Our thoughts are with everyone at this time who is affected personally and professionally by the COVID-19 pandemic. It is having profound effects on our lives and our ways of working. INTRAC will use this page as a hub for sharing the ways we are working to support civil society to respond to the pandemic.
INTRAC’s efforts focus on three areas.
Firstly, we are protecting our staff, ensuring that they can work safely from home and helping them to adjust to new ways of operating.
Secondly, we are working closely with current clients, partners and training participants to adapt ongoing programmes, evaluations and courses. We are rapidly translating face-to-face workshops and courses to online versions; we are connecting national and international consultants to deliver high-quality M&E at a distance; and we are providing advice and support to programme managers and organisational leadership to develop appropriate strategies to cope with the fast-moving context.
Thirdly, we are thinking about how we can deliver on our mission to strengthen civil society in the short-, medium- and long-term in this new and changing world. The INTRAC global network of consultants is coming together regularly to exchange information on what is happening to civil society in different contexts, and to ensure that we are enabling organisations to deliver on their missions. We are working hard to strengthen this network.
How we can help
Guided by our mission and values, our expertise in supporting and strengthening civil society and organisations is needed more than ever in these times of turbulence, uncertainty, and change.
We know that civil society has a key role to play in the response to COVID-19; the past weeks have shown how important that contribution is. At the same time, organisations are struggling to cope with the many adjustments they have to make in how they work and finding the resources they need to continue working.
We can help. Whether you are a civil society organisation, or a funder that supports civil society, we can help you in:
Adaptive management – The restrictions on travel (international and national) require us to do much of our work remotely, and to shift capacity, resources, and responsibility from central locations to more local contexts. INTRAC offers online training and can provide remote consultancy support and advice to help you adapt. Our network of consultants around the world can help you think through the issues you are facing and ensure you get sound and trustworthy support.
Monitoring & evaluation support – Accountability matters, and donors still require reports and monitoring on results. However, the goalposts have shifted, objectives may need adjustment, and M&E frameworks and methodologies need to change. In line with our M&E Manifesto pledges, our approach is always to find the most appropriate methods that strengthen organisations and build robust systems. In August, INTRAC collaborated with Community World Service Asia (CWSA) to run a webinar exploring remote monitoring techniques to help overcome these challenges.
Organisational development and strategic support – The COVID-19 pandemic poses major challenges for existing strategies as underlying assumptions change dramatically. Drawing on decades of experience as a critical friend to civil society organisations, INTRAC can help to review strategies, structures and organisational designs.
Looking to the future
INTRAC is of and for civil society. We want to see civil society emerge stronger from this crisis than before. If we are truly to “build back better”, we need to focus on:
- Strengthening local capacity INTRAC is committed to supporting local organisations to build their capacity. This will require serious examination of the accountability mechanisms of development and humanitarian funding, and the power differentials in global organisations and structures.
- True global cooperation COVID-19 is being felt everywhere and its impacts will vary depending on where you are. The response requires a global perspective and global cooperation, as well as local knowledge, agency, and leadership.
- Ensuring we do not neglect other crises Even as we face COVID-19, we must not neglect issues of climate change, migration, conflict and security, and inequality. An informed, joined-up and well-resourced response to COVID-19 will help with all of these crises and will contribute towards the better world we all want to see, for ourselves, for our children, and for those generations yet to come.