for advocacy on the issue a. Contributions [financial] collected from members, interested citizens, and/or from other [local] organizations (businesses, foundations, religious groups, etc.) b. Financial or other resources assigned to the issue from within the CSO c. Volunteer time to help advocate for the issue obtained and well managed (including from the Board) d. International agencies with interests in the issue area identified, and their procedures for applying for financial support determined 6. CSO builds coalitions and networks to obtain cooperative efforts for joint action on the issue a. Other groups and individuals with interests concerning the issue identified or persuaded to take an interest (may include govt. organizations which share concerns) b. [Participation and/or formation of a] coalition/network (defined as any type of joint working group) [around the specific advocacy issue] c. [Coordination and cooperation] with other NGOs/groups that have similar interests, such as by having informal contacts, joint meetings, identifying common interests, sharing resources, etc. d. Joint or coordinated actions planned (see #6 and #7 below, for carrying out the actions) 7. CSO takes actions to influence policy or other aspects of the issue a. CSO involves diverse media in quality coverage of the issue, towards raising public awareness and securing public support b. Public meetings increase public awareness of the issue and encourage citizen involvement (involving diverse stakeholders) c. Members/citizens encouraged to take appropriate actions, such as writing letters to legislators d. Active lobbying conducted for the policy position, such as by testifying in hearings, personal visits to legislators, etc. e. Model legislation drafted and circulated to legislators f. Policy being advocated exists in writing, with formats and levels of detail that are appropriate for various audiences and policy makers Average Score 3.7 3.9 3.9 3.5 3.6 3.2 3.8 3.2 3.4 2.8 2.8 3.5 3.9 3.7 3.4 3.5 3.1 3.3 3.3 3,4 3.3 3.1 2.1 3.4 3.5 3.3 3.4 3.6 3.4 3.4 3.2 3.3 3.6 3.5 3.3 3.3 3.1 3.0

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g. Presentation of policy position uses attractive and effective formats, such as graphs 8. CSO takes follow up actions, after a policy decision is made, to foster implementation and/or to maintain public interest a. Monitoring the implementation of a newly passed law, policy or court decision b. Some staff or volunteer time and resources are allocated to the issue or policy for monitoring c. [If desired policy was not passed] At least a minimal level of advocacy methods maintained to take advantage of next opportunity for pressing the issue, perhaps with a reformulated approach or different specifics d. [If desired policy was not passed] Public awareness and interest in issue monitored, to look for examples, incidents, opportunities to create or renew a sense of urgency on the issue Total Average

3.3 2.8 3.1 2.8

3.0 2.4 26.3

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