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Targeting the Extreme Poor Guidance Note shiree | December 2011


Guidance Note

Targeting the Extreme Poor

shiree Version 2 December 2011

The Purpose of this Guidance Note Shiree‟s concentration on poverty alleviation for the extreme poor represents a new focus for many NGOs in Bangladesh. The extreme poor are unlikely to have been previously engaged in NGO interventions, and most NGOs have little experience targeting or working with these groups. Shiree‟s experience has found that new partners have often struggled at effective targeting in the initial stages. As they have developed good targeting procedures, however, and with increased understanding of extreme poverty, they have improved their targeting efficiency. The graph below shows the percentage (%) of mis-targeted households at various phases of verification of shiree BHHs. As you can see, targeting effectiveness improved very quickly with improved guidance and experience.

*Note –missing data re. DSK since phase 2 There are many different ways to select extreme por households, and shiree‟s partner NGO have undertaken slightly different approaches. This Guidance Note therefore simply outlines the major steps in shiree‟s selection process, and outlines a recommended 6-step process to targeting the extreme poor (adapted from shiree‟s Scale Fund Round 1 partner, Save the Children UK). STEP 1 – DEVELOP LOCATION-SPECIFIC SELECTION C RITERIA AND FINALISE WITH SHIREE NGOs are requested to develop a list of criteria of extreme poverty which is relevant to the local context and beneficiary group. A first draft of this list would have been included in the project memorandum, and should include: Essential criteria: These are indicators that are prevalent for all extreme poor people in the area (or of the targeted beneficiary group). They often centre on underlying themes like food security or ownership of assets. Examples from shiree partners include „Household income of less than 1500BDT/month‟ and „Owns less than 5 decimal of land‟. Supplementary criteria: These are additional indicators, which help to expand on the contextual understanding of extreme poverty in the area. They are not essential for selection, but will apply to a number of households, and reflect the vulnerability of households. Examples from shiree partners include: „Female-headed Household‟, and „Household dependent on the work of a child‟.

Example Selection Criteria: Essential Criteria HH income less than Tk. 1500 per month. Income generating productive assets worth under Tk. 3000. No more than 2 meals/day for 4 months a year. No access to or member of financial network or MFI. Not owner of cultivable land

Supplementary Criteria Sale advance labour at lower wage or force to migrate for work Chronic illness of main income earner Widow/divorced/separated and abandoned woman as head of HH One earner in the household. Ethnic minority

The proposed list must be shared with shiree for approval. Good Practice: 

Conduct community analysis with field officers and other stakeholders in which they identify the different income quartiles of their communities and the common characteristics of each one. This should involve the whole community, with the findings written up on brown paper. The facilitator should take care to ensure involvement from poorer household members and women

In identifying areas for selection draw on working knowledge, available information sources on geographic distribution of extreme poverty, and from staff‟s observations when looking for the extreme poor.

When selecting working areas, consider time and resource costs, and plan around these. Plan the targeting process in relation to project cycles and graduation models.

STEP 2 – IDENTIFICATION OF EX TREME POOR Develop a preliminary list of beneficiary households (BHHs) using information like: - Group based exercises (social mapping, wellbeing analysis, dependency analysis, participatory wealth ranking and focus group discussions (FGDs) – see appendices 1-5) - Key Informant Interviews (KII). - Engaging stakeholders. Good Practice  Encourage the use of participatory approaches (and involving children). Conduct transect walks (see appendix 6) and door-to-door visits to verify or investigate the possession of physical assets and land. Undertake KIIs with identified respondents.  Consider and respect community and gender dynamics. Create an environment where the selection process and criteria, and project limitations, are transparent and clearly communicated to participants. STEP 3 – VALIDATION PROCESSES AND PROFILING FDGs and participatory selection activities may not always be 100% accurate. Some individuals included on the list may not fulfil the criteria, and some extreme poor people may have been missed out. This step is a first-level validation of the extreme poor household situation in more detail. This can be done by the project team using tools like: - Transect walks (see appendix 7) - Door-to-door visits.

