ADVANCING EQUALITY, TOLERANCE AND PEACE:  EQUAL RIGHTS AND TREATEMENT FOR ROMA

Project description
(as adopted in December 2005)

I. THE PROJECT
1. Description

1.1 Title of Project

Advancing Equalmity, Tolerance and Peace: Equal Rights and treatement for Roma in South East Europe

1.1.a Priority theme(s) addressed:
• Promotion of participative monitoring and evaluation of national programmes and action plans for Roma;
• Enhance the capacity of government and Roma to participate together in the effective monitoring and evaluation of the National Strategies for Roma;
• Exchange of good practices and lessons learnt from substantial monitoring and evaluations of national programmes/policies for Roma throughout Europe;
• Promote effective feedback and speedy practical responses to the lessons learned during monitoring through a shared ownership of success;
• Integration of European standards in the implementation and monitoring of national programmes/action plans for Roma;
• Empowerment of Roma project managers and Roma young leaders (with special focus on women);
• Development of a pool of (Roma) trainers on monitoring and evaluation, on media campaigns and awareness-raising;
• Promotion of inter-cultural dialogue and inter-ethnic understanding about Romani cultural features and traditions on the one hand, and expectations from the majority society on the other hand;
• Development of synergies between the work under this project and that of other international bodies and initiatives (OSCE-ODIHR, European Commission, World Bank and OSI Decade for Roma Inclusion, UNDP, etc.).
• Transparency and visibility of national programmes/action plans for Roma;
• Awareness-raising of specific needs of Roma among the majority population;
• Evaluation of the two previous Joint Programmes and mid-term and final evaluation of the current one.

1.1.b Target Group

The ultimate beneficiaries of this project are Roma communities of South East Europe. The direct beneficiaries of this project are:

a) the members of the Inter-ministerial commissions responsible for the implementation of the national programmes for Roma (components 1 and 2);
b) the local authorities (component 2 and possibly component 1 in countries where they are part of the Inter-ministerial commissions);
c) state institutions such as local employment offices, schools, police academies, social welfare offices, hospitals (component 2);
d) Roma project managers (components 1 and 2);
e) Council of Europe/European Commission/OSCE-ODIHR (component 3).


1.2 Location of activities

Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Montenegro, and “the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia”. The project activities will be divided and adapted country by country according to the needs and the interest of target groups.

They will be carried out inside and outside capitals to involve local authorities and local organisations. A number of multilateral activities will be carried out in the country chairing the Decade for Roma Inclusion.

1.3 Summary

The project is aimed at the development of participative monitoring and evaluation mechanisms and of the visibility of national programmes/action plans for Roma in South East Europe. The ultimate beneficiaries of this project are the Roma communities of South East Europe.

Component 1: Aim: Improvement of participative monitoring and evaluation methodology ; Target groups: the members of the Inter-ministerial commissions responsible for the implementation of national programmes for Roma, and members of commissions in charge of the implementation of Roma Decade Action Plans, Roma project managers; Main activities: launching and needs assessment seminars on monitoring and evaluation, training and mentoring, trainers’ training, publication and translation of guidelines.

Component 2 : Aim: Ensuring transparency and visibility of national programmes/action plans for Roma through improved communication channels and awareness-raising campaigns Target groups: State and local authorities, members of national parliaments, state institutions such as local employment offices, schools, police academies, social welfare offices etc, national and local media, the society at large. Main activities: setting-up of an awareness-raising campaign internet site, video competition, promotion of school and other civil society projects combating prejudices and negative stereotypes against Roma, VIP testimonials, campaign posters and videos against discrimination, festivals (film, music, youth).

Component 3: Aim: Evaluation of the two previous joint programmes for Roma and mid-term and final evaluation of the third one Target groups: Council of Europe/European Commission/OSCE-ODIHR (partner institutions in developing these programmes on Roma in South East Europe). Main activities: external evaluation through consultation of the main actors (partners and beneficiaries of the two previous joint programmes) and monitoring of the third throughout its implementation.

The project will ensure sustainability of the two previous projects and contribute to a regional exchange of experiences. The project will be implemented in close cooperation with other international actors, involving inter alia EC delegations, OSCE field missions and Council of Europe field offices, and taking into account existing initiatives (Decade for Roma Inclusion 2005-2015).


1.4 Objectives

The overall objective of the project is to promote tools for the efficient implementation of National Strategies for Roma in South East Europe. The implementation of the previous two joint projects, as well as various multilateral activities org anised by the Council of Europe (European Conference on Policies towards Roma, Gypsies and Travellers, Granada, Spain, May 2003; Brainstorming Seminar on Monitoring and Evaluation Methodology of National Programmes/Strategies for Roma or Travellers, Strasbourg, September 2004) showed a need for improving the monitoring and evaluation capacity of governmental action.

The specific objectives are:

1. to ensure that by the end of this two-year project, interministerial commissions in charge of the implementation of national programmes for Roma or Roma OSCE and/or Roma Decade Action Plans have improved their monitoring mechanism and have made it more participative.

2. to ensure transparency and visibility of governmental action through improved communication channels and promote a better image of Roma through an awareness-raising campaign and a range of activities or through the support of projects aimed at improving intercultural dialogue and inter-ethnic understanding.

3. to provide an independent assessment of the impact and results of the previous two joint CoE/EC/OSCE-ODIHR programmes “Roma under Stability Pact” and to contribute to the mid-term and final evaluation of the third one.

