COMIFAC National Coordination bodies at monitoring- evaluation session in N’djamena
From July 1 to 3 [sic] 2013 in N’djamena, Chad, a capacity building workshop on monitoring- evaluation was held for COMIFAC National Co-ordinators (CNC). The workshop’s main objectives included:
- Assessing the implementation of CNC’s AWP 2013 and carrying out mid-term reviews;
- Sharing experience on the functioning of CNCs, identifying and capitalising good practices ;
- Informing CNCs on COMIFAC’s key actions for 2013 and identifying areas in which they can provide support;
- Defining, in a concerted manner and taking into account the means available to each CNC for 2013, monitoring mechanisms and tools to be used by CNCs and training them in the use thereof;
- Outlining the development and implementation of information collection and sharing mechanisms, and modalities for assisting CNCs in this development process.
The training which lasted four days focused on four main points and attracted 29 participants, notably CNC representatives, COMIFAC Executive Secretariat, GIZ and GFA.
- 1. Opening ceremony :
This ceremony was marked by three opening addresses presented by:
Mr. Raymond MBITIKON, the COMIFAC Executive Secretary who, welcomed participants and thanked the representative of COMIFAC President for showing up, and went on to describe the context justifying the organisation of the meeting, which aimed to strengthen collaboration between COMIFAC and CNCs. Next after him was Mr. Matthew Victor CASSETTA in his capacity as CBFP facilitator, who highlighted the pivotal role played by CNCs in the implementation of COMIFAC’s convergence plan. He pointed out in his address that the United States’ vision, in its new role as facilitator, is to encourage African leadership to tackle critical threats… in the face of great conservation challenges, through capacity building, governance and inclusion of tomorrow’s leaders, youths, women and indigenous peoples. Lastly, the representative of the COMIFAC president, the Chadian Minister of Pastoral Development and Animal Production, H.E Mr. Amir ADOUDOU ARTINE, began by handing an elephant statuette to the new CBFP facilitator in a gesture that symbolises the passing of the baton for the task ahead of him in the Congo Basin forests. He then addressed the participants, welcoming them to the cradle of humanity and inviting them to the tree-planting ceremony in N’djamena’s Ceinture Verte [Green Belt].
The end of these addresses ushered participants into the second phase of the workshop which was the training session.
- 2. The training proper.
This part of the workshop was facilitated by the consultant, Mr. Mamy RABOANARIJAONA, who also played the role of trainer. The methodology he used in facilitating the workshop was the participatory approach based on presentations, group work and restitutions in plenary sessions.
Before proceeding with the different modules, participants presented their expectations, including the following main concerns:
- Ownership of tools for better visibility of COMIFAC ;
- A common understanding of planning and monitoring rationale ;
- Mastery of the use of monitoring-evaluation tools for adequate implementation of AWPs ;
- Transforming CNCs into genuine relay points of the COMIFAC Executive Secretariat;
- Providing CNCs with the requisite material and financial resources to make them more vibrant;
- Providing CNCs with technical capacities for financial resource mobilization and forging of partnerships.
In answer to the expectations expressed, participants were privileged to be drilled in the following modules:
Module 1 – Consolidating COMIFAC knowledge and culture
The idea here was to recall the vision, missions and objectives of COMIFAC, the 2013 – 2014 two-year action plan of the COMIFAC Executive Secretariat, adopted in November 2012 by the Council of Ministers, with the aim of ensuring implementation of decisions of governing bodies, monitoring-evaluation and co-ordination of the implementation of the Convergence Plan. This reminder was intended to harmonise participants’ knowledge of the functioning of COMIFAC.
This was followed by a presentation on the progress status of COMIFAC’s AWP and CNCs. Mr. Valery TCHUANTE, COMIFAC’s monitoring-evaluation expert, underscored the fact that 33% of expected results for 2013 were attained and the expected level of implementation as at June 2013 stood at 50%.
