Rights Based Approach: Understanding and Practice within NGOs: An Analysis of ActionAid’s project in Pakistan
This study aims to assess if the understanding of Rights Based Approach (RBA) is consistent within ActionAid or not. It also seeks to determine if an ActionAid project adheres to RBA’s essentials or not. The study goes beyond seeking a yes or no answer to these questions. It digs deeper to identify causes of inconsistencies in RBA understanding across ActionAid staff and factors affecting the project’s adherence to RBA essentials. A project being implemented by ActionAid Pakistan has been selected to limit the scope of the study. The research is qualitative and is based on primary data collected from ActionAid, implementing partner, project staff and final beneficiaries. The study also draws learning from previous literature on the subject. Interview guides, focus group discussions, general discussions and review of literature were used for data collection. Information was also obtained from respondents through telephone contact and casual discussions. A checklist derived from the UN’s Statement of Common Understanding on RBA (2003) was used to assess the selected project’s adherence to RBA. The study found inconsistencies in staff understanding of RBA across ActionAid. Existing literature showed ActionAid is not the only large Non Governmental Organization (NGO) with this problem. The project studied was found to be strong in adhering to some essentials of RBA e.g. relationship with the community and using empowering strategies. However, it exhibited weaknesses in adhering to other essentials e.g. monitoring processes along with outcomes and assessing capacity of duty bearers for fulfilling duties. The study concludes by advancing recommendations for ActionAid or other NGOs for improving staff understanding about RBA and for better adhering to RBA essentials in their ongoing and/or upcoming work including; institutionalization of donor funded project work, implementation of initiatives for capacity building and maintenance of a balance between advocacy and service delivery in RBA projects.
ForlagUniversitetet i Tromsø
University of Tromsø
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