Guidance for third party monitoring entities and donors on handling external M&E and verification processes for GBV & child protection programmes (April 2020)

Manual and Guideline
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When you are a donor (and an implementer of GBV or Child Protection programming) contracting third-party monitoring entities to provide M&E/verification services for your own or other organizations’ GBV or Child Protection programme:


• At the selection phase, prioritize entities with proven track-record of providing TPM services for GBV, Child Protection or Protection programmes, and that are able to demonstrate, tangibly, how they have successfully incorporated safety and ethical considerations into their work.

• TPM entities should have clear child protection or safeguarding policy and a code of conduct in place, as well as policies for the Prevention for Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (PSEA). TPM staff should be given training in these policies.

• As feasible, include safety and ethical compliance requirements into TORs and contracting agreements. For example, entities may be requested to have a Protection specialist on staff; screen enumerators for attitudes towards GBV/gender/survivors/children during recruitment processes; make specific efforts to hire and deploy female enumerators.

• TPM entities may not be used to applying a Protection/GBV/Child Protection lens to their work. If your organization is also an implementer of GBV or Child Protection programmes, appoint a focal point (or a group of qualified individuals) within the GBV or Child Protection team to oversee the work and ensure that the TPM entity remains attentive to the realities and requirements of GBV programming.

• Be clear on the scope of TPM activities from the onset, highlight the types of interventions that can and cannot be monitored by the TPM entity.

• Offer a list of suggestive low and medium sensitivity interventions that could be subject to external M&E/verification processes. The focus of TPM activities should be on non-sensitive interventions pertaining to Prevention, Empowerment, Capacity Building interventions.

• Support the capacity building of TPM staff on specific GBV or Child Protection related topics and monitoring tools through directly facilitating training, sharing relevant materials, etc. All field enumerators should at least have practical training on basic GBV or Child Protection concepts and safe referrals; The GBV Sub Cluster/Sector Coordination or Child Protection teams can be reached for support, as needed/relevant.

• Jointly agree on locations to be targeted by TPM activities, request the TPM entity to submit an implementation plan and calendar for approval.

• Share with the TPM entity the set of tools that they may use for monitoring and evaluating these programme interventions, and collaborate with them on refining these, as needed. Request that all final versions are shared with your organization's GBV or Child Protection team for approval. If your organization is not an implementer of GBV or Child Protection programmes, ensure that these are validated by a GBV, Child Protection or Protection specialist and that TPM entities observe the corresponding ethical and safety protocols, particularly when administering tools with a medium sensitivity level.

• Whenever programme beneficiaries are to be engaged in TPM activities (e.g. to assess satisfaction level with the services or activities, etc.), obtain participants' informed consent prior to sharing their names and contact details with the TPM entity. Children (under 18) should not be directly engaged by TPM staff.

• If your organization is also an implementer of GBV or Child Protection programmes, ensure that programme staff working in the areas targeted by TPM processes (e.g. Women and Girls Safe Spaces) are informed about the purpose, scope, time and locations of the activities, and duly briefed on the ethical and safety boundaries to be respected by field enumerators who will be visiting the site(s). TPM should always be complemented with acceptance-building measures, as well as transparent communication with communities.

• Request programme staff to report back to senior management in case they witness any breach of protocols by the TPM field staff if they happen to be on site during the implementation of TPM activities.

• Whenever possible, triangulate data received from the TPM exercise with other sources of information.

• If TPM entities request access to data related to GBV Response services or Child Protection specialised services in order to be able to report on trends (e.g.: analysis reports or number of GBV cases in a given period), only share data in aggregate form.