Consultant for Start Fund Bangladesh Midterm Evaluation

1. Basic Information:

Title of the Work:

Start Fund Bangladesh Midterm Evaluation


Oct 01, 2019 to Nov 14, 20191


The Start Fund Bangladesh (2017-2020) is a £10 million rapid emergency response fund set up by the Start Network with support from UK aid and hosted by ACF Bangladesh. Modelled on the successful Start Fund that activates funding within 72 hours of a crisis alert, the fund has been setup to be accessible to both national and international member NGOs operating in Bangladesh to respond early and fast to under the radar emergencies in Bangladesh. These decisions are made by humanitarian actors within member agencies with all projects selected within the country or region of the crisis, while projects start within 7 days and finish within 45 days.
As such, the expected impact and outcome of Start Fund Bangladesh is that “Loss of lives, livelihoods and dignity are minimised”, given that the “Humanitarian responses are rapid, informed and adapted to the need of the affected communities” respectively. These are expected to be achieved as a result of the following outputs.

  • Establish a national civil society owned fund that is i) open and inclusive; ii) governed by evidence based, transparent and neutral decision making iii) rapid and iv) anticipatory
  • Expand the number of local members (actors and agencies) that can participate in strategic decision making and access funding more directly
  • Demonstrate the value and complement existing humanitarian preparedness and response to promote greater collaboration

As of Aug 2019, Start Fund Bangladesh has been among the first responders to address 14 small/medium emergencies, reaching around 0.3 million people with cash, hygiene materials, hygiene promotion and other supports2 through awarding more than £3.4 million to 14 of its member agencies  and their partners. To further localize the Fund currently all allocation and project selection decisions are made in-country. In addition, an intensive due diligence and capacity mapping has been completed, that resulted to the inclusion of 26 N/LNGOs as Start Fund Bangladesh members along with its existing 18 I/NNGO members that are eligible to access and make decisions regarding the funding mechanism.
The Start Fund Bangladesh is currently planning to conduct an independent evaluation serving both accountability and learning purpose through assessing the progress and evaluating strategies, identifying major achievements, niche/ value addition and lessons learnt from the national funding model within the evolving humanitarian context in Bangladesh and exploring strategies to adapt with it.

Objective of the work:

In particular, the evaluation shall assess and rate3 the success of the project’s implementation and draw lessons to provide strategic direction based on based on the following key questions4

  • Relevance/ Appropriateness: Are the activities, strategies and outputs consistent with the intended impacts and effects, and the attainment of the overall goal and objectives? To what extent are the objectives still valid?
  • Effectiveness: To what extent were the objectives achieved / are likely to be achieved? What were the major factors influencing the achievement or non-achievement of the objectives?
  • Efficiency: Were inputs utilised as planned, activities cost-efficient and objectives achieved on time? Is there a potential for optimization (e.g. concerning planning) of the resources in the most efficient way?
  • Impact: What real difference has the activities made to the target groups? What has happened as a result?
  • Connectedness/ Sustainability: To what extent were local capacities developed or strengthened through the interventions?
  • Coherence: How was coordination (coherence) achieved, and/or why was there a lack in coherence?
  • Coverage: Were the supports aligned to regionally different needs? What were the main reasons for certain target groups having received support?

So, this includes the achievement (i.e. progress, performance and results) of outputs and activities in terms of situation /context, needs, planning and resource mobilization, coordination, quality (i.e. coverage, targeting, timeliness, soundness, transparency, collaboration, complementarity) of activities and responses as a result of

  • ownership, stakeholder participation and accountability, governance and credibility of the strategic decision making and management options, coordination, influencing role, visibility, partnerships and networking, localization
  • implementation approach (including capacity building/ institutional development approach), adaptability of project management
  • application of project MEAL plan (i.e. theory of change, logframe, target, indicators, tools, disaggregated data collection and management, reporting, accountability, knowledge management etc.)
  • risk management based on the assumptions in the project’s logframe, including unintended outcomes and external factors
  • financial planning, management, control (e.g. forecasting, disbursement, reporting, compliance etc.) including fund raising initiatives
  • feasibility (project management arrangements, capacities of hosting agency and counterparts, backstopping, partnership arrangements etc.) and cost effectiveness

Key Accountabilities:

