Citizens’ Voice Project (CVP)
May 27, 2011 – December 23, 2019

The Citizens’ Voice Project (CVP) was a civil society support project that sought the evolution of democratic governance by strengthening citizens’ voice, and public accountability in government planning, and decision-making.

Citizens’ Voice Project had the following three objectives:

  • Strengthened voice (policy advocacy).
  • Enhanced capacity (organizational development and targeted trainings).
  • Improved accountability (citizens’ oversight and public-private partnerships)

CVP awarded 364 grants to 224 civil society organizations for projects that covered 26 thematic areas and 2.6 million people were benefitted from the project. The grants were awarded through a rigorous, and competitive technical review system, which included: i) providing technical assistance to grantee organizations in project design, and development; ii) engaging in results-based monitoring, and evaluation of grantee projects; iii) enhancing organizational capacity of grantee organizations; and iv) formulating strategies to strengthen citizens’ voice, and public accountability in government planning, and decision making.

During the tenure of the project, 2,690,714 citizens, 16,865 CSOs, 4,075 district-level government officials, 11,363 local government representatives, 10,384 media persons, 1,729 minority people, 442 MNAs, 1,757 MPAs, 75 national-level government officials, 14,097 political parties workers, 11,066 potential candidates, 285 provincial-level government officials, 29 senators, 3,421 staff members, and 72,323 youth were engaged in various activities.

Promoting the Human Rights and Electoral Participation of People with Disabilities, Transgender People, and Women in Pakistan

September 14, 2017 – September 30, 2019

The Trust for Democratic Education and Accountability (TDEA) implemented a 24-month project with the United States Department of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labour (DRL) on Promoting the Human Rights and Electoral Participation of People with Disabilities (PWD), Transgender People, and Women in Pakistan.

The aim of the project was to enhance outreach, advocacy and engagement of PWDs, transgender persons and women with election authorities and political parties. Under the project, 15 civil society organizations (CSOs), dedicated to the rights of the marginalized segment of society, formed the Coalition for Inclusive Pakistan (CIP) to achieve their rights through greater participation in electoral processes. CIP, for the first time in Pakistan, made the election observation possible to be carried out by these groups. The unique findings and recommendations of the specialized election observation of General Election 2018 enabled CIP partners to sustain and enhance their advocacy with the election authorities, legislators, and political parties on a range of priority issues for each community of interest in electoral and political contexts.

During the lifetime of the project, 15 civil society organizations, 15 citizen observers, 125 women, 125 persons with disabilities and 125 transgender persons were reached out and helped engaged with the election authorities and political parties. Under the project, 15 civil society organizations (CSOs), dedicated to the rights of the marginalized segment of society, formed the Coalition for Inclusive Pakistan (CIP) to achieve their rights through greater participation in electoral processes. CIP, for the first time in Pakistan, made the election observation possible to be carried out by these groups.

Support to Democratic Institutions and Promotion of Human Rights in Pakistan

October 2017 – October 2019

TDEA provided technical support for the provision of capacity development and technical assistance services to advance the functioning of Pakistan parliamentary institutions, in particular the four provincial assemblies, through effective legislation, strengthened policy and budget oversight and enhanced representation. Activities were carried out in the four provincial capitals (Karachi, Lahore, Peshawar and Quetta). Support had also been extended to the Legislative Assemblies of Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan. The project had the following outcomes:

  • Strengthened institutional development process and frameworks of assemblies and better equipped elected representatives, select committees and other parliamentary bodies at the provincial level
  • Strengthened assemblies’ secretariats at the provincial level
  • Improved transparency and accessibility of provincial assemblies

Community Leadership Development Programme (CLDP)

April 15, 2017 – May 31, 2018

The Community Leadership Development Program (CLDP) was a 14-month program funded by Trócaire — the development agency of the Catholic Church in Ireland. TDEA implemented the project in eight districts: Mardan, Nowshera, Peshawar, Swabi and Swat in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Hyderabad, Jamshoro, and Matiari in Sindh province. The program was designed to focus on the issues of Gender Based Violence (GBV) and aimed to capacitate as well as engage elected local government representatives, and other community leaders to play a proactive role in addressing GBV.

During the course of the project, 522 local body representatives were trained with the help of five civil society organizations.