Good Practice:  Make sure essential and supplementary selection criteria reflect local circumstances.  Maintain sensitive behaviour and display respect when questioning households. Adopt a style of natural conversation rather than interrogation. STEP 4 – FURTHER VALIDATION W ITH LOCAL INSTITUTIONS This step involves further validation of the proposed BHH list with the local government, NGOs and MFIs (both included and excluded). This ensures that information collected is accurate, and that BHHs are neither involved in MFI or other DFID-funded programmes etc. Good Practice:  Triangulate findings with other sources (e.g. previous lists of landless peoples) through consulting with a broad range of stakeholders including NGOs, MFIs, local government representatives, local elites, religious leaders, and community members. STEP 5 – SUBMISSION OF PROPOSED BHH LIST FOR VERIFICATION Another independent group or institution should be assigned to validate the selection. When the proposed list has been finalised by NGOs, and validated to a desired standard, the list should be submitted to this organization. In the case of shiree funded NGOs, all lists should be submitted to shiree, and your programme manager will arrange a verification. In shiree‟s verification process, a team will visit a sample of the submitted list (randomly chosen) to ensure that the selected BHHs meet the designed criteria. 95% of the sample must meet the agreed criteria, for the BHH list to be approved. A similar process should be undertaken by other independent institutions who undertake verification. Good Practice:  The shiree team will make sure to take into account the productivity of assets owned, as well as inflation and the costs of living in a given area.  WBA with dependency analysis that has been done initially could be used again for verification according to the indicator and selection criterion STEP 6 – TAILOR PROJECT PLANS FOR HOUSEHOLD TO HOU SEHOLD CAPABILITIES AND VULNERABILITIES Make sure that the process of beneficiary selection and verification feeds back into project design. Have issues about extreme poverty been identified through the process? Have issues regarding income-generating activity (IGA) options been identified? Make sure these are incorporated into project plans, and that different beneficiaries with different capabilities and vulnerabilities receive support according to these capacities and constraints. Good Practice:  

Consider households‟ abilities to engage with project inputs, and different levels of vulnerability to falling further into extreme poverty, and tailor support accordingly. If necessary, acknowledge sub-categories of the extreme poor, and design different interventions according to the different categories. If it is identified that some BHHs may struggle with the proposed intervention due to a lack of physical capacity, consider creating an alternative „graduation stream‟ (see shiree‟s Guidance Note titled „IGAs for Less Physically Capable Beneficiaries‟). If BHHs can benefit from increased access to social protection or safety nets, see shiree‟s Guidance Note titled „Advocating for the Extreme Poor with Local Government Institutions‟.

APPENDICES Below are a number of step-by-step guides relating to various social analysis exercises which can be used when targeting the extreme poor. They are intended as practical exercises and should be implemented in the field directly with targeted communities. The following exercises are adapted from work by shiree‟s Scale fund round 1 partner, CARE, especially their “Social Analysis Handbook”, compiled by their Social Analysis and Learning Team. This is a longer document which covers many different social analysis techniques, including gender analysis and climate vulnerability. It will therefore be useful beyond the scope of simply targeting the extreme poor as is laid out here. APPENDIX 1– SOCIAL AND RESOURCE MAPPING Making a community map is a great introductory method and is therefore an ideal way to get started. The map can show resources, activities, problems and opportunities. It also depicts the dimension and scope of the issues that are to be investigated. Description A social map of the village is a map that is drawn by the residents and which shows the social structures and institutions found in an area. It provides an up-to-date household listing which can be used for well-being analyses or when ranking a households wealth. It also shows the community‟s configuration, its boundary and all the major features as understood and known by the community. Mapping can place the community into groups that fall into different categories depending on their respective priorities. This leads to discussion, negotiation and reconciliation of priorities. It also helps us to learn about social and economic differences between the households. Valuable information over and above that shown on scientifically produced maps can be obtained from maps drawn by local people. These maps show the perspective of the drawer and reveal much about local knowledge of resources, land use and settlement patterns, or household characteristics. In short, mapping is critical to understanding the boundaries and characteristics of the community involved. Overall objectives: 1. To identify local resources that could be utilised as an immediate economic gain for the community. 2. To identify local social issues that cause unpleasant or unwanted phenomena in the community while searching for solutions through immediate community orientated action. 3. To interact with the community to create a sense of realization, organizing them into collective action whilst building solidarity. Materials: chalk powder of different colours, vipp card, brown paper sheets, scissors, tape and glue. Preparation for the exercise: 1. Inform the people of the purpose of the meeting - particularly the extreme poor – while ensuring that all segments of the para participate. 2. Meet with people to get a sense of the number of households and population 3. Identify a suitable place in which all residents are comfortable (a neutral place, e.g. not in front of an elites‟ house), including the poorest and most vulnerable, for example single, widowed, divorced, abandoned women; 4. Find out which day and at which time most people are free and available, 5. Inform as many households as possible when and where the meeting will be held.

