Factors Influencing The Performance Of Monitoring And Evaluation Systems In Non-governmental Organizations Funded Educational Projects In Murang’a County, Kenya.
Though monitoring and evaluation is still in its nascent stages in Africa, most organizations have come to appreciate its strategic value in keeping track of projects under implementation and reviewing the relevance, impact, sustainability, effectiveness and efficiency of completed and ongoing projects. Greater call for accountability of organizations and governments by donors and the general public coupled with the desire by organizations to show evidence of results have led to adoption of monitoring and evaluation systems. Some international donors actually require evidence of a functioning M&E system in an organization before injecting funds to a particular project. It is therefore imperative that more research is done in this area to contribute to the body of knowledge and contribute to best practices. This study looked at factors influencing the performance of monitoring and evaluation systems in educational projects by Non Governmental Organizations in Murang‟a County. Its objectives were to establish the influence of budgetary allocation, stakeholder participation, level of training and strength of the M&E team on the performance of Monitoring and Evaluation systems. This study is expected to help project managers, donor agencies and NGO staff, develop a better understanding of M&E systems and how to improve them to meet the expectations of stakeholders as well as provide valuable information for future interventions. The findings of this study are also expected to advance knowledge and therefore form a base for further studies and also inform policies towards setting up organizational structures for M&E. A descriptive survey design was used for the study where structured questionnaires were used to collect data which was analyzed using SPSS. No sampling was done as all the M&E staff and project managers in NGOs implementing educational projects were to participate. Data was analysed descriptively using descriptive statistics and tables as appropriate. The findings showed that budgetary allocation, stakeholder involvement, training and strength of the monitoring team influence M&E systems. Budgetary allocation generated a mean of 1.98, training had a mean of 2.05 while strength of the monitoring team had a mean of 2.59. Most respondents were neutral on the participation of stakeholders (mean 2.82). It was established that most organisations set aside adequate funds for M&E with 34% setting aside 5-10%. 50.6% of respondents agreed that the project budget is adequate. The study also established that there is a strong positive correlation between the participation of stakeholders and prudent use of funds (r=0.643). There was also a strong positive relationship between frequency of training and competence (r=0.617). This shows that for organisations to achieve the desired level of competence in their staff, they must invest in training. The study recommends the need for more involvement of stakeholders in M&E planning, data collection and reports presentation. There is also need to empower M&E teas to enhance team work in monitoring activities. Lastly, the study recommends the harmonization of the M&E body of knowledge to ensure that there is industry standard in the use of terms, tools and techniques.
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