It is hoped that - as a side effect - this project will ultimately help governments in reporting to international monitoring bodies/mechanisms (Council of Europe Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities, ECRI, ICERD, OSCE Action Plan on Roma and Sinti, Roma Decade, etc.), thus ensuring sustainability of this project, creating synergies to reduce the burden on the governments and making their reporting duty much easier.


1.5 Justification


(a) identification of perceived needs and constraints in the target countries

The implementation of the previous two joint projects in the region highlighted:

  1. the lack of monitoring of targeted policies for Roma adopted by the majority of the countries in the region. Governments and local authorities should be the real actors for monitoring and evaluating their own action along with well-defined (selected) representatives of the communities concerned. For this purpose there is a need for creating the adequate structures and legislative framework.

  2. Poor perception by the local authorities, national parliaments and the general population as to the reasons behind both targeted and mainstreamed policies. There is also a need for dialogue and information on the implementation of such policies.

To satisfy both needs the Project will, through training, advice and communication strategies for implementing standards and good policies, provide the expertise and the appropriate monitoring, evaluation and communication skills and tools requested by the governments during the consultation process which took place at the end of the previous project.

The Council of Europe had organised – in partnership with INTRAC, a UK-based non-governmental organisation - a Brainstorming Seminar on Monitoring and Evaluation Methodology of National Programmes/Strategies for Roma or Travellers in Strasbourg in September 2004. This Seminar was attended by governmental officials and Roma representatives from member states having adopted a national programme for Roma or which are in the process of doing so, including the countries of this new joint programme. The European Commission (EQUAL) was also present, as were other international partners (UNDP, OSCE-ODIHR). This Seminar highlighted the needs and helped in identifying concrete activities. Most of the proposed activities have been included in the present project description.

In addition, the Council of Europe Roma and Travellers Division also circulated earlier this year a letter to all official partners of the Joint Programme Roma II informing them about the intention to carry out a third joint programme and describing the three envisaged components. We received a clear expression of interest from all countries which are included in the present project proposal.

(b) reason for addressing the situation

The Council of Europe Seminar on “Monitoring and Evaluation Methodology of National Programmes/Strategies for Roma and Traveller” held in September 2004 in Strasbourg, showed that the social and economic situation of the Roma population has not significantly improved, despite a range of new project programmes and strategies developed and funded by governmental and inter governmental donors, moreover that monitoring and evaluation are very often overlooked in the design and implementation of such strategies.

Many programmes have some form of monitoring and evaluation system in place. Although monitoring is carried out in several programmes, much of this monitoring is inappropriate. The concern is that these systems are not adequate to reach a deep understanding of the social processes, which bring about change (for example, the shifts in power, and changes in attitude). The very minimum requirement to achieve this level of understanding is that the monitoring and evaluation system must be participatory. It must also include independent experienced programme evaluators at various stages. Unfortunately, in most cases the level of participation of the monitoring and evaluation systems has tended to follow the low standard set in the planning and implementation of the minority programme.

The previous two Joint Projects assisted the participating countries in the process of drafting, adopting and implementing the National Strategies. It was acknowledged that very often deep-rooted prejudices and discrimination practices among the local authorities and the local population are one of the main factors of the implementation failure. Awareness-raising campaigns should target governmental authorities and particularly regional and local authorities and the general population to bring about a better understanding of the particular situation of the Roma. The general population should be made to understand the need for targeted actions in order to achieve a radical change of the situation of the Roma.

The introduction in Component 3 of the evaluation of the two previous joint programmes and mid-term and final evaluation of the present project will not only respond to a request from the European Commission and Council of Europe auditing offices, but will also show the right example to the partners of the present project. This is a reason why the evaluation was not considered as a separate item but was incorporated in the project itself.

(c) list of target groups with an estimate of the anticipated number of direct and indirect beneficiaries

• Members of the inter-ministerial commissions responsible for the implementation of the national programmes for Roma (14 persons per country in average – direct beneficiaries);
• Local authorities (from 5 to 10 local authorities per country - direct beneficiaries);
• State institutions such as local employment offices, schools, police academies, social welfare offices, hospitals (about 5 per country - direct beneficiaries);
• Members of national parliaments (direct beneficiaries for certain regional activities and invited as observers for others; it is hoped that national authorities and/or the OSCE-ODIHR could finance their participation);
• National and local media (from 5 to 10 per country – direct beneficiaries);
• Roma project managers (from 3 to 10 per country – direct beneficiaries);
• Council of Europe/European Commission/OSCE-ODIHR (direct beneficiaries of Component 3).

One of the indicators of success of this project will be the transmission of information from direct beneficiaries (state and local officials, representatives from local institutions, journalists, Roma project managers, etc.) to non direct beneficiaries (colleagues, similar institutions, other localities, other Roma NGOs, etc.). A source of verification would be for instance training sessions on monitoring and evaluation organised by the local trainers who will have been trained during this programme. It is hoped that other international partners (OSCE-ODIHR, World Bank, OSI, etc.) will use the format of this project to organise similar activities.

(d) reasons for the selection of the target groups and activities

The target groups selected are involved in the design, adoption and implementation process of the National Strategies for Roma and responsible for the implementation of the Joint Programmes on Roma in South East Europe. They are also relevant for any communication strategy about national Roma policies. The proposed activities answer the needs identified by the target groups themselves.