Women’s Action for Better Workplaces

December 1, 2016 – November 31, 2018

Women’s Action for Better Workplaces (WAction) project was funded by the Embassy of the Netherlands to enhance the capacities of women workers and organizations to negotiate and advocate with employers, policy-makers and legislators for improved working conditions for women. Five cross-sectoral alliances had been established in Lahore, Karachi, Peshawar, Quetta and Islamabad to take up issues with the concerned authorities.

Various labor standards demand that special consideration is awarded to women to cater to their specific needs at workplaces. Under WAction, TDEA carried out a thorough analysis of labor laws which had been used to set the tone for legislative recommendations.

During the first phase of WACTION project, 5,890 women workers were trained, and advocacy meetings were held with 50 legislators and political party leaders, with the support of four civil society organizations. As many as 61 government servants were engaged in meetings for reforms, 168 representatives of the civil society were trained, 70 political party workers, 66 teachers and 112 journalists were also given trainings on women related laws and labour department issues.

Deepening Democracy and Election Support in Pakistan (DESP)

July 1, 2016 – March 31, 2017

TDEA-FAFEN implemented a 9-month project titled Deepening Democracy and Election Support in Pakistan (DESP) through 32 member organizations from July 2016 to March 2017 to support time-sensitive actions to contribute to strengthening of electoral and parliamentary processes ahead of General Election (GE) 2018.

The project focused on continued oversight of electoral and parliamentary processes and evidence-based advocacy for improved enforcement of existing statutes as well as legal and policy reforms through proactive engagement with political parties, parliamentarians, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), civil society and media. In addition, the project sought encouragement of public debate, dialogue and discourse to strengthen a pro-democracy narrative in the country.

These actions focused on areas as important as improvement in the electoral rolls, under-registration of voters particularly women, minority and persons with disabilities, conflict mapping of electoral constituencies in an effort to design appropriate peace-building interventions ahead of General Election 2018, electoral literacy of citizens and key stakeholders, oversight of Parliament and provincial assemblies, and multi-stakeholder engagements to promote a pro-democracy narrative.

During the life of the project, 121,464 females and 8,805 male citizens were trained, 429 Persons with Disabilities, 22 transgender persons, 3,829 young male students, 3,133 young female students, 338 journalists, 660 civil society organizations, 73 political parties, and 473 observers were engaged in various project-related activities.

 

ILM Possible – Take a Child to School

February 12, 2014 – March 31, 2017

TDEA-FAFEN, Children’s Global Network (CGN) and School of Leadership Foundation (SOLF) collectively implemented the project — ILM POSSIBLE: Take a Child to School – in four provinces of Pakistan, Punjab (25 districts), Sindh (18 districts), Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (12 districts) and Balochistan (5 districts).

The aim of the project was to enroll 135,000 out-of-school children (between the ages of 5 and 11) primarily in Government Primary Schools, but also in private institutions if there were no state schools in the area, or if the government schools could not accept more students due to capacity problems.

The project was successful in increasing child enrollment, increasing the level of awareness to the right of education among the community, and in improving service delivery of education.

Under the project, TDEA-FAFEN monitored 6,000 schools, in which 51 civil society organizations participated and 60 individuals were trained. The number of students enrollment monitored was 84,187.

 

Citizens Action for Democratic Governance in Pakistan (CADGP)

May 01, 2015 – March 31, 2016

The Trust for Democratic Education and Accountability (TDEA) implemented Citizens’ Action for Democratic Governance (CADG) through the member organizations of the Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) from May 1, 2015 to March 31, 2016 in order to sustain and strengthen its core programme activities and prepare for a longer-term future programming. This project built on the successes of “Supporting Transparency, Accountability and Electoral Processes in Pakistan” (STAEP) programme and represented the planned core election-related programming and activities. TDEA-FAFEN, through this funding, worked to strengthen its key areas of election-related, institutional oversight and citizen demand work, knitting together its election and between-elections initiatives and building on its track record of uniquely successful electoral and democratic reform advocacy.

The project followed DFID support to the “Supporting Transparency, Accountability and Electoral Processes in Pakistan” project (2011-2014) and European Union’s Long-Term Election Observation and Oversight Project (2012-2014). Both projects were implemented by FAFEN. The primary focus of the programme will be on developing new, and strengthening existing relationships between rights-holders and duty-bearers, to enable citizens’ voices to be channeled into administrative, regulatory and legislative reforms, enabling improved electoral, legislative and local governance. These approaches will deliver increased value for money for donors and more sustainable civil society voice and accountability in Pakistan.