Facilitation process for the exercise Step 1- Introduction and objectives: a) Greet all of the participants and get them to introduce themselves and each other b) Explain the objectives of the session: „the purpose is to understand the social arrangement of the para and how the local resources are utilized in the community‟. Step 2- Laying out boundary of para and marking key resources a) Conduct a transect walk with participants in the para and get a sense of the layout and resources such as the location of roads, ponds, bamboo bushes, schools, maddrasas, mandirs, tube wells, etc. During the transect walk ask questions about the condition and access of resources, and the location of the landlords, salishker/influencing persons and poor people‟s residences. b) Ask a participant to draw a large map of the para into the ground, so large that people can move into the map easily. c) Place a rock or leaf on the map to represent a central and important landmark and then ask the participants to draw the boundaries of the village. d) Ask the participants to draw other things on the map that are important using different colors of chalk powder to mark roads, boundaries, rivers and ponds. Don‟t interrupt the participants unless they stop drawing. Participants may use large plants to mark bamboo bushes and grass to indicate crop lands. The facilitator can also use vipp cards to mark schools, madrasas, mandirs and tube-wells. e) Once they stop, you can ask whether there is anything else of importance that should be added. f) When the map is completed, facilitators should ask the participants to describe it. Ask questions about anything that is unclear. NB - Maps may include infrastructure (roads, houses, buildings, bridges, etc); water sites and sources; agricultural lands (crop varieties and locations); soils, slopes, elevations; forest lands; grazing areas; shops, markets; health clinics, schools, churches; special places (sacred sites, cemeteries, bus stops, shrines, etc) Step 3 – Marking the social structures of the para a) Make small cards in different colours to indicate the households of different classes of people – such as rich (yellow), middle (blue), poor (green) and extreme poor (red). b) Put the names of different households on the cards, asking the participants to indicate which color each household should be. c) Request the participants to place each card in its appropriate position within the map.

d) Ask participants to mark landlords, money lenders, women headed households, salishker, influencing/prominent person, gusties, and safety net receivers. This will give a clearer picture of the social dynamics of the community. e) Ask one participant to summarize the map Step 4 – Questions and interaction To create an environment which is conducive to discussion on access to resources and livelihoods of the poor in the para the facilitator should ask questions like:  Where do the poor reside?  Where do they work?  Where do they seek help in times of crisis and whether the assistance is effective?  What sort of relationships have formed between the prominent person of the community and the participants?  How are the safety net programs distributed into the community?  How are local resources used and who gets priority and why?  What resources are abundant  What resources are scarce?  Does everyone have equal access to land?  Do women have access to land?  Do the poor have access to land?  Who makes decision on land allocation? All of the questions should be open ended, allowing ample space for interaction among the participants to discuss an appropriate response. Importantly, poor men and particularly women should be encouraged to speak out. Step 5 – Documentation a) Ask some men and women to transfer the information from the ground onto a large sheet of brown paper b) Add the name of the exercise, the date and a legend to help explain the findings. This could be used in the future for monitoring tools and courses of action. Hints: · If people find it difficult to understand this tool, it will be helpful to draw a simple example for them. · During the whole process, take care to ensure that once somebody has given a statement, you ask the others whether they agree, disagree or want to add something. · The notetaker must ensure that all information is documented · The purpose of the social map must be very clear to all participants. Make sure that the participants do not have wrong expectations. For example they might think that the poor households will get food donations, which is completely wrong. · Social mapping needs good and well prepared facilitation. Be aware that some of the issues that might be discussed could be sensitive issues for the group. · Make sure that the objective of having all households shown on the map will be achieved. - One alternative method is for individuals or small groups to each make a separate map, then, as a group exercise later, all the small groups of individuals prepare a large map (eg using newsprint or flip chart paper) combining and synthesizing what is included on all the maps.

