Many organisations around the world are supporting children who have become separated from their families. Most of these children are considered to be vulnerable due to their situation and circumstances. The ultimate goal for most organisations is to reunite these children with their families, or if this is not possible,place children into alternative family-based environments, and support their reintegration back into the wider community.
Considerable attention and resource shave been targeted at the reintegration of different groups of children, yet rigorous evaluations of these interventions are rare and it is not always clear what lessons are being learnt. When evaluations do take place, the focus tends to be on whether the programme objectives were achieved, rather than if the activities benefited the children or how and why they made a positive impact. This means we might be learning if a programme did what it said it would do and reunified X number of children with their families, but we are not learning how reunification and reintegration was supported, what it was that made a real difference,and how this affected the overall well-being of
these children and their families.
If we hope to improve the current responses to children, and understand and strengthen reintegration programmes, then we must get better at monitoring and evaluating reintegration programmes. However, we must also increase our understanding of how children's well-being can be improved and what successful reintegration looks like from the point of view of the child, their family and community.
Who this toolkit it for
This toolkit is primarily for individuals working at agencies that oversee, manage and support children and young people in their reintegration back into families and communities. The toolkit will be of particular relevance to individuals who are involved in the planning of reintegration programmes and the implementation of monitoring and evaluation activities linked to these programmes. Some of the introductory sections will also be useful for policy-makers and those responsible for overseeing and regulating reintegration efforts, who will be able to guide others and make use of data generated by M&E systems.
What this toolkit covers
- Chapter one looks at why monitoring and evaluation is needed in the area of reintegration and why we are looking across groups of separated children who benefit from reintegration programmes.
- Chapter two explores reintegration more closely,what it is and how it can be defined. This pulls on background studies which were undertaken in the initial phases of this toolkit's development.
- Chapter three moves on to explore what monitoring and evaluation (M&E) are and some of the key terms associated with M&E. In addition participatory M&E is explained and how this can be a key approach with vulnerable children and families