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Understanding resilience | FAO OED

The FAO Office of Evaluation intended to use SenseMaker as part of their programmatic evaluation of FAO’s contributions in building resilience after tropical cyclones Idai and Kenneth hit Southern Africa in 2019.

Voices That Count was made responsible for a narrative-based component of their evaluation with the overall objectives of a) providing an account of FAO’s contributions to building resilience after the cyclones and, b) identifying lessons that can strengthen FAO’s structures, mechanisms and capacities to support preparedness, response and recovery in Zimbabwe and Mozambique.

We designed the process including the sampling strategy and tested the framework in the field. For this assignment, we developed a specific SenseMaker framework for the two countries (English and Portuguese). We conducted trainings to support and strengthen the evaluation team in the story collection at field level. Lastly, we produced a pattern and story analysis report for use as part of the broader evaluation.

Through the narratives it was possible to assess the relevance and effectiveness of selected FAO interventions in terms of resilience building as well as possible impacts on livelihoods. The method enabled the gathering and analysing of large amounts of experiences from the affected communities, shifting the power of interpretation to the respondents, away from the evaluators. It allowed for a better understanding of the reality through the eyes of the affected communities.

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