Documenting impact

Improvements in a human rights situation take time, are challenging to attribute to a particular initiative, and are all too often affected by external factors, which may cause the situation to remain unchanged or deteriorate for the worse, despite the best efforts of human rights organisations. This makes it a daunting task to document the impact of human rights work.

Yet donors require reporting on impact, preferably in numbers and charts, yet the logic of fast news and simple messaging can be somewhat contradictory to how we achieve impact in human rights work.

HRHF has built a results framework to help with this. Such a framework can turn the demands for reporting into a tool to navigate, operationalise and achieve impactful strategies for a human rights organisation.

Our framework is rooted in the theory of change and framed by our strategy for 2014-2018. Making our desired long-term goals the starting point, we worked back from these identifying what objectives, outcomes, and activities (outputs) would lead to the desired change and ultimately to achieving our goals. We then created indicators to measure these outcomes and outputs. In short, the framework seeks to link and measure all activities in the context of the organisation’s goals.

Once we had the framework set, we then looked at indicators and benchmarked where we were, setting targets within these indicators, to ensure everything we do is working toward our strategic objectives.

Top photo: Discussion on HRHF’s theory of change and results framework (Liudmila Ulyashyna from HRHF is pictured). Photo: HRHF.