Evaluation of UNV’s Support to UN Peacebuilding Fund’s Gender Promotion Initiative

Report Cover Image
Evaluation Plan:
2018-2021, UNV
Evaluation Type:
Final Project
Planned End Date:
06/2020
Completion Date:
07/2020
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
26,500

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Title Evaluation of UNV’s Support to UN Peacebuilding Fund’s Gender Promotion Initiative
Atlas Project Number: 00095244
Evaluation Plan: 2018-2021, UNV
Evaluation Type: Final Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 07/2020
Planned End Date: 06/2020
Management Response: Yes
Focus Area:
  • 1. Sustainable
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2018-2021)
SDG Goal
  • Goal 15. Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss
SDG Target
  • 15.6 Promote fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources and promote appropriate access to such resources, as internationally agreed
Evaluation Budget(US $): 26,500
Source of Funding:
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 26,500
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Nationality
Melissa Andrade Costa Senior Evaluation Consultant BRAZIL
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders:
Countries: GLOBAL
Lessons
Findings
Recommendations
1

Continue partnership between UNV, UN Women and PBSO through the deployment of international and national UN Volunteers to PBSO projects and promotion of learning in the linkages between gender, volunteerism and peacebuilding (outside a project framework).

2

Give light to the importance of volunteerism to peacebuilding through further fostering of learning and research in the area.

3

Improve selection process.

4

Improve preparation of UN Volunteers and Host Organizations before deployment.

5

Sensitize partners on the ground about the links between volunteerism and development.

6

Review protocol for UNV´s work in host countries to assist UN Volunteers and promote volunteerism.

7

Consider building a network of Alumni for the UN Volunteers to act as Ambassadors of Volunteerism.

1. Recommendation:

Continue partnership between UNV, UN Women and PBSO through the deployment of international and national UN Volunteers to PBSO projects and promotion of learning in the linkages between gender, volunteerism and peacebuilding (outside a project framework).

Management Response: [Added: 2021/06/14] [Last Updated: 2021/06/14]

1. UNV accepts this recommendation. Since the time of this recommendation, the GYPI Call for Proposals and Guidance Note 2020 already encourages UNCTs to budget national and international UN Volunteers as part of their implementation capacities. As part of its ongoing work, UNV continues to deploy national and international UN Volunteers within peacebuilding projects when demanded. However, no new project will be established to be implemented by UNV and no dedicated funding will be allocated by UNV. UN Volunteers deployed for peacebuilding projects will be funded by the UN host entities.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1.1 UNV will continue to strengthen the partnership with PBSO and UN Women for the deployment of UN Volunteers and engagement of volunteer groups including through the guidance from PBF on preparation and submission of GYPI projects (as recommendations not mandatory items).
[Added: 2021/06/14] [Last Updated: 2022/01/24]
UNV New York Office 2021/12 Completed UN Volunteers have been integrated into PBSO programme guidance materials, including GYPI guidance and GYPI information webinars, where UNCTs were encouraged to budget UN Volunteer positions in project proposals. History
2. Recommendation:

Give light to the importance of volunteerism to peacebuilding through further fostering of learning and research in the area.

Management Response: [Added: 2021/06/14] [Last Updated: 2021/06/14]

2. UNV accepts this recommendation. In the intervening period since the recommendation was issued, UNV has established an evidence library on volunteering and peacebuilding. UNDP has made significant improvements contributing to the theme at the knowledge portal. UNV has also promoted learning on linkages between volunteering and peacebuilding, and already supported studies such as contribution of volunteerism to development in the G5 Sahel countries as part of research and evidence on its knowledge portal on volunteering (knowledge.unv.org).

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
2.1 UNV will continue to develop its evidence library on volunteering and peacebuilding on the knowledge portal.
[Added: 2021/06/14]
Volunteer Advisory Services Section (VASS) 2021/03 Completed
3. Recommendation:

Improve selection process.

Management Response: [Added: 2021/06/14]

3. UNV accepts this recommendation. UNV already has a well functional recruitment and deployment system for UN Volunteers that was well assessed by this evaluation. This is being further strengthened with the digital transformation to improve the performance and efficiency of UNV recruitment and deployment process. UNV also maintains a roster of profiles of candidates including those with competencies relevant for peacebuilding contexts. Meanwhile to further improve the selection process, UNV will ensure that all shortlisted candidates have peacebuilding background as per TORs, shortlisted candidates for national UN Volunteers assignments have local language competencies as per TORs and the reference checks, when requested by the Host entity, are conducted on time for deployment of UN Volunteers in peacebuilding contexts. It is also clarified that selection of candidates is the responsibility of the Host entity, not UNV. UNV is responsible for talent acquisition, candidate identification and submission, as well as contracting of selected candidates once selection is confirmed by the Host entity. Thus, local language competencies should be verified by the Host entity during interview.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
3.1 UNV to ensure that the selected UN Volunteers have a peacebuilding background, the reference checks are carefully used and careful selection of UN Volunteers with relevant language competencies.
[Added: 2021/06/14] [Last Updated: 2021/07/08]
Volunteer Service Center (VSC) 2021/07 Completed Between 1 January and 30 June 2021, VSC submitted candidates from the UNV Talent Pool for 42 UNV assignments under the Peace Building Officer Job Title, who all had backgrounds in peacebuilding and relevant competencies as per TOR. In the same period, the UNV Talent Pool grew by 247 candidates (with a peacebuilding background), 54% of whom are female candidates. History
3.2 UNV to provide guidance to UN host agencies about profiles of UN Volunteers during the design phase of projects in case they need.
[Added: 2021/06/14] [Last Updated: 2021/07/26]
UNV Regional Offices (lead) + UNV Field Units 2021/07 Completed This is an ongoing (and not timebound) activity with all UNV Regional Offices engaged. History
4. Recommendation:

Improve preparation of UN Volunteers and Host Organizations before deployment.