  • Review of project documents: Concept note, proposal, theory of change, logframe, learning framework, activity plan, budget, hosting arrangement, risk management plan, agreement, SHPR logframe, relevant DFID SDP indicators etc.
  • Review of alert cycle documents: Start Fund Handbook, Alert notes, survey results, briefing notes, allocation notes, proposals, selection minutes, award letters, final report, learning exchange notes, crisis response summaries, case studies, PDM reports etc.
  • Review of other reports and learning documents: Learning workshop notes, peer review reports, learning visit reports, design & build phase report, biannual reports, SHPR logframe/ SDP indicator reports, delivery chain and risk mapping, workshop/ training/ meeting notes, CSO mapping report, Start Fund Bangladesh Localisation Review, Process Documentation, SHPR midterm evaluation, Grand Bargain Localization Work stream Report, audit report, Independent Aid Commission Assessment (IACA) Report, National Audit Office report etc.
  • Consultation with key stakeholders: Start Fund Bangladesh Allocation Rota and Project Selection Committee members, Start Fund team, cluster coordinators, host agency/ DFID Bangladesh/ UNOPS, IFRC representatives etc.
  • Onsite appraisal: Gather data  through participatory approach from at least 4 sampled response project beneficiaries5 to attribute the impact6 , including case studies, consultation with local government representatives7 at the response sites, and project staffs8
  • Validation of findings, lessons and recommendation: by the Start Fund Bangladesh members, host and secretariat


  • A brief inception report on
  • Introduction of project context, objectives and theory of change, implementation structure, stakeholders and partners, design and financing
  • Scope, objective and methodology to carry out the evaluation, sources of information, data collection tools (i.e. questionnaire, checklists, interview guides etc.), thematic analysis, limitations, timeline
  • A brief yet easily understandable, evidence based evaluation report highlighting9
  • Evaluation findings in terms of relevance/ appropriateness, effectiveness, efficiency, likely impact, connectedness/ sustainability, coherence, and coverage
  • Conclusions, lessons learnt10 and recommendations11
  • Presentation of evaluation findings and lessons for validation, to be followed by management response
  • A short (2-page) synthesis or summary of evaluation findings and lessons to support the dissemination of learning to a wide range of audiences

Expected Outputs of the Consultancy:

An independent review of progress and strategies, major achievements, niche/ value addition and lessons learnt from the national funding model within the evolving humanitarian context in Bangladesh and identification of strategies to adapt with it

 Work Location:

Dhaka and response sites12 throughout Bangladesh

Responsible organization and Contact Information:

ACF Bangladesh, Orin Tower, House 23, Road 113A, Gulshan 2, Dhaka 1212, Bangladesh

2. Estimation of days:

45 days13 (Oct 01, 2019 to Nov 14, 2019). A tentative timeline is given below

  • Document desk review, background work, context analysis and methodology finalization in consultation with the SFB team: by mid Oct 2019
  • Primary data collection (e.g. consultation with key stakeholders): By early Nov 2019
  • Data analysis, draft report development and validation workshop: by mid Nov 2019
  • Final report submission: by end of Nov, 2019

3. Validation of the Proposal:

All cost should be quoted in BDT and will remain valid up to ninety (90) days from the date of proposal submission.  

4. Outline of the Financial Proposal:

The financial proposal should include VAT and TAX (all-inclusive and will be deducted at source during settlement of invoice as per government rule). Please note that, the amount mentioned in the financial proposal will be assessed in line with the quality of the technical proposal.

5. General condition of consultancy:

  • The consultant/s need to work with Start Fund Bangladesh team at the SFB Secretariat (i.e. hosted by ACF Dhaka office) 2-5 days/ as required at the initial stage to collect relevant documents and during methodology development period.
  • The payment will be made in three trenches. First trench of 40% upon the submission of the inception report (see deliverable A), second trench of 40% after the submission of draft report, synthesis and presentation (see deliverable B, C, D), and the remaining 20% upon the validated final submitted report.
  • The consultant will conduct the work using own computer equipment.
  • The consultant will have to bear the transport and accommodation costs for the assignment.

6. Criteria for Selection:

We will therefore be selecting the consultant following a two staged evaluation. For the first stage the following criteria will be used for shortlisting.


