Project Evaluation

Project Evaluation Approach and Criteria

  1. Introduction
  2. Development Projects
  3. Evaluation Criteria
  4. ElectricAid’s Current Priority Funding Areas
  5. Humanitarian Projects & Appeals
  6. ElectricAid’s Funding Maxima (2015)
  7. ElectricAid-specific issues and requirements
  8. References and Accountability
  9. Home Projects

(1) Introduction:
ElectricAid is a Development funding agency, based in ESB & EirGrid, in Ireland. ElectricAid is owned and controlled by its 2,600 contributing members, and is a Registered Charity in the Republic of Ireland (Revenue: CHY 14228; CRA: 20045821). ElectricAid is the largest occupationally-based development funder in Ireland, and aims to be a model for such funds, world-wide.

The role of ElectricAid is to apply funds subscribed by individual staff and pensioners of ESB & EirGrid, and by their respective companies to:

    • Contribute to the development of peoples through co-funding of projects aimed at long-term sustainable improvement in the well-being of communities.
    • To contribute to the relief of poverty
    • To respond to humanitarian crises and emergencies – through special appeals, rather than through our normal development funding.
    • To promote awareness within ESB & EirGrid of development issues.

Drawing on the experience of 28 years of supporting about 2,500 development and humanitarian projects, ElectricAid is setting out its approach to the application process. We seek to maintain an ethos of flexibility and openness to agencies and communities all over the world, and we aim to develop meaningful partnership with a number of them.

We hope to help applicants make effective and informative applications; we outline here the criteria and guidelines we use in assessing funding requests. Our aim is to ensure that our funds are directed securely towards projects that meet our objectives of assisting people and communities to develop out of poverty, injustice and ill-health.

ElectricAid does not have a particular geographic focus, and welcomes applications from all parts of the World.

ElectricAid fully evaluates and authenticates all applications. In all cases, we require detailed reporting on project implementation. Funding applicants are liable to both pre-funding and project delivery evaluation visits from an ElectricAid representative.

ElectricAid welcomes any views or comments on these processes from partner agencies, beneficiary project holders, and, of course, ElectricAid members.

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(2) Development Projects:
When evaluating funding requests, ElectricAid will as a matter of preference assist projects that contribute to the long-term development of communities. Development should involve some or all of the following:

    • Enablement of sustainable economic activity
    • Increased capacity and viability of communities
    • Increased capacity for enterprise and self-reliance.
    • Sustainable increase in food security
    • Increased educational level
    • Progress in Health Service provision
    • Promotion of Human Rights

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(3) Evaluation Criteria:
The evaluation of funding requests will consider the extent to which they include the following desirable features:

    • Community involvement and participatory approaches to project planning and implementation
    • Community Project Input (guideline 10% minimum of total cost – in cash, direct labour, or material. A larger beneficiary contribution is expected in income-generating projects.)
    • Projects & programmes must be non-denominational in service provision & beneficiary selection.
    • Co-funding by recipients and other reputable agencies is desirable and expected.
    • Clarity on legal basis, ownership of project assets, and access to project outputs, after project completion.
    • Alignment of projects with local or regional development planning.
    • Wide spread benefits across target community
    • Facilitation of further downstream development
    • Increase of capacity for co-operative community effort

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(4) ElectricAid’s Current Priority Funding Areas (2015):

    • Basic infrastructure – especially water and sanitation
    • Basic & vocational education
    • Energy – access, security & conservation
    • Health – programmes, facilities & equipment
    • Micro-finance and micro-enterprise
    • Sustainable horticultulture & food security

ElectricAid will fund other projects outside our priority funding areas as resources allow.

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(5) Humanitarian Projects & Appeals:
ElectricAid will from time to time provide funds for small humanitarian response projects and other short-term development funding.

Major emergency relief funds will only be provided via humanitarian relief agencies in response to a specific emergency, and generally on the basis of a special appeal to ESB & EirGrid staff and pensioners. In cases of urgency, there is provision for the Executive Committee Officers and Trustees to respond without a formal application & evaluation process.

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(6) ElectricAid’s Funding Maxima (2015):

  • Projects that are primarily Development 10,000 Euro
  • Projects that are primarily Humanitarian 6,500 Euro

A small number of Special Partners with a long and successful relationship with ElectricAid, may apply for up to 16,000 Euro. All funding decisions are subject to the constraints of ElectricAid’s own financial position. ElectricAid is not able to fund all requests, even those which meet all our evaluation criteria.
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(7) ElectricAid-specific issues & requirements:
ElectricAid does not generally contribute to the running costs, salary or training costs of existing programmes. If it does so, ElectricAid requires that the programme will run for at least 2 years, and that it will be sustainable without ongoing ElectricAid funding.

ElectricAid does not contribute to generalised fund raising, educational scholarships, or individual sponsorships.

In larger capital projects, ElectricAid may contribute to an identifiable sub-component of the project – eg the electrical wiring of a clinic, furniture for a school. This funding should preferably be towards the end of the project, in order to complete it. ElectricAid will not get involved in part-funding any project of a total value greater than €100,000.

In large projects, the source and likelihood of securing the balance of project funding must be established. A fair estimation of the project’s prospects must be available before ElectricAid can consider part-funding.

Project proposals from religious bodies must be non-denominational and non-discriminatory at the point of beneficiary selection or service provision – for example funding may be provided for a denominational school if its admission policy is non-denominational.

ElectricAid does not in general contribute to projects from commercial private-enterprise sources – but does aid enterprise through collective development projects – eg micro-credit schemes or income generating community projects.

ElectricAid requires clarity on the control and ownership of project assets. Funding will not be provided where the project assets will reside in private hands. Community or co-operative ownership is preferred, but institutional control (e.g. church, hospital, school) may also be appropriate.

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(8) References and Accountability:
ElectricAid requires an independently-verifiable reference from an ESB or EirGrid staff member/pensioner, or from an individual, agency or community known and acceptable to ElectricAid. This is a non-negotiable requirement. This requirement does not apply to partners with whom ElectricAid has an established and ongoing relationship.

All applicants are liable to a pre-funding evaluation visit from an ElectricAid representative. All funded projects are liable to an unannounced post-funding project implementation evaluation visit from an ElectricAid representative.

Projects will be funded only if previously funded projects from the same community/agency have been properly reported. Project completion reports are required as soon as is reasonable, and within 12 months of funding in any case. Final project implementation reports should include photographs (preferably in electronic format) where possible.

Project applications from a source previously funded by ElectricAid will only be considered after a 12 month interval. This applies to specific projects, communities, and locations, but not to larger partners/applicants with multiple projects and locations.

Only one project application per applicant will be considered in each funding cycle, of which there are normally 6 per year.

ElectricAid welcomes applications from religious entities of all persuasions, but maintains a distinction between their development and humanitarian work, which is fundable, and their pastoral/evangelical role, which is not.

ElectricAid does not transfer funds to individual private bank accounts.

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(9) Home Projects:
ElectricAid is open to applications from Ireland for projects in Ireland. A number of projects are funded in Ireland each year. Some member contributions are restricted to “Home” use. A number of these projects may be identified and supported by our partner entity, ESB Energy for Generations Fund

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Rev (11) December 2015