During the project lifeline, 234 field staff, 5,912 observers, 4,170 citizen volunteers, 3,400 civil society representatives, and 6,000 local government candidates were engaged.

Parliament Watch and Reforms Project

August 18, 2012 – December 17, 2014

The European Union funded the Parliament Watch and Reforms Project (PWRP) to observe the proceedings of the Senate and the National Assembly, and the 13 selected Standing Committees.

TDEA-FAFEN employed the services of professionals who observed the interventions of the parliamentarians on the floor of the house and reported back to the TDEA secretariat. Daily factsheets were prepared and disseminated among relevant stakeholders and uploaded on FAFEN’s website (www.fafen.org) and TDEA-FAFEN’s parliamentary information portal (www.openparliament.pk).

TDEA-FAFEN’s parliamentary information portal (openparliament.pk), is a one-stop window for all parliamentary interventions carried out on the floors of all six legislatures i.e. Senate, National Assembly, Punjab Assembly, Sindh Assembly, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly and Balochistan Assembly. The objective of developing such a portal is to bridge the gap between citizens and the elected representatives.

TDEA-FAFEN, on its own initiative and with the help of its partner organizations, is also observing the proceedings of all provincial assemblies and disseminating daily factsheets to relevant stakeholders. Its data analysts skim through the parliamentary data sent by their observers and after verification, place it on the portal for the use of any interested individual.

 

Education for All – Making it Possible

November 07, 2014 – August 15, 2015

TDEA-FAFEN implemented the ILM IDEAS project, “Education for All – Making it Possible” in all four provinces, Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) and Gilgit-Baltistan where civil society organizations have been working on different education projects on voice and accountability.

The project activities included experience sharing and showcasing events where civil society organizations were invited to present their successful voice and accountability models that could be replicated at the national level for advocating for reforms in the education sector. These showcasing events were conducted in 18 locations across Pakistan where 201 organizations participated and presented their successful interventions under the voice and accountability criteria. Of the 201 organizations’ models, 11 models were shortlisted. These shortlisted models were validated by conducting Focus Group Discussions, Key Informant Interviews, Community Interviews and Group Interviews.

TDEA-FAFEN also launched countrywide media and citizens’ advocacy campaigns that improved the state of the education sector in Pakistan. The campaigns were developed on the basis of content that highlighted the successful voice and accountability interventions.

 

Long Term Election Observation and Oversight in Pakistan (LTEOOP)

December 21, 2012 – June 20, 2014

TDEA-FAFEN raised the standards of citizens’ election observation in Pakistan during the General Elections process in 2013 through its project Long Term Election Observation and Oversight (LETOOP). TDEA’s nationwide methodology was based on national election laws and procedures of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), Pakistan’s ratification in 2010 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the 2012 Declaration of Global Principles and Code of Conduct for Non-Partisan Election Observation and Monitoring by Citizen Organizations.

More than 360 district and constituency long-term observers (D-LTOs and C-LTOs) monitored the pre-election preparations and political campaign nationwide, and more than 130 D-LTOs monitored the post-election environment, including resolution of election result disputes. More than 40,000 short-term observers (STOs) on Election Day in every constituency monitored procedures during the voting, ballot counting and election result consolidation processes. An unprecedented Election Information Management System (EIMS) for frequent reporting of election-related observations to the public and election stakeholders and enabled robust advocacy for enforcement of election law and regulations as well as long-term post-election reform.

TDEA’s unprecedented election observation effort in 2013 involves more than 40,000 trained, non-partisan citizens in monitoring the Election Day in polling stations, with an average of 150 short-term observers (STOs) in each National Assembly constituency. All TDEA- FAFEN observers are accredited by the ECP and adhere to the ECP Code of Conduct for National Observers. They do not interfere with voters or the administration of elections.

All TDEA- FAFEN observation checklists are based on the Representation of the Peoples Act 1976, Conduct of Elections Rules 1977, and ECP handbooks for election officials. All election statements and reports are non-partisan and based on aggregated data and information from observers in a constituency or around the country. TDEA- FAFEN, STOs are not authorized to speak to the media or make any public statements based on their individual observations.