(e) relevance of the project to the target groups

The third Joint Programme on Roma could have a considerable impact on members of the mentioned target groups. The Project will provide all participants involved with knowledge on monitoring and evaluation of the national strategies for Roma and will help them to face challenges of their implementation and reporting.

All target groups will feel the impact of the project either as co-organisers of meetings and training, as beneficiaries of the training courses or as policy makers who will develop the outreach, dissemination of the experience and skills of the project.

(f) reasons for the role of each partner (where applicable)

By acting in partnership, the European Commission, the Council of Europe, the OSCE-ODIHR, including EC delegations and OSCE and CoE field missions, allow beneficiaries to better understand European standards and practices. This joint partnership clarifies the inter-relationship and mutual dependence of all issues regarding integration into a wider European political and cultural space for the beneficiaries and target groups. The active participation of official and non-governmental partners is clearly a prerequisite for the successful implementation of the project.

(g) relevance of the project to promoting (a) gender equality (b) the rights of children

Both the promotion of the gender equality and the protection of the rights of the children will constitute monitoring and evaluation indicators of the implementation of the National Strategies for Roma in member states. Gender equality and participation of Roma youth will also be indicators of the assessment of the joint programmes themselves.


 

1.6  Detailed description of activities

Component I: Improvement of participative monitoring and evaluation technology
 

ALBANIA

I.1.1 Launching Seminar on Monitoring and Evaluation in Albania
Venue and duration: Tirana, 2 days.
Objective: Presentation of the project components and initial plans, as well as the project team (including consultants); needs assessment with various members of the inter-ministerial commission (state and local authorities, Roma NGOs).
Maximum number of participants: 25

I.1.2 Training and mentoring on monitoring and evaluation methodology
Venue and duration: Elbasan, 2 days
Objective: To support members of the inter-ministerial commission providing them with the expertise and understanding of how to manage evaluations and the methods for participatory monitoring and reporting on strategies. This will recognise the need for a regional monitoring approach and the need to monitor the implementation of international Conventions that relate to Roma (e.g. the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities of the Council of Europe). The support will be offered through a workshop involving training, mentoring and problem solving sessions (inter alia). A special focus will be given to the role of local actors in the monitoring process.
Maximum number of participants: 25

I.1.3 Second Training and mentoring on monitoring and evaluation methodology
Venue and duration: Tirana, 2 days
Objective: To support members of the inter-ministerial commission providing them with the expertise and understanding of how to manage evaluations and the methods for participatory monitoring and reporting on strategies. This will recognise the need for a regional monitoring approach and the need to monitor the implementation of international Conventions that relate to Roma (e.g. the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities of the Council of Europe). The support will be offered through a workshop involving training, mentoring and problem solving sessions (inter alia). A special focus will be given to the role of local actors in the monitoring process.
Maximum number of participants: 25


I.1.4 Trainers’ training on monitoring and evaluation methodology
Venue and duration: Tirana, 2 days.
Objective: To train selected, relevant trainers from governmental institutions and Roma organisations with the expertise and the appropriate monitoring, evaluation and communication tools, to train and support colleagues in participatory monitoring and in the evaluation of Roma projects and programmes. This will recognise the need for a regional monitoring approach (re. Decade for Roma Inclusion) and the need to monitor the implementation of international Conventions that relate to Roma (e.g. the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities of the Council of Europe).
Maximum number of participants: 8

 

BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA

I.2.1 Launching Seminar on Monitoring and Evaluation in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Venue and duration: Sarajevo, 2 days.
Objective: Presentation of the project components and initial plans, as well as the project team (including consultants); needs assessment with various members of the inter-ministerial commission (state and local authorities, Roma NGOs).
Maximum number of participants: 25

I.2.2 Training and mentoring on monitoring and evaluation methodology
Venue and duration: Mostar, 2 days
Objective: To support members of the inter-ministerial commission providing them with the expertise and understanding of how to manage evaluations and the methods for participatory monitoring and reporting on strategies. This will recognise the need for a regional monitoring approach and the need to monitor the implementation of international Conventions that relate to Roma (e.g. the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities of the Council of Europe). The support will be offered through a workshop involving training, mentoring and problem solving sessions (inter alia). A special focus will be given to the role of local actors in the monitoring process.
Maximum number of participants: 25

I.2.3 Trainers’ training on monitoring and evaluation methodology
Venue and duration: Sarayevo, 2 days.
Objective: To train selected, relevant trainers from governmental institutions and Roma organisations with the expertise and the appropriate monitoring, evaluation and communication tools, to train and support colleagues in participatory monitoring and in the evaluation of Roma projects and programmes. This will recognise the need for a regional monitoring approach (re. Decade for Roma Inclusion) and the need to monitor the implementation of international Conventions that relate to Roma (e.g. the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities of the Council of Europe).
Maximum number of participants: 8



SERBIA AND MONTENEGRO

I.3.1 Launching Seminar on Monitoring and Evaluation in Serbia (Serbia and Montenegro)
Venue and duration: Belgrade, 2 days.
Objective: Presentation of the project components and initial plans, as well as the project team (including consultants); needs assessment with various members of the inter-ministerial commission (state and local authorities, Roma NGOs), including persons working on Roma Decade Action Plans.
Maximum number of participants: 30

