Laos

Desk review to conduct assessment of ‘value for money’ provided through CARE International’s programmes to vulnerable and marginalised populations in Asia

This case study has been prepared as part of a study commissioned by CARE International (CI) to assess its long-term impact achieved in the Asia Pacific region between 2005 and 2010. As part of this process CI explored the extent to which socio-economic cost benefit analysis could be applied on a sample of CI projects, using an adapted form of the Social Return on Investment (SROI) methodology1.
The aim of the study was to gain a better understanding of CI’s ability to deliver added benefit and value to participating communities and their societies, given invested resources, whilst testing the feasibility of applying an adapted form of SROI to projects. The study is also expected to contribute to a wider discussion on the usefulness, and applicability, of demonstrating value for money within the contexts CI works.
Given CI’s focus on empowerment, and especially of marginalised and vulnerable women, this case study presents the analysis and findings of four projects: Plantation Community Empowerment Project (PCEP), Sri Lanka Social & Economic Transformation of the Ultra Poor (SETU), Bangladesh Integrated Rural Development and Disaster Mitigation (IRDM), Cambodia Poverty Alleviation in Remote Upland Areas (PARUA), Laos
It is important to note that the projects selected for analysis were initiatives within wider programmes and, as such, were not intended to be illustrative of the overall programme’s magnitude or effectiveness. The SROI methodology is a good fit for CI’s projects due to its participatory nature and valuation of things that matter to stakeholders. However, due to the desk-based nature of this study, these findings should be seen as purely indicative as field research would be required to build a definitive and an accurate picture of impact. Read More...

CARE Rapid Gender Analysis in Lao PDR

Tropical Storm Son Tinh, which hit Lao PDR on 18-19 July 2018, led to a breach in the Xe Pien-Xe Nam Noy hydropower saddle dam dam on 23 July 2018, causing a flash flood through 13 villages downstream in Sanamxay district, Attapeu Province. The Government declared the affected areas a National Disaster Area. CARE undertook a two-phase rapid gender equality and social inclusion (GESI) analysis in Attapeu to provide information and recommendations about the different needs, capacities and coping strategies of women, men, boys and girls including people with a disability and ethnic minority groups. This report is the second version of this evolving analysis and provides a valuable contribution to the limited information available on communities’ lives in the temporary residence camps where they are now residing. [25 pages] Read More...

Northern Uplands – Promoting Climate Resilience (NU PCR) Final Evaluation

NU-PCR is a climate change adaptation project implemented in three districts -- Mai, Samphan, and Ngot Ou -- in Phongsaly, Laos. It has a budget of 2,152,800 €. The project is being implemented by CARE International in Lao PDR as the lead agency together with the partner organisations CCL and SAEDA. NU-PCR worked in 30 villages with 1,778 households and 9,562 direct beneficiaries. The project is designed to improve the resilience of local ethic communities in Phongsaly Province to the impacts of climate Read More...

Northern Uplands Promoting Climate Resilience (NU PCR) Narrative Report

NU-PCR is a climate change adaptation project implemented in three districts -- Mai, Samphan, and Ngot Ou -- in Phongsaly, Laos. It has a budget of 2,152,800 €. The project is being implemented by CARE International in Lao PDR as the lead agency together with the partner organisations CCL and SAEDA. NU-PCR worked in 30 villages with 1,778 households and 9,562 direct beneficiaries. The project is designed to improve the resilience of local ethic communities in Phongsaly Province to the impacts of climate change and to strengthen the capacity of government authorities and villagers. [55 pages] Read More...

Resilient Livelihoods for the Poor Pilot Final Evaluation

This report presents findings from an evaluation of the DFAT-funded Resilient Livelihoods for the Poor (RLP) pilot program in Lao PDR. The evaluation was conducted by the Laos Australia Development Learning Facility (LADLF). It provides key lessons for future investments in the social protection sector in Lao PDR and elsewhere, and contributes to the literature on asset and social transfers in response to poverty reduction in Lao PDR.
The RLP pilot represents an investment of approximately AUD 8 million from January 2014 to July 2017. Its purpose is to improve sustainable livelihoods of poorest households through the provision of productive assets, short-term cash transfers, and technical support addressing care of assets, enterprise development, financial literacy, disability and gender. The RLP pilot targeted 1,200 households in four districts of Lao PDR, namely Xepon, Soukhouma, Mounlapamok and Lao Ngam. The actual implementation of the RLP pilot reached 1,190 households in the beginning of the pilot, which then decreased to 1,154 households at the end of the pilot in June 2017. [56 pages] Read More...

Northern Upland Promoting Climate Resilience Midterm Review

Climate change is increasingly felt by farmers in Phongsaly, the northernmost province of Lao PDR, who depend on weather for maintaining their livelihoods and ecosystems. A more unpredictable length, start and end of the rainy and dry seasons, stronger winds and storms, longer droughts but at the same time increased intensity of rainfall resulting in floods and localized landslides, and erratic temperature patterns with more severe cold and hot spells all heavily impact on livelihoods, people and natural resources. At the same time, farmers are positively as well as negatively influenced by other socio-economic influences such as infrastructure development, international and local market pressures, modernization of agriculture, hydropower expansion and increased connectivity.
Within this dynamic resilience context, CARE, CCL and SAEDA in partnership with local authorities are implementing the „Northern Uplands Promoting Climate Resilience’ (NU PCR) project, in 3 districts of Phongsaly province. Through targeted support on climate risk analysis and planning, gender-responsive livelihood and disaster risk reduction interventions, and research and documentation for advocacy and scaling, the project aims to improve the resilience of communities in 30 villages, directly reaching 1,500 farming households and indirectly more than 78,000 women and men. The project started in 2014 and will be implemented until March 2018.
The NU PCR project has commissioned a mid-term review to assess relevance, effectiveness and efficiency of the project strategies towards achieving the overall objective to date, assess how the project is integrating gender and how this can be enhanced to transform unequal gender relations. The review applied a participatory and strengths- based approach and used a variety of tools such as desk review, key informant interviews, reflection exercises and knowledge, attitude and practice mapping. It was conducted in February-March 2016. Read More...

Northern Upland Promoting Climate Resilience Baseline Report

Weather variability and long term climate change are not recent phenomena or unknown to farmers in Phongsaly, the northernmost province of Lao PDR, who live and thrive from weather-dependent agriculture and ecosystems. A more unpredictable length, start and end of the rainy and dry seasons, stronger winds and storms, longer droughts but at the same time increased intensity of rainfall resulting in floods and localized landslides, and erratic temperature patterns with more severe cold and hot spells all heavily impact on livelihoods, people and natural resources. At the same time, farmers are positively as well as negatively influenced by other socio-economic influences such as infrastructure development, international and local market pressures, modernization of agriculture, hydropower expansion and increased connectivity.
While adversity brings challenges, it also leads to change with farmers already demonstrating successful actions to confront disasters and climate change. Building on their variable capacities, shaped by factors such as gender, poverty, access and control over resources, governance and power imbalances, women and men from a diversity of ethnic groups generate responses and ideas to adapt to the effects of a changing social, economic and natural environment.
Within this dynamic resilience context, CARE, CCL and SAEDA in partnership with local authorities are implementing the „Northern Uplands Promoting Climate Resilience’ (NU PCR) project, in 3 districts of Phongsaly province. Through targeted support on climate risk analysis and planning, gender-responsive livelihood and disaster risk reduction interventions, and research and documentation for advocacy and scaling, the project aims to improve the resilience of communities in 30 villages, directly reaching 1,500 farming households and indirectly more than 78,000 women and men. The project started in 2014 and will be implemented until March 2018. [64] Read More...

Phongsaly Rural Development Project (PRDP) Final Evaluation

Care International Lao in Lao PDR (CARE INTERNATIONAL LAO) since 1992 has assisted implementing several successful projects in Lao PDR. Phongsaly Province is one of target provinces that rural poors are largely witnessed. Phongsaly Province, located in the northern most of Laos, is among the poorest provinces with 94.4% of total villages are poor and 53.3% of total households are poor (Source: NGPES), and 4 of seven districts in Phongsaly Provinces, mainly Mai, Khua, Yot Ou and Samphan Districts have been classified as poor districts among 72 poor districts in the country. The poor villages in three neighboring districts of Khua, Mai and Samphan take 85.8%, 94.7% and 100% respectively against total villages.
The project expands actions initiated under the current EC-funded Food Security project, and expands into two districts, Samphan and Mai. CARE will work with partners to add technically proven interventions and ensure the sustainability and diffusion of food and nutrition interventions locally and on a wider scale. This project was designed through joint CARE and District authority review of the current action and the AusAID and CARE Australia guidelines. Key associates such as the District Offices of Agriculture and Forestry (DAFO), Public Health (DPHO), the Lao Women’s Union (LWU) and other district departments and mass organisations, will be the focus of capacity development actions ranging from policy frameworks to technical approaches. [30 pages] Read More...

Women Organized for Rural Development Endline Evaluation

The 3-year (2014 – 2017) Women Organised for Rural development (WORD) project aimed to ensure benefits to remote ethnic women (REW) and their communities through strengthening community-led farmers and women’s groups (community based organisations - CBOs) in order to strengthen REW livelihoods and foster demand driven service delivery that would sustain beyond the project duration. The project also intended to promote the role of Non- Profit Associations (NPAs) in Lao PDR’s rural development and influence Government of Lao PDR (GoL) policy by documenting and sharing learning about this way of working with NPAs and ethnic minority communities. The project’s overall goal was that: Women’s livelihoods are improved and their interests voiced through strengthened community-based civil society organisations. The project’s specific objectives were:
1. To promote remote ethnic women’s collective actions through Income Generating Activities
2. To strengthen CBOs and NPAs to enable them to support and represent remote ethnic women
3. To enhance linkages between learning, programming and policy influencing. [99 pages] Read More...

Women Organised for Rural development (WORD) project Baseline

The 3-year (2014 – 2017) Women Organised for Rural development (WORD) project ensures benefits to remote ethnic women (REW) and their communities through strengthening community-led farmers and women’s groups (community based organisations - CBOs) in order to strengthen REW livelihoods and foster demand driven service delivery that will sustain beyond the project duration. The project also aims to promote the role of Non-Profit Associations (NPAs) in Lao PDR’s rural development and influence Government of Lao PDR (GoL) policy by documenting and sharing learning about this way of working with NPAs and ethnic minority communities. The project’s overall goal is that: Women’s livelihoods are improved and their interests voiced through strengthened community-based civil society organisations. Key approaches to implementation of the project will be (i) using income-generation activities and small development grants as an ‘entry point’ to women’s empowerment, (ii) gender transformative CBO and NPA strengthening, (iii) working in partnership, and (iv) research and advocacy. [72 pages] Read More...

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