APPENDIX 2 – WELL-BEING ANALYSIS Conducting a wellbeing and dependency analysis is fundamental to understanding the community, including its level of poverty, how different people experience poverty and marginalization, as well as relations between rich and poor and how these are structured. Wellbeing analysis is an important participatory method that captures people‟s perceptions of poverty and identifies different classes and interest groups with whom problems and desired activities can be explored. The wellbeing analysis outlined here is „subjective‟, with each community defining its own criteria.1 However, the analysis outlined here will allow the projects to use the exercise to identify its „target‟ population from the bottom two or three categories of households. Overall objectives: 1. Understand the class composition of the community and the extent of wealth, poverty and marginalization; 2. Identify interest groups (widows, rickshaw van pullers, agricultural day laborers, etc); 3. To identify the poorest households in need of VGD/VGF cards, ring slabs, or other state funded schemes; 4. To identify people trapped in loans, advanced wages, and micro-credit. Materials: flip chart, markers, vipp card, brown paper sheets, scissors, tape and glue. Preparation for the exercise: On the first visit the Facilitator will: 1. Conduct a transect walk of the hamlet to explore the number of neighborhoods (e.g. north hati, south hati, etc.), 2. Meet with people to get a sense of the number of households and population 3. Inform the people of the purpose of the meeting - particularly the extreme poor – while ensuring that all segments of the para participate. 4. Identify a suitable place in which all residents are comfortable (a neutral place, e.g. not in front of an elites‟ house), including the poorest and most vulnerable, for example single, widowed, divorced, abandoned women; 5. Find out which day and at which time most people are free and available, 6. Inform as many households as possible when and where the meeting will be held. 7. Inform the people of the purpose of the meeting - particularly the extreme poor – while ensuring that all segments of the para participate. NB: If the community is small – 25 hh to 50 hh – then a large percentage of households (60-80 percent) can be present; if the community is large – 50 hh – 120 hh – then the percentage of households will be smaller. Most importantly, there must be several people from households of each of the hati/para‟s neighborhoods. It is also important to make sure that the people from each of the


In some communities there may be very wealthy households (e.g. land owners with large land holding or ponds, and businesses; whilst in others, the richest families own only 1-2 acres.

neighborhoods represent a cross section of the various classes. The latter is to avoid that only rich and middle people are representing the community. Facilitation Process of the WBA Step 1 – Introduction and Objective a) Walk through each of the hamlet‟s neighborhoods and call people for the planned meeting at the pre-arranged location b) Greet all the participants, and ask them to introduce themselves and each other; 2 c) Explain the objective of the session: 'the purpose is to understand the economic and social condition of the residents of the community‟. NB: It is important to be very clear in the beginning that the NGO is not there to make a list to provide relief or hands-out, rather the findings of this exercise will help to organize and involve the poorest households in its activities and development processes. Step 2 – Capturing Each Household and the “Invisible Poor” a) Ask the audience to write each household‟s head name on a card, beginning with the north end or the west end of the community all the way to the south end or east end to make sure that each household is accounted for. The definition of household should be explained as a „khana‟ or a „chula‟. NB: Generally, rural people only consider men or single women as the head of household, but for future development interventions it is important to also put the woman‟s (wife/mother) name. b) Provide the participants with pens and cards to write the names on each card and double check that no household has been missed. In many hatis/ para there are women who do not have a homestead and therefore will not be counted in this process. Therefore, it is important to ask, if there are any women who are working as maid servants and living in well-off people‟s homes to ensure that these women are counted and can then be involved in development activities. Step 3 – “Classification” a) Ask the participants how many classes - based on economic and social position - are in the para. Most likely the classes that emerge will be rich, middle and poor; b) Give the name cards to the group to place into the three classes. Each name card should be discussed in terms of why that name is placed into its respective class. This process will lead to debates amongst the participants and the facilitators should allow the debate to continue so as to lead to a constructive consensus. During this process, it is likely that new classes (e.g. lower middle, extreme poor, upper middle) will emerge. These should be added and the name cards that do not fit into rich, middle, or poor, should be placed into the new categories c) Ask the participants to mark the name cards of women-headed households, so that they can easily be identified as an interest group later on; similarly, depending on the project‟s objective, ask the participants to denote name cards of households that seasonally migrate. Seasonal migration is important for facilitators to know as this affects the availability of the households to participate, but it is also an indicator of poverty. Cautionary measures to consider