I.3.2 Launching Seminar on Monitoring and Evaluation in Montenegro (Serbia and Montenegro)
Venue and duration: Podgorica, 2 days.
Objective: Presentation of the project components and initial plans, as well as the project team (including consultants); needs assessment with various members of the inter-ministerial commission (state and local authorities, Roma NGOs), including persons working on Roma Decade Action Plans.
Maximum number of participants: 30

I.3.3 Training and mentoring on monitoring and evaluation methodology
Venue and duration: Vojvodina (Serbia), 2 days
Objective: To support members of the inter-ministerial commission providing them with the expertise and understanding of how to manage evaluations and the methods for participatory monitoring and reporting on strategies. This will recognise the need for a regional monitoring approach (re. Decade for Roma Inclusion) and the need to monitor the implementation of international Conventions that relate to Roma (e.g. the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities of the Council of Europe). The support will be offered through a workshop involving training, mentoring and problem solving sessions (inter alia). A special focus will be given to the role of local actors in the monitoring process.
Maximum number of participants: 25


I.3.4 Second Training and mentoring on monitoring and evaluation methodology
Venue and duration: Budva (Montenegro), 2 days
Objective: To support members of the inter-ministerial commission providing them with the expertise and understanding of how to manage evaluations and the methods for participatory monitoring and reporting on strategies. This will recognise the need for a regional monitoring approach (re. Decade for Roma Inclusion) and the need to monitor the implementation of international Conventions that relate to Roma (e.g. the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities of the Council of Europe). The support will be offered through a workshop involving training, mentoring and problem solving sessions (inter alia). A special focus will be given to the role of local actors in the monitoring process.
Maximum number of participants: 25

I.3.5 Trainers’ training on monitoring and evaluation methodology
Venue and duration: Belgrade, 2 days
Objective: To train selected, relevant trainers from governmental institutions and Roma organisations with the expertise and the appropriate monitoring, evaluation and communication tools, to train and support colleagues in participatory monitoring and in the evaluation of Roma projects and programmes. This will recognise the need for a regional monitoring approach (re. Decade for Roma Inclusion) and the need to monitor the implementation of international Conventions that relate to Roma (e.g. the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities of the Council of Europe).
Maximum number of participants: 8


“THE FORMER YUGOSLAV REPUBLIC OF MACEDONIA”

I.4.1 Launching Seminar on Monitoring and Evaluation in “the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia”
Venue and duration: Skopje, 2 days.
Objective: Presentation of the project components and initial plans, as well as the project team (including consultants); needs assessment with various members of the inter-ministerial commission (state and local authorities, Roma NGOs), including persons working on Roma Decade Action Plans.
Maximum number of participants: 30


I.4.2 Training and mentoring on monitoring and evaluation methodology
Venue and duration: Bitola, 2 days
Objective: To support members of the inter-ministerial commission providing them with the expertise and understanding of how to manage evaluations and the methods for participatory monitoring and reporting on strategies. This will recognise the need for a regional monitoring approach (re. Decade for Roma Inclusion) and the need to monitor the implementation of international Conventions that relate to Roma (e.g. the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities of the Council of Europe). The support will be offered through a workshop involving training, mentoring and problem solving sessions (inter alia). A special focus will be given to the role of local actors in the monitoring process.
Maximum number of participants: 25

I.4.3 Second Training and mentoring on monitoring and evaluation methodology
Venue and duration: Ohrid, 2 days
Objective: To support members of the inter-ministerial commission providing them with the expertise and understanding of how to manage evaluations and the methods for participatory monitoring and reporting on strategies. This will recognise the need for a regional monitoring approach (re. Decade for Roma Inclusion) and the need to monitor the implementation of international Conventions that relate to Roma (e.g. the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities of the Council of Europe). The support will be offered through a workshop involving training, mentoring and problem solving sessions (inter alia). A special focus will be given to the role of local actors in the monitoring process.
Maximum number of participants: 25

I.4.4 Trainers’ training on monitoring and evaluation methodology
Venue and duration: Skopje, 2 days
Objective: To train selected, relevant trainers from governmental institutions and Roma organisations with the expertise and the appropriate monitoring, evaluation and communication tools, to train and support colleagues in participatory monitoring and in the evaluation of Roma projects and programmes. This will recognise the need for a regional monitoring approach (re. Decade for Roma Inclusion) and the need to monitor the implementation of international Conventions that relate to Roma (e.g. the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities of the Council of Europe).
Maximum number of participants: 8

 

TRANSLATION AND PUBLICATION

I.5 Translation and publication of a Practical Guide to Monitoring and Evaluation
Objective: to provide members of the interministerial commissions and trainees with a useful guidebook, including masks for monitoring exercises. The Guide may be translated into Albanian, Macedonian, Romani and Serbian.



COMPONENT II: TRANSPARENCY AND VISIBILITY

II.1 Multi-language Internet site for the awareness-raising campaign on Roma culture and tolerance
Venue and duration: Strasbourg, two years.
Objective: Creation of a multi-language internet site as a platform for the promotion of all the awareness-raising campaign components and material from Component 1. Material should include news on central and decentralised activities; forum discussion; background texts; statements made by good-will ambassadors and testimonials; downloadable visual material.

