The PPT is one of Pathways’ key monitoring tools, and was developed in 2013 to help track Pathways group members’ adoption of program-promoted practices. The PPT was adopted from a tool developed by CARE’s Strengthening the Dairy Value Chain (SDVC) program (also supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, like Pathways) in Bangladesh. The PPT is a process and a tool that enables groups to monitor their own progress while also enabling CARE to easily understand how groups are performing.
The PPT tool was designed, customized, and pilot tested by each Pathways country in 2013 for the country-specific value chains (Figure 1) to capture data on a) individual member adoption of targeted practices in domains related to sustainable agriculture, marketing, harvest and post-harvest, gender, etc. and b) group maturity to assess group governance, leadership, transparency, group marketing, and group input purchasing.
Figure 1. Country-specific Value Chains
CARE, in conjunction with Datassist, analyzed PPT data collected over the past year in order to generate reports and analyses of group maturity scores and overall adoption rates of countries’ improved practices in key domains, which include: soil and water management, input and land selection, use of inputs, planting, pest and disease management, harvest, post-harvest, marketing, and gender. Read more about the indicators included under each domain in Figure 2. Data was analyzed at both the national and global level, providing each Pathways Country Office with a country-level report and the entire Pathways program with a program-wide report. The first PPT Annual Report was published in April 2014.
Figure 2. Sample PPT Indicators
In order to creatively use information technology (IT) for agriculture, CARE partnered with Dimagi to develope a CommCare mobile-based application for the PPT. This application helps generate accurate information in real-time and provide timely solutions to women farmers by dramatically shortening internal feedback loops, improving responsiveness, increasing transparency, and enhancing accountability within the Pathways program. The CommCare application was pilot tested in India and Tanzania in the first phase of partnership with Dimagi this year, and will be further scaled up in the other Pathways countries in the coming years.
At the 7th International African Evaluation Association (AfrEA) Conference held in Cameroon in March 2014, CARE Mali Pathways’ PPT experience was shared with the wider development community – we are very excited about the progress that we have made, and many more such exciting events will follow to showcase our work around the PPT.