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Resilience Food Security Activity Graduating to Resilience in Uganda, Phases I & II

Authors:
IMPEL
Year Published:
2022
Resource Type:
Evaluations and Research
Language:
English

Overview

The Graduating to Resilience activity is a Resilience Food Security Activity (RFSA) implemented by the AVSI Foundation, an international non-governmental organization, and is funded by the United States Agency for International Development  Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance. The Graduating to Resilience activity is implemented in and around the Rwamwanja Refugee Settlement in Kamwenge District, Uganda, and is offered to extremely poor households living in both the refugee and host communities in this area. The goal of the activity is to graduate extremely poor refugee and Ugandan households from conditions of food insecurity and fragile livelihoods to self-reliance and resilience.

Phase II: Cohort 2 Baseline Survey

This report provides an overview of the Graduating to Resilience RFSA, describes the evaluation design for the activity’s second cohort, and provides summary statistics and indicator estimates based on a recently completed round of baseline data collection. Innovations for Poverty Action, with a team of 38 enumerators, administered a baseline survey to 2,570 households in November and December 2021, in the Kamwenge district and in the Rwamwanja settlement. The survey took place before the kickoff of the Graduating to Resilience Cohort 2 and its Interpersonal Psychotherapy in Groups interventions, which started in February 2022.

In 2021, Phase 2 consists of both a round of follow-up surveying of Cohort 1 study participants to measure longer-term impacts, as well as an evaluation designed specifically around Cohort 2 interventions. The latter aims to provide new evidence on how to amplify the impact of the Refined Graduation Approach by incorporating low-cost mental health treatments using Interpersonal Psychotherapy in Groups (IPT-G) methodology. This report focuses on a recent round of baseline surveying that was conducted as part of the design to evaluate Cohort 2. The evaluation of Cohort 2 of the Graduation to Resilience activity has two objectives. The first is to assess the impact of the Refined Graduation Approach in the context of the Phase 2 evaluation. The second objective is to provide new evidence on how to amplify the impact of the Graduation Approach by incorporating low-cost mental health treatments through the IPT-G intervention.

 

 

Phase I: Endline Report, Cohort 1

The study was designed to test the relative performance and cost-effectiveness of three activity variations. Households in treatment arm “T1” were coached individually and received a cash asset transfer. Households in treatment arm “T2” were coached in groups and received a cash asset transfer. Households in treatment arm “T3” were coached individually but did not receive a cash asset transfer. Both T2 and T3 were variations chosen to identify lower-cost, more cost-effective versions of the standard version, which is T1. To estimate the impact of each of the three intervention arms, households were compared to a control group in control villages (“Pure Control”).

Phase I: Summary Brief of Endline Report, Cohort 1

Evidence from multiple contexts suggests that the Graduation Approach, which provides holistic livelihood support for ultra-poor households, has lasting positive impacts on a range of outcomes. However, graduation programs are relatively expensive because of the intense level of support they offer. The costs pose a challenge for governments that want to implement the approach at scale. In Uganda, researchers worked with Innovations for Poverty Action to conduct a randomized evaluation to understand better the effectiveness of several variants of a graduation program focused on improving nutrition and self-reliance among populations in and around a refugee settlement. The activity had significant positive impacts on key outcomes for both participants and their households, including food security, nutrition, and self-reliance. All variations of the program also had large positive returns on investment.