(BANGKOK, November 26, 2020) – For many human rights organizations, measuring the impacts of human-rights work is challenging. Some organizations cite the long-term nature of their objectives as a principal challenge in monitoring and evaluating their impacts, while others face limited resources.
Either way, detailed monitoring and evaluation is critical to achieving human rights impacts: if we don’t understand what works, we won’t succeed.
In early November, Fortify Rights developed and led a workshop for the Refugee Rights Litigation Project (RRLP) in Bangkok, Thailand, aimed at helping them improve their internal monitoring, evaluation, and learning (MEL). Three full-time staff and a voluntary advisor from RRLP joined the half-day workshop, which drew on Fortify Rights’ innovative approach to MEL.
The workshop provided an overview of how Fortify Rights tracks, monitors, and analyzes its progress towards goals and objectives. It also aimed to assist the team at RRLP to develop an MEL strategy that would work for their organization, by helping them identify key impact indicators, means of verification, and ways to take advantage of challenges to learn and grow. Finally, the workshop covered some of the critical aspects of donor reporting and compliance.
The RRLP is a new group of pioneering Thai lawyers who seek to provide refugees in Thailand with practical legal advice and representation. They do this by advising and defending refugees facing prosecution or deportation, and by documenting best practices in refugee litigation strategies. The organization is developing the first-ever Thai-language litigation manual for Thai lawyers on the issue of refugees and asylum seekers.
Given the small size of RRLP and its lack of a dedicated MEL team member, the workshop’s key objective was to provide practical tips and techniques to help the organization monitor its progress towards goals and measure its contribution to making human rights impacts in Thailand.
“The workshop was very practical and tailored to the work of RRLP,” said one participant. “I think we will be able to use several concrete suggestions from the workshop.”