II.2 Video competition for combating anti-Roma stereotypes
Venue and duration: South East Europe, activity running until June 2007.
Objective: Through an open competition, art academies/schools, artists and agencies in the participating countries are invited to produce a 3-minute video promoting the basic campaign message(s). Cooperation partners will be local and regional broadcasters, one of whom will organise a highly visible prize-giving ceremony (for instance in the country having the Roma Decade Presidency). The jury will be composed of journalists, broadcasters, Council of Europe and European Commission representatives and representatives of Roma associations, including the European Roma and Travellers Forum. The winning productions will be aired free of charge by participating TV stations and used by the Council of Europe and its partners.

II.3 Promotion of school and civil society projects to combat stereotypes against Roma
Venue and duration: South East Europe, Year 1 and 2.
Objective: In cooperation with national/local school authorities, the Council of Europe (DG3 Social Cohesion in co-operation with DG2 ECRI and DGIV Education) will initiate a school contest in participating countries, supporting the best individual or collective project dealing with stereotypes against Roma. First prizes to be given at national level, through wide-based juries. Summaries will be made available (as examples of good practice) through the campaign web site. In addition, the Council of Europe will invite civil society organisations in participating countries to implement and document projects fighting prejudice and discrimination against Roma in sectors of daily life. Selected projects will be documented on the campaign web site and via press releases as examples of good practice and receive Council of Europe recognition. The jury will consist of Council of Europe staff, European Commission Delegations’ staff, staff from other international partners, national experts (relevant authorities) and representatives of Roma associations, including the European Roma and Travellers Forum (ERTF).

II.4 VIP testimonials supporting Roma culture and fighting against discrimination and prejudices
Venue and duration: South East Europe, Year 1 and 2
Objective: The Council of Europe will invite personalities with popular mass appeal and recognition (pop artists, sports people, politicians, scientists etc.) to provide (or endorse) quotes against discrimination and prejudices against Roma. The testimonials are provided free of charge to televisions, newspapers and magazines in participating countries. Their statements or videos will be published on the campaign website.

II.5 Campaign posters and videos against discrimination and prejudices
Venue and duration: South East Europe, Year 1 and 2
Objective: The Council of Europe will produce campaign posters, with the cooperation of good-willing ambassadors reflecting the cultural and socio-political messages of the awareness-raising campaign. A 30-second video presenting 10 Roma from different countries and different backgrounds in their workplace will be produced and distributed free of charge to national television stations to show that Roma have rights and aspirations like everybody else and that societies will gain by respecting these rights and aspirations.

II.6 Festival “Art and Youth against discrimination”
Venue and duration: South East Europe, June 2007.
Objective: Together with the EU MEDIA programme and the Forum of European Roma Young People (FERYP), the Council of Europe DG3 Social Cohesion, in co-operation with Eurimages and DG4 Youth Directorate, will encourage a limited number of partners to stage a film, music, youth festival. Films on the life situation of Roma but also audiovisual support material produced during the campaign will be shown. Young Roma music groups will be invited to act on the stage together with well-known Roma artists and non-Roma artists engaged against discrimination. The festival will also include a handcrafts laboratory and a photograph exhibition on the integration of Roma. This activity will be a follow-up of the “all different – all equal” campaign launched by the Council of Europe. It might be financed through several sources.

II.7 Regional Seminar on Roma Culture and Traditions for monitors and journalists
Venue and duration: South East Europe, December 2006.
2 days.
Objective: Presentation by Roma experts of Roma cultural features and traditions to be taken into account when implementing and monitoring Roma national strategies or Roma Action Plans. Participants will be inter alia persons involved in monitoring programmes/action plans and local authorities/institutions. A session will be also devoted to ways at improving the image of Roma within the majority society and through the media. This activity will have a clear link with Component I “monitoring and evaluation” both in terms of objectives and partners.
Maximum number of participants: 40 (5 participants from 7 countries, including people involved in monitoring Roma policies, local authorities/institutions and journalists, 2 international experts, 1 Secretariat, 2 interpreters). Observers will participate at their own costs.


COMPONENT III: EVALUATION

III.1 Independent external evaluation of Joint EC/CoE Programmes on Roma
Duration: two years.
Objective: Evaluation of the two previous Joint European Commission/Council of Europe/OSCE-ODIHR programmes on Roma in South East Europe .

III.2.1 Evaluators’ visits to target groups and beneficiaries in South East Europe
Venue and duration: South East Europe, February-June 2006.
Objective: Consultants’ visits to countries of South East Europe which have been beneficiaries of previous joint programmes between the European Commission and the Council of Europe on Roma (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Serbia and Montenegro, and “the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia”).

III.2.2 Evaluator’s visit to OSCE-ODIHR on previous joint programmes on Roma
Venue and duration: Warsaw, Poland, 2 days, June 2006.
Objective: Consultant’s visit to the OSCE-ODIHR Contact Point on Roma and Sinti Issues (CPRSI) to evaluate the cooperation between the OSCE-ODIHR and the Council of Europe in the design and implementation of the two previous joint EC/CoE programmes on Roma, as well as in terms of input and outcome for the respective organisations/institutions, for the target groups and beneficiaries.

III.2.3 Evaluator’s visit to the European Commission on previous and current joint programmes on Roma
Venue and duration: Brussels, Belgium, 2 days, June 2006.
Objective: Consultant’s visit to the European Commission to evaluate the cooperation between the European Commission and the Council of Europe in the design and implementation of the two previous joint EC/CoE programmes on Roma, as well as in terms of input and outcome for the respective organisations/institutions, for the target groups and beneficiaries.