Total Points

Knowledge skill and professional experience:

  • Experience in conducting monitoring, measurement, impact assessment, evaluations, after action review, outcome mapping, action research, knowledge management, accountability etc. especially for DFID funded and humanitarian projects
  • Experience of humanitarian work14 and in depth understanding of emergency funding mechanisms, localization and humanitarian standards and commitments aspect especially in Bangladesh


Technical approach:

  • Overall understanding of the ToR, evaluation criteria and research questions
  • Proposed methodology including proposed design, scheduling, tools, sampling15 , data management, analysis etc.
  • Team composition and roles16 , management, time contributions (onsite/distant days) etc.


Overall Technical Evaluation Points


Financial Evaluation




The shortlisted consultant (or firm) will be then called for an interview and the final contract will be offered upon satisfactory performance.

7. Competencies Required:

The consultant (or consulting firm) we are looking for preferably meets the following competencies -

  • At least 7 years of proven experience of facilitating similar review exercises, impact assessments, evaluation, research, survey design etc. that involves diverse stakeholders utilizing both quantitative and qualitative methods especially for DFID funded projects.
  • Understanding of the humanitarian system and architecture especially in Bangladesh, response and recovery (e.g. cash based interventions) as well as recent developments that have arisen after the Grand Bargain, Charter for Change commitments etc. to address the underlying requirements for localization of humanitarian aid agenda and equitable partnerships with local and national NGOs.
  • Academic degree in Disaster Management, Social Sciences, Business Administration, Organizational Development, Research, Project Evaluation or other relevant technical areas.
  • Excellent analytical, report writing and presentation skills.
  • Willingness and capacity to be flexible and accommodating when faced with difficult and frustrating working conditions
  • Fluency in written and spoken English, while fluency Bengali communication skills will be an added advantage

8. Supervision:

The consultant will design and conduct the assignment in consultation and coordination with the Start Fund Bangladesh team especially the MEAL Coordinator.

9. Confidentiality:

All the outputs will be treated as Start Fund Bangladesh’s property and the outputs or any part of it cannot be sold, used or reproduced in any manner without prior permission from the Start Fund Bangladesh.

10. Submission of Expression of Interest (EOI):

The consultant will confirm her/ his expression of interest and submit a proposal (2 copies of both technical and financial in printed copies including understanding of the assignment and evaluation criteria, research questions, methodology, work plan, team roles, CVs, and past track records of max 10 pages) according to the Terms of Reference (TOR) in a closed envelope clearly marked as (EOI-SFB Midterm Evaluation) on or before 22 Sep 2019 at ACF Bangladesh, Orin Tower, House 23, Road 113/A, Gulshan 2, Dhaka 1212, Bangladesh.

In case of any query please contact Imtiaz Ahmad (email:; mobile: +8801882086245, +01719115617)

1 at max

2 At Cox’s Bazar, Bandarbans, Rangamati, Jamalpur, Kurigram, Gaibandha, Bogura, Sirajganj, Lalmonirhat, Dinajpur, Kurigram, Dhaka, Moulvibazar, Sylhet, Shariatpur, Borguna to respond to cyclone, landslides, floods, slum fire, waterlogging, nor’wester, anticipated livelihood insecurity due to a 65 day fishing ban and riverbank erosion, while the alert for the Rohingya refugee influx and Cyclone Fani was not activated

3 on a scale of 1-5 or Highly Satisfactory, Satisfactory, Moderately Satisfactory, Moderately Unsatisfactory, Unsatisfactory and Highly Unsatisfactory or Highly likely, Likely and Unlikely

4 Adhering to OECD-DAC (1992) evaluation criteria

5 effectiveness and impact, satisfaction and perception on quality and accountability, relevance and appropriateness, efficiency and timeliness etc. in terms of the assistance received through FGDs

6 Household surveys might not be required considering budgetary and time constraints, as well as the mixed nature of the project

7 covering overall quality, engagement, coordination, complementarity and accountability, direct and indirect impact (both positive and negative), timeliness etc.

8 Challenges, lessons, achievements, process, coordination

9 Including data collection forms, datasets, photographs, list of respondents, references etc.

10 Covering both challenges, shortfalls, good practice and success

11 Operational, pragmatic, realistic and ordered as per priority

12 Cox’s Bazar, Sylhet/Moulvibazar, Bandarbans/Rangamati, Shariatpur, Bogura or Barguna

13 at max

14 especially in cash transfer, WaSH, shelter/NFI, education, health, nutrition, protection

15 for group consultation with beneficiaries, KII etc.

16 in tool design, training, analysis, report writing