Management Response: [Added: 2021/06/14]

4. UNV accepts this recommendation. UNV as part of its core functions prepares incoming UN Volunteers by providing them with resources relating to UNV Conditions of Service for international UN Volunteers and national UN Volunteers. UNV has implemented a dedicated UN Volunteer Onboarding Portal with comprehensive guidance and the Volunteer Reporting Application (VRA) system for UN Volunteers that provides them the opportunity to report on their experiences for further improvements. UNV will further enhance the preparation of UN Volunteers by designing online learning/training modules. UNV also regularly informs the UN host entities about hosting UN Volunteers and has launched the publicly available UN Partners Toolkit on hosting UN Volunteers.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
4.1 UNV to design pre-deployment resources for incoming UN Volunteers in peacebuilding assignments.
[Added: 2021/06/14] [Last Updated: 2022/06/27]
UNV Human Resources Section (HRS) /Learning Section 2022/09 Initiated History
4.2 UNV to engage with UN host entities to inform them about UNV Conditions of Service and valuing UN Volunteers contribution.
[Added: 2021/06/14] [Last Updated: 2022/06/27]
UNV Regional Offices (lead) + UNV Field Units 2022/09 Initiated History
5. Recommendation:

Sensitize partners on the ground about the links between volunteerism and development.

Management Response: [Added: 2021/06/14]

5. UNV accepts this recommendation. UNV will utilise the knowledge base generated through the knowledge portal on volunteering to sensitise its UN partners on the links between volunteers and development. The evidence generated through Global Technical Meeting (GTM) on reimagining volunteerism for 2030 Agenda and beyond will be further enhanced with new and innovative models on volunteering contribution to development that will be utilised to sensitise partners on the ground.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
5.1 Encourage UN host entities to access knowledge products on volunteerism and development through UNV knowledge portal.
[Added: 2021/06/14] [Last Updated: 2022/01/28]
Volunteer Advisory Services Section (VASS) (lead), Regional Offices, Field Units 2022/01 Completed Through its regular outreach efforts, VASS continues to encourage UN Host entities to access and share products on the UNV knowledge portal. In 2021, the following outreach efforts were made: - KP newsletter was shared with 19 host entities (73 individuals); - 19 host agencies (73 individuals) received invitations to webinars. The results of the outreach include: - A new tab on south-south cooperation together with UNSSC was developed (will be available on the portal by February 2022); the portal was linked on the UNSSC South-South Galaxy platform - The portal had 82,647 page views, including 1,433 page views of the gender and volunteering part; - 2 events (webinar and online discussion) on gender with a total of 145 participants History
6. Recommendation:

Review protocol for UNV´s work in host countries to assist UN Volunteers and promote volunteerism.

Management Response: [Added: 2021/06/14]

6. UNV accepts this recommendation. UNV already promotes networking of UN Volunteers within same duty station that can be further enhanced to include UN Volunteers working in similar contexts across different geographical areas or projects for them to be able to share experiences for mutual help and support. Further, as noted in the evaluation report, UNV has provided support in engaging local volunteer networks with the UN Volunteers serving in peacebuilding contexts (e.g. Sri Lanka), however such engagement in future will also depend upon the design of projects and necessary conditions for safety and security of local volunteers and UN Volunteers (especially in a peacebuilding context).

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
6.1 UNV to foster promotion of networking among volunteers for mutual help and assistance for wellbeing of volunteers in the peacebuilding context.
[Added: 2021/06/14] [Last Updated: 2022/06/27]
Regional Offices (lead) + Field Units 2022/09 Initiated History
6.2 UNV to conduct regular check-ins related to the wellbeing and security of UN Volunteers.
[Added: 2021/06/14] [Last Updated: 2022/06/27]
Field Units 2022/09 Initiated History
7. Recommendation:

Consider building a network of Alumni for the UN Volunteers to act as Ambassadors of Volunteerism.

Management Response: [Added: 2021/06/14]

7. UNV accepts this recommendation. UNV has already initiated a regional alumni initiative in Europe and Central Asia that provides UN Volunteers with the opportunity to learn from former volunteers now working in managerial positions in the UN system. In addition, several Facebook groups have been established on the initiative of individual UNV Field Units or former UN Volunteers. UNV is working towards expanding and formalizing these initiatives.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
7.1 UNV to build upon the alumni initiative in Europe and Central Asia and to use it as a model for other regions.
[Added: 2021/06/14] [Last Updated: 2022/06/27]
Regional Offices (lead) 2022/09 Initiated History

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