Regardless of the ‘target’ group, it is important that both women and men are participating in this exercise. This is because women, especially middle and better off women, tend to be less informed, because of their limited mobility and involvement in ‘men’s affairs’ (economic, political, social) and therefore may not know the extent of wealth of the families that live around them.

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It is likely that individuals who are powerful in the community will try to dominate/interrupt/or even control the session in order to steer the discussion in such a way that members of their own kin or clan, or their laborers, sharecroppers, etc. get access to the resources that NGOs are bringing. It is important to „deal‟ with such individuals by taking them aside and doing an exercise or an interview that taps their knowledge of the locality, thus removing them from the session. Ensure that each facilitating team to have one person that takes the children aside and plays games, or undertakes an exercise that looks at the community from the perspective of the children. Ensure that women and men from all classes participate and contribute to the wellbeing analysis and that there is interaction between the participants to determine which category the name cards are to be placed, thus collectively deciding on the characteristics of each class grouping. This will ensure a more accurate wellbeing analysis. It is best that the facilitators do not undertake the wellbeing analysis in the first few days of „entering‟ a community, rather they should get to know the place and make sure that the community understands the goals and objectives of the project. This will avoid the expectation of handouts.

APPENDIX 3 – DEPENDENCY ANALYSIS Description The dependency analysis builds on the wellbeing analysis and provides a basis for exploring dependency relations between groups and individuals. This analysis enables the staff to consider interest groups that can then discuss specific dynamics between groups (e.g. landlords and laborers) and the various forms of exploitation in greater detail while considering strategies to collectively extricate themselves from these types of relationships. Objective 1. To understand the economic (dependency) relations between rich and poor, and middle and poor, finding ways to reduce these vertical dependencies; The Process of the Exercise 1. Ask what are the arrangements are between rich, middle, poor and extreme poor in order to explore the relationship between classes. Examples may include purchasing/selling labor, sharerearing livestock, money lending or borrowing of basic staples and child care 2. Draw arrows, connecting each class to signify the relationship between them 3. Actively engage the participants in a discussion around forms of remuneration and „bondedness‟ which will reveal important mechanisms of exploitation and highlight the vertical (patron-client relations) or horizontal (solidarity) lines between and within classes 4. Get one of the participants to summarize what has been learned in the session APPENDIX 4– FOCUS GROUP DISCUSSI ONS There may be a range of experiences and opinions among members of the community or there may be sensitivity in divulging information to outsiders or to others within the community. This is where a focus group discussion can be useful. 1. Organize a facilitation team of two or three facilitators, with one leading the discussion and another making a record.

2. Decide on some discussion topic, these should be fewer than for the general community inventory. 3. Conduct separate sessions for the different interest groups and record their contributions carefully 4. Bring the individual groups together to share as groups their special concerns. It is important to be careful here. While you recognize the different interest groups in the community, you do not want to increase the differences between the groups - to widen the schism. NB: You are not trying to make all the different groups the same as each other, but to increase the tolerance, understanding and co-operation between them. Special focus groups gives you the opportunity to work separately with different groups that may find it difficult at first to work together; but you must work towards bringing them together.