III.2.4 Evaluators’ visit to the Council of Europe on previous and current joint programmes on Roma
Venue and duration: Strasbourg, France, 2 days, September 2006.
Objective: Consultants’ visit to the Council of Europe to evaluate the cooperation between the Council of Europe and the European Commission and OSCE-ODIHR (including EC delegations and OSCE field missions) in the design and implementation of the two previous joint EC/CoE programmes on Roma, as well as in terms of input and outcome for the respective organisations/institutions, for the target groups and beneficiaries.

III.3 Mid-term Evaluation Workshop of the Third Joint EC/CoE Programme on Roma
Venue and duration: Strasbourg, France, 2 days, January 2007.
Objective: Consultants will organise a two-day mid-term evaluation workshop to help the Council of Europe staff in assessing the impact of the project after one year and preparing the interim progress report to the European Commission. Another such workshop might be organised at the end of the project, pending funds available.
 

 

1.7 Methodology


(a) methods of implementation

The project will follow essentially three methods of implementation:

A. Training sessions
• Training and monitoring sessions with a view to improving the monitoring and evaluation capacity of members of inter-ministerial commissions made up of government officials, Roma representatives and any other actors (local authorities, Roma project managers).
• Training of trainers involving key persons in the Government and Roma NGOs with a view to developing skills in delivering monitoring and evaluation training.
• Development of training programmes and materials alongside local capacity building.

B. Regional seminars
• Regional Seminar with journalists and monitors on the specific features of the Roma culture and traditions aimed at facilitating inter-ethnic dialogue and a better understanding of possible levers for the implementation of national programmes for Roma.

C. Awareness-raising campaign
• Development of an awareness-raising campaign on combating negative stereotypes and promoting tolerance focusing on target groups able to multiply the message, e.g. local authorities and media (promotion of school and civil society projects, VIP testimonials, campaign posters).
• Prize-giving ceremonies (video competition, art and music festival).

D. Consultancy
• Consultants on monitoring and evaluation (components 1 and 3) and consultants on communication and art work design (component 2) will be recruited for this project.

(b) reasons for the proposed methodology

Considerable skills and experience are offered by the institution's panel of experts (drawn from the 46 Member States of the Council of Europe, including the 25 EU Member States). All methods are devised so as to provide those working locally directly with the required skills and experience. The most important consideration that has determined the formulation of Council of Europe methodology is that of providing an interface between the needs of the beneficiary country on the one hand, and the possibilities of the Council of Europe to provide support and expertise on the other hand.

- Training sessions will allow members of the interministerial committees and Roma project managers to develop and to enhance their evaluation and monitoring capacities, as well as to institutionalize participative mechanisms between the relevant authorities and Roma NGOs;

- The Regional seminar will provide a forum to exchange views on policies for Roma, on communicating the need for targeted policies for Roma to the general public and Roma themselves, bearing in mind the specific cultural features and traditions of this community;

- The awareness-raising campaign, through its various sub-activities, will address different target groups (officials, local authorities, media, national parliaments, etc.) to combat negative stereotypes against Roma and will develop interethnic dialogue and mutual understanding;

- The evaluation exercise of previous and current joint programmes will ensure coherence and will be promoted as good practice.

(c) procedures for internal evaluation during the implementation

The monitoring of the project implementation will be carried out by the project manager in close consultation with an external evaluator. A mid-term evaluation of the Project (workshop) will take place at the end of Year 1 by an external evaluator (Component III). Another workshop might be organised at the end of the project, pending funds available under this project.

In addition, an independent evaluation of the two previous joint EC/CoE programmes on Roma will be conducted by independent local and international consultants. Evaluators will have the possibility of organising visits in South East Europe to facilitate their contacts with target groups and beneficiaries.

(d) level of involvement and activity of other organisations in the project (partners, sub-contractors or others)

Most activities in the Programme are run in partnership with a local partner (a State or government institution, i.e. a competent Ministry, an Office for Minorities, etc) or a professional or non-governmental organisation.

Training sessions will be organised in close consultation with other international governmental and non-governmental actors present in the region having an interest in monitoring national policies for Roma (EC delegations, OSCE missions, World Bank, UNDP and OSI as regards countries concerned by the Decade for Roma Inclusion 2005-2015). As for previous joint programmes, the Council of Europe will coordinate its action and activities with the OSCE-ODIHR to avoid overlaps and duplication.

Components 1 and 2 will require the assistance of international and local experts having expertise in monitoring and evaluation and in communication.

Component 3 will be carried out in partnership with independent local and international consultants, who will be recruited to conduct the evaluation of the two previous joint programmes and the mid-term evaluation of the present programme.

All actions promote the principle that co-operation is a collaborative common effort to reach common goals. Every effort is made to ensure full co-ordination of action between the Council of Europe and other international organisations and partners.

(e) team proposed for implementation of the project (by function: there is no need to include the names of individuals here)

The project management is carried out by the staff of the Council of Europe, Social Cohesion General Directorate. The managers concerned all have substantial expertise in the areas for which they are responsible and considerable experience of working both in the target countries and for joint EC/CoE programmes.

(f) added value, e.g. regarding innovative approaches and/or promotion of gender equality & equal opportunities

The new project will aim to promote the participation of Romani women and young Roma in the composition of mixed commissions in charge of the implementation of adopted national strategies. It is unrealistic to obtain a totally equal representation between Roma men and women at this stage but the Council of Europe will use the regional and mentoring networks of Roma women established by the OSCE-ODIHR in the framework of the previous joint programmes to increase the role of Roma women in the decision-making process. The Council of Europe will also – as it did in the previous programmes – recruit as consultants young Roma and Romani women.

(g) external evaluation mechanisms foreseen

The evaluation objectives are the following:

 

  • Evaluate the outcomes and impact of the two previous EC/CoE/OSCE-ODIHR Joint Programmes ‘Roma Under the Stability Pact’;

  • Assist with the mid-term evaluation and monitoring of the present Joint Programme;

  • Support the development of an ongoing monitoring process;

  • Identify lessons for Roma programming in South East Europe.

     

Evaluation Methodology

The precise tools/ methods to be used during the evaluation processes are to be decided upon by the evaluators. Data will be gathered, synthesised and feedback to stakeholders, facilitating stakeholder conclusions and positing and testing the conclusions with them. The evaluation process has been broadly divided into four interconnected phases – three phases for the evaluation process and one for the mid-term evaluation and monitoring system development and ongoing accompaniment. The activities associated with each of these phases are outlined below:

Phase One: Preparation (January 2006)

Two consultants will combine primary and secondary data collection in this preparation phase. The desk research will include an examination of relevant programme documents and a review of the current progress of national strategies in each of the target countries, plus analysis of other relevant secondary sources.

Primary data collection will include a survey to all stakeholders and semi-structured interviews with key informants. This process will support the identification of three projects/ programmes/ organisations for further in-depth field evaluation.

Phase Two: Field Visits (February-June 2006)

The evaluation process will incorporate up to eight in-depth field visits to sites identified in Phase One. These sites will be chosen on the basis of specific criteria agreed upon by stakeholders. Field visits will include a variety of data collection methods, such as focus groups, semi-structured interviews, review of monitoring information, etc.; and will target communities, organisations and government at local and national level.

Phase Three: Evaluation Report (April- September 2006)

This period will involve the collation and analysis of data gathered in Phase One and Two. A first draft will be submitted to the evaluators, CoE and key informants in mid-June, with a final paper submitted, after comment from stakeholders, at the end of September. The content of this synthesis of the evaluation findings will feed into the mid-term evaluation workshop to be convened by the Council of Europe and facilitated by the evaluators in January 2007.

Phase Four: Monitoring (April 06-Nov 07)

The findings and direction identified in Phase Three will help establish an appropriate monitoring system for the current Joint Programme, with clear and measurable indicators. Establishment of a system will develop alongside stakeholder practice, learning and reflection in each of the target country programmes, with appropriate indicators identified by consensus. In order to ensure the continued effective monitoring of the JP, it will be necessary to ‘fine-tune’ the monitoring process – this responsiveness to evolving context and programme activities will be ensured through quarterly visits and workshops and ongoing accompaniment support (to be funded through additional resources). This method of continued engagement aims to ensure that stakeholders’ capacity to monitor Roma programmes is built, whilst integrating into the other components of the strategy to develop the monitoring and communication tools of national programmes for Roma in South East Europe.


(h) if the proposal is to continue funding an existing project, how it builds on the achievements of the project

This proposed Joint Programme will ensure sustainability of the previous two joint EC/CoE/OSCE-ODIHR projects on Roma by promoting monitoring and evaluation mechanisms of already adopted (joint programme 1) and partially implemented (Joint programme II) national strategies for Roma. It will also help in developing a communication strategy for governments regarding their national programme and Roma Decade or OSCE Action Plans, as well as conducting an awareness-raising campaign, both issues having been identified as shortcomings under previous projects during a brainstorming seminar on monitoring and evaluation (Strasbourg, September 2004).
 

2. Expected results

2.1 Estimated impact on target groups / situation addressed


(a) how the project will improve the situation of the target groups (including women and children)

The project is designed to strengthen the monitoring and evaluation capacity of the institutional stakeholders and the Roma representatives involved in governmental policy action (national programmes for Roma, Roma Decade Action Plans, OSCE Action Plans, reporting to Council of Europe monitoring mechanisms on minorities’ protection and non-discrimination, etc.). Effective implementation of national strategies will have a direct impact on improving the socio-economic condition of Roma communities (women and children included) in the countries involved.
By involving and empowering Roma project managers and Roma involved in the monitoring of national programmes and action plans, the project will increase the effective participation of Roma in decision-making in the emerging democratic societies of the target countries.
The Project will also set up a network of local trained evaluators (women and young Roma included) in all target countries to offer advice and support and thus enable all stakeholders involved to monitor the progress and/or the obstacles on the implementation of national strategies at national and local level.
The Project will help in increasing a regional approach on Roma issues, thanks as well to the interlink between this project and the Decade for Roma Inclusion initiative. It will inter alia encourage officials and Roma in each country to structure a consensual approach on their needs and priority measures. It will also facilitate transborder contacts between various actors (authorities, Roma NGOs, media), both at state and local levels.
The project will promote equality and the rights of the Roma minority, including the rights of Roma women and children, in particular by enhancing cultural dialogue and mutual understanding (component 2).
The project (component 2) aims to increase visibility of official documents related to Roma policy in the countries concerned, as well as to improve the reporting on Roma issues in the media.

(b) how the project will have an impact on the situation it addresses

The Programme is focused particularly on enhancing the monitoring and evaluation skills of the target groups as regards the implementation of national strategies.