These presentations allowed participants to engage in group discussions where they highlighted the different linkages between AWP components of CNCs and COMIFAC’s objectives/missions, as well as the Executive Secretariat’s AWP 2013.
Module 2: Mid-term review of implementation CNCs’ AWP 2013
This module was facilitated by Ms. Danielle Fouth, Technical Adviser for GIZ’s COMIFAC support project. Her presentation centred on the monitoring chart, a tool used in monitoring implementation of AWPs.
Using a practical approach, she described the tool and defined key concepts and the structure of the monitoring chart which helps to evaluate the level of implementation of activities of each intervention axes linked to various components, thereby ensuring real-time monitoring of AWP implementation.
The ensuing debates enabled participants to get clarifications on some issues and ushered participants into group work centred on a common understanding of the monitoring-evaluation tool and of AWP CNC components assigned to the team.
Module 3: Monitoring-evaluation and programming: Overall framework of COMIFAC activities
Unlike previous modules, this one focused on experience-sharing which enabled participants to highlight the basis of and relationship between COMIFAC’s vision and missions, expected outcomes of the Convergence Plan and the CNCs’ missions. After this experience-sharing session, a presentation by Mr. François BUSSON (GFA/GIZ expert) on redefining the technical framework came to end this module.
Module 4: Monitoring-evaluation and programming: Results chain
This module began with group discussions which focused on identifying the major orientations of CNCs for 2014. The group work was followed by a presentation of the concept of the Results chain in the area of Results-driven management. Different tiers of results were identified, namely: outputs as short-term results, effects as mid-term results and impacts which are long term results. All these different result levels are tied to available resources and implementation of activities defined under AWPs.
Having understood the results chain concept, participants were able, in their various groups, to carry out an exercise on the result chain of CNC’s AWP drawing on COMIFAC’s missions and the results of the Convergence Plan, on identification of activities to be planned for each result expected of each of the components, determination of various performance indicators and identification of difficulties encountered.
The end of this module was marked by two presentations on the AWP matrix format and the draft AWP 2014 for each CNC.
Module 5: Review of the Convergence Plan and Development of the Regional Atlas
The first part of this module was facilitated by H.E Adjoint Monsieur Martin TADOUM, with discussions centred on the consultant recruitment process and on the approximate timing the review process. The second part dealt with the development of the regional atlas, which should afford COMIFAC greater efficiency in the discharge its missions. This process is already in phase 2, which is the implementation phase.
Module 6: Updating the road map 2013: Action plan and monitoring system
This module allowed participants to finalise the 2013 road map for each CNC and the outline of the quarterly report as well as that of the draft AWP for each of the CNCs. Meanwhile some strategic orientations were given to certain countries to improve on their road maps. These countries are: Cameroon, Gabon, Burundi, CAR, and DRC.
- 3. Recommendations and closing ceremony
At the end of this training session on monitoring-evaluation, recommendations formulated extended beyond the results of this workshop and addressed issues raised in various reports and studies on COMIFAC. These recommendations were concerned with the strategic, organisational and/or operational domains.
The closing ceremony witnessed the handing of attestations to participants, a word of thanks from the Executive Secretary of COMIFAC, and a closing address by Ms Nenodji MADINGAR, Secretary General of the Chadian Ministry of Environment and Fishery Resources.
- 4. Tree-planting ceremony
It was organised by the COMIFAC Executive Secretariat with the support of GIZ and JICA and chaired by His Excellency Mr. MAHAMAT ISSA HALIKIMI, the Chadian Minister of Environment and Fishery Resources, who doubles as Acting President of COMIFAC. In attendance at this ceremony were CNC representatives, GTBAC members, the Executive Secretariat and the media for the planting of about three hundred trees on sites of the Ceinture Verte on the outskirts of N’Djamena.
With these activities the participants parted, marking the end of the workshop which created a vibrant team spirit to meet the challenges awaiting COMIFAC both at the regional level and at the level of various countries.
Please download the Workshop's Report: