HelpAge International EECA Region Assessment
In September and October 2013, Projects-Direct.Net reviewed the management structure and operational opportunities for work on ageing in the Balkans and Former Soviet Union

In 2013 HelpAge International (HAI) wanted to review whether Eastern Europe and Central Asia (EECA) should be managed in its current set up or differently, knowing that in the short to medium term there are no resources to increase financial support to the region.  A related question was whether a Regional Development Centre of the size and coverage of the EECA RDC was the best model for HelpAge International.

Projects-Driect.Net produced a report for HelpAge's senior management  that summarised the main achievements, the best operating methods in the region, the political and funding environment in the region, and capacity building needs of regional offices.

The desk review, field trips and structured conversations provided information relating to the country vs. regional focus of the network. The key issue to resolve here was where the most opportunities and obstacles lie with those two options, as well as identify who the main institutional players are. The data has been developed into a SWOT chart for the region.

The SWOT provided a good basis for understanding the best operating methods for the region. The process combined this knowledge with selected elements of a Save The Children tool that measures and maps linkages between NGOs. The most useful element of this process was to assess the interaction between the current partners and relevant potential partners, who are outside the current structure.

The desk review and conversations will also question peers in civil society and state actors about their views on and experience of the political and funding environment in order to establish whether HelpAge misses relevant donors.

Two field trips to Moscow and Bishkek compared modes of operation in the region; Country Programmes and network support.

All of this information has supported the development of a set of recommendations on of 1-3 options for future effective structures. Each of these structures has been costed using a draft annual budget and organogramfor staffing.

[1] ‘NGO Network Analysis Handbook: how to measure and map linkages between NGOs’, Larry Dershem – Design, Monitoring & Evaluation Advisor, Middle East/Eurasia Region, Save the Children, 2011