2.2 Publications and other material outputs


The creation of a multi-language internet website will promote all the awareness-raising campaign components and tools (video, TV spots, radio interviews, forum discussion, VIP testimonials, etc.) and will ensure the visibility and transparency of this project.

Written material (background documents, activity reports, recommendations, training summaries, consultants’ reports, and project evaluation reports) will be published on the Internet site to make them available to a larger public and firstly to all actors involved in this project.

Members of the interministerial commissions and trainees will be provided with a useful guidebook on monitoring and evaluation, as well as other training material. The Guide, may be translated into Albanian, Macedonian, Romani and Serbian. The original text and its translations will be available online.

Information regarding this project will be regularly made available to the public and to other international partners, via newsletters and general reports on Council of Europe Roma activities. The Council of Europe Roma Division website (http://www.coe.int/romatravellers) will be regularly updated with information about the project activities.


2.3 Multiplier effects


The project will promote models of good operational practices and monitoring/reporting methodologies which could be shared by other member states facing the same Roma policy implementation challenges, e.g. EU countries involved in the Decade for Roma Inclusion.

Target groups (officials, journalists, Roma project managers), who will have an opportunity to be trained in the framework of this project, will potentially train other colleagues.

The Internet website devoted to the awareness-raising campaign against negative stereotyping of Roma will most probably be interlinked with other relevant websites, extending the project outcomes and giving a chance to a larger public to access the project material.

2.4 Sustainability


(a) financial sustainability (Where relevant, how will the activities be financed after the proposed funding ends?)

Where training is provided for trainers, for example, the training institutions (be there independent or part of an institutional mechanism) will benefit from the experience and methodology proposed under this project and will incorporate them into their own training programmes, therefore ensuring a sustained financial support to the training activities.

Some of the proposed activities might become in future Roma specific components of more general activities (training, festival, video competition) organised by other local, national or international partners (these potential partners will be associated to the project activities to ensure financial sustainability).

(b) institutional sustainability (Will structures allowing the activities to continue be in place at the end of the present project? Will there be local “ownership” of project outcomes?)

The Council of Europe as an intergovernmental institution works in partnership with official institutions in the beneficiary Member State, often together with international partners (OSCE, EC, UNDP, World Bank, OSI, etc.) and local non-governmental organisations (Roma and non-Roma). The aim of all Council of Europe interventions is to encourage acceptance of European standards and practices as an everyday part of the work and functioning of officials and official structures, even contributing to the progressive reform of such structures.

Local ‘ownership’ of the project outcomes is ensured both by officials putting into practice their newly-acquired skills and knowledge and by the role played within society by informed non-governmental organisations.

A number of local partners (officials, Roma project managers) will be trained on monitoring and evaluation methodology to ensure that activities such as regular meetings of interministerial commissions will be continued at the end of the project.

As this is a project primarily to support the relevant authorities in the target country in finding solutions to problems within their own context, the local authorities will have the main responsibility for ensuring the sustainability of the results of the projects. However, the activities of this project will lay the foundations of network forming and institution building in the relevant areas.


(c) sustainability at the policy level (What will be the structural impact of the project – e.g. will it lead to improved legislation, codes of conduct, methods, etc?)

The assistance to target countries proposed in this Programme is a direct response to the obligations and commitments undertaken by these countries in the context of membership of the Council of Europe. Member States sign up upon accession (or commit themselves to signing and ratifying within a set deadline) to a series of legally binding instruments and are subject to possible monitoring within the Committee of Ministers, the Parliamentary Assembly, the monitoring system of the ESC – and ultimately through decisions of the European Court of Human Rights. The combination of a willingness to institute reform, the provision of concrete assistance to achieve reforms, and the pressure of possible measures if commitments are not honoured, provides a strong incentive for ensuring that improvements in legislation, codes of conduct and methods will occur.

The Council of Europe, in view of its long-standing experience in the field of policy-making on Roma issues and in co-operation with its partners (European Commission, OSCE-ODIHR), will contribute through this project to the improvement of minority legislation and to the monitoring and reporting methodology of the countries concerned.


3. Budget for the project

The budget is provided in Annex B (Excel file), Worksheet 1. Budget.

4. Expected sources of co-funding

The Council of Europe will provide co-funding for the Programme as indicated in Annex B (Excel file), Worksheet 2. Sources of Funding.

National and state authorities will be requested to contribute to the project (providing e.g. extra funding for participants where needed, providing a conference room or interpretation equipment, etc.).

This project has good potential for attracting other sources of funding from other international partners (World Bank, OSI, UNDP as regards activities related to the Decade for Roma Inclusion), or the OSCE-ODIHR (as regards inter alia the monitoring of OSCE action plan on Roma and Sinti). Additional funding could help increase the number of participants for planned activities or help the Council of Europe in co-organising similar activities in other places of South East Europe.

Additional support from other Council of Europe sectors (DG4 Education and Youth directorates, ECRI, the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, Eurimages, Communication and Press departments, the Media Division, the Secretariat of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities, etc.) is also envisaged (especially as regards Component 2).

The European Roma and Travellers Forum (ERTF) and its members will be involved in a number of activities of Component 2 and may play a role by giving its opinion regarding previous joint programmes under Component 3. The ERTF will also be part of the juries for the video competition or other prize-giving ceremonies for projects combating stereotypes against Roma. Through its own budget, the ERTF might complement some of the activities of the present project.


Last update: 5 December 2005