Quality standards for capacity building NGOs

Are you a donor organisation collaborating with partner organisations "in the South" that implement SRHR and HIV prevention programmes for young people? Quality standards are a useful tool to build capacity of your partners.

We all want our programmes on SRHR and HIV prevention for young people to be as impactful as possible. Quality criteria are a useful tool to increase the effectiveness of such programs.
We integrated quality criteria in our trainers project on improving HIV prevention and SRHR education for youth in 12 African countries. Next to working in the 12 countries, we aim to increase the use of quality standards among Dutch organisations to build capacity of their partner organisations in the South as well. 

Using quality standards for assessing prevention projects

When we talk about quality standards, we refer to the quality criteria of effective SRHR and HIV interventions for young people. Quality standards are useful to strengthen such programmes. The quality standards derived from international research which analysed about 80 different sexuality education programmes from countries in Sub Sahara Africa.

The Planning & Support Tool for SRHR/HIV prevention interventions for young people is based on these 28 quality criteria, and explains these criteria, and is a useful tool for designing and evaluating interventions. However, for assessing projects, the tool is often found extensive, therefore a summary developed.  This checklist was developed for programme officers of donor organisations who collaborate with partner organisations ‘in the South’ that implement SRHR education for young people, and can be used to assess project proposals. 

Steps to build the quality standards

A survey conducted among Dutch organisations gave a better understanding of the current practices and needs for support in relation to quality standards. This survey is an initiative of Aidsfonds (previously STOP AIDS NOW!), Rutgers WPF and Share-Net Netherlands.

Following the top 5 ways of preferred learning derived from the survey, we have developed a plan to build the capacity of the Dutch organisations to use quality standards:

  • Sharing the checklist for assessing projects and the descriptions of best practices through our website and newsletter, and the newsletters of Share-Net and RutgersWPF.
  • Exploring options for the online sharing platform.
  • Organising a workshop in the Netherlands on quality standards and how to use them effectively.
  • Assessing whether the e-learning module for trainers (that will be launched mid 2015), is suitable to be used by others as well.
  • Linking more actively those seeking a training for their partners with the existing trainers. 

Please find here the results of the survey.

Useful tools for assessing projects

Are you interested and want to know more? Please feel free to contact Miriam Groenhof, Senior Advisor Prevention for Youth at Aidsfonds (previously STOP AIDS NOW!) or one of our trainer experts in quality in HIV prevention programmes for youth.