This experience describes the design and execution of participatory evaluation carried out using the intervention tool, “Mesa de Trabajo” (Working Group) used by TECHO to find solutions to the main social problems affecting settlements in Latin America.
The Working Group, is a meeting point for volunteers and settlement residents to reflect on “the neighbourhood’s interests” and find solutions “with the aim of designing an action plan which maximises community capacities and makes improvements to issues regarding housing and habitat” (TECHO).
The aim of the evaluation (see final report) was to observe how the Working Group operated in the Santa Teresa settlement, and analyse the strengths and weaknesses of this intervention strategy from the community’s perspective. The main stakeholders of the intervention participated throughout the process starting by reconstructing the intervention’s timeline through to defining the evaluation questions, analysis criteria and choosing which mechanisms and tools should be used in the case study.
The report looks at the road travelled thus far and results and recommendations which cover a range of aspects related to the Working Group. These include needs prioritisation; characteristics which influence how it works; the contribution it has made in the community; how it has enabled self-management; what participation looks like; and what projects are carried out, etc.
The report also illustrates some participatory tools specifically designed for this evaluation which could be replicated in other contexts. The report annex includes access, through hyperlinks, to important tools designed for evaluation, such as: (a) Evaluation matrix: Santa Teresa, (b) Methodology: ‘Defining the Working Group’, (c) Methodology: ‘Timeline’, (d) Methodology: ‘Horse Race’, (e) Methodology: ‘In-depth Interviews’.