APPENDIX 5 – WEALTH RANKING This is a particularly useful method of (1) discovering how the community members define poverty, (2) to find who the really poor people are, and (3) to stratify samples of wealth. This is best done once you have built up some rapport with the community members. A good method here is to make a card the name of each of the households in the community on it. Select some members of the community. Ask them to put these cards into groups according to various measures of wealth and to give their rationale (reasons) for the groupings. How they categorize members of the community, and the reasons they give for making those categories and for putting different households into each category, are very revealing about the socio-economic makeup of the community. The most common version of this technique involves a series of individuals, a focus group of community members, ranking their entire community (or a particular section of the community if there are too many households to rank it all-say more than 100-or if the participants are familiar with only their own neighborhood). The PRA facilitators introduce the technique using local terms for wealth and poverty and encourage participants to first discuss how they define these terms and how they would describe a poor household or a rich household (that is, their criteria for assessing a household's relative wealth). Carry out the exercise with a few key informants who know the community well. Key Questions: 1. What are local perceptions of wealth, well-being and inequality? 2. What socio-economic groupings are there in the community and who belongs in what group? Steps: 1. A numbered list is made of all the households in the community (see social map) and the name of each household head and the household number is written on a separate card. 2. A number of key informants who know the village and its inhabitants very well are asked to sort the cards in as many piles as there are wealth categories in the community, using their own criteria. 3. After sorting, ask the informants for the wealth criteria for each pile and differences between the piles. Assure the informants of confidentiality and do not discuss the ranks of individual families, so as not to cause bad feelings within the community. 4. List local criteria and indicators derived from the ranking discussion.

Analysis -The actual ranking is done using card sorting. -If possible, the ranking should be repeated with different participants and the results compared, looking for any large discrepancies or differences of opinion. Differences in wealth criteria, for example between men and women, should also be noted. -The results should be cross-checked with secondary data and by follow-up interviews with key informants. -The wealth ranking results for each household can be translated into numerical scores. This will assist with direct comparisons between the different informants' rankings and to calculate the "average scores" for an overall ranking. However, even without this extra level of analysis, the results can prove very insightful. -An alternative method, if cards are not available or if participants prefer, is to use stones to represent the different households. As the participant does the ranking he or she places the stone in the appropriate pile and tells the facilitator which household the stone represents. The facilitator then notes the households in each pile and recites the lists back to the participant for a final check. APPENDIX 7– TRANSECT WALKS Systematic walks with key informants through an area, observing, listening, asking, seeking problems, solutions and mapping the finding onto a transect diagram. Procedure 1. Arrange a team of three or four member team to conduct a transect walk of the union, preliminarily gaining a clear picture of the area. The members of the team should visit different clusters of villages and/or paras 2. Walk around the union documenting the institutions (i.e. school, mashjid, madrasa, mandir, UP, health center, etc), infrastructure (roads, bazar, hat, ghat, protection wall, crop protection embankments) and resources (beels, cropping patterns and crop protection embankments), including taking note on where all are located. 3. Talk to the UP members of the village and/or para, teachers and villagers to assist with denoting rich and poor communities. 4. Marking where the chairman and prominent people reside and try to understand the Somage, migration and the economic situation of the village and/or para. 5. After the transect walk the facilitators will sit together in a pre determined place (like a teashop) to discuss their findings. 6. Invite the chairman, elites and people who have a good understanding of the neighborhood to a meeting to be held on the next day. This meeting is aimed at generating an understanding on whether the vallage and/or para is suitable for the project - whether the area is actually vulnerable and poor as per the information obtained previously. To do this, the participants should be asked to prepare a union map in a suitable place (i.e. at the UP premises, if enough space is available). It would be advantageous to have a person who understands maps. The team can consider inviting other projects, the secretary of UP, teachers and local people for their inputs.

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shiree Guidance Note - Targeting the Extreme Poor