TDEA-FAFEN trained 400 citizen observers, interviewed 8,500 contesting candidates, and engaged with 20 political parties, 21 civil society organizations and one ECP official during the tenure of the project.

Supporting Transparency, Accountability and Electoral Processes in Pakistan (STAEP)

December 17, 2010 – August 31, 2014

The main focus of the project was to enhance the effectiveness of government in addressing the critical challenges to Pakistan by increasing citizen’s participation in ensuring transparency and accountability of elected and public institutions. The programme aimed to achieve the objectives including Citizens’ groups monitoring the performance of elected representatives and public institutions and raise demands. FAFEN’s activities included engagement through interactive meetings between citizens, elected representatives and other stakeholders and beneficiaries, citizens’ observation of some governance institutions, identification and development of reforms agenda by citizens and staff, registration facilitation, and trainings etc.

FAFEN facilitated seven rounds of constituency staff trainings focusing on conceptual knowledge and detailed implementation of the program, The oversight checklists were improved after consistent consultation and feedback received from Program Managers and constituency staff, Since August 2011, FAFEN’s partner organizations started entry of data in FAFEN Online Program Tracker after having special training round on FOPT. To minimize the risk of loss and ambiguities the data sets had been used that organizations had sent and entered by the constituency staff. The project facilitated 322,226 citizens or NIC registration, 522,715 women voters were mobilized, 10,000 citizen volunteers were trained, 40,000 observers were given election trainings, 23 political parties were engaged, while 1,247 candidates, 1,236 politicians, 35 civil society organizations and 400 filed staff were also engaged.

 

Election Violence Monitoring (EVM)

May 01, 2013 – December 31, 2013

The Election Violence Monitoring (EVM) project was a United States Institute of Peace (USIP) funded program that was focused on data collection from the media, as well as other sources, on incidents of electoral violence between January, and May 2013. TDEA-FAFEN produced a report based on its research into electoral violence, called “Triggers.” In addition to the report, and other publications, the project also produced television shows that highlighted the risk of electoral violence in selected districts.

 

Active Citizens Programme

February 1, 2012 – March 31, 2013

The Active Citizens Program (ACP), funded by the British Council, worked to train at least 6000 youth volunteer and encourage them to monitor schools and seek education sector reforms. 19 of the 35 member organizations of the Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) implemented the Active Citizens Programme (ACP) in 34 districts. FAFEN partners profiled the youth in their respective working units. Organizations were selected on the basis of the volunteer pool available to them. The program was implemented in two phases; in the first phase, 17 organizations implemented the program in 17 districts, and in the second phase 12 organizations carried out interventions across 17 districts.

Under the program, 6,000 volunteers and 19 civil society organizations were engaged.

 

Support for Free and Fair Elections in Pakistan

February 1, 2007 – February 20, 2009

The Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) conducted domestic election monitoring as part of the “Supporting Free and Fair Elections in Pakistan” program (SFAFEP), funded The Asia Foundation, ahead of the 2008 General Election. FAFEN, a network of civil society organizations (CSO), consisted of more than 30 non-partisan, non-governmental organizations from all provinces of the country.

FAFEN’s efforts to conduct nationwide election monitoring included observation of the pre-elections environment, Election-Day voting, counting, and tabulation procedures, and post-election announcement of results and resolutions of electoral disputes.

Nationwide, FAFEN mobilized about 16,000 polling stations observers (PSOs) to monitor Election Day events at about 8,000 randomly selected polling stations from among the 65,000 stations nationwide. In each constituency, approximately 30 polling stations were randomly selected, with each station requiring a team of two PSOs. The observers filled out a standardized checklist regarding the administration of the voting, counting, and tabulation processes on Election Day and afterward. Additional Mobile Observers (MOs) completed summary checklists of additional polling stations on Election Day.

 

Balochistan Community Policing Survey

December 24, 2008 – February 28, 2009

As part of the Asia Foundation’s Balochistan Community Policing Project baseline survey in eight districts (consisting of Quetta, Pishin, Ziarat, Khuzdar and Loralai, and three control groups districts consisting of Noshki, Killa Abdullah, and Harnai). FAFEN performed the following tasks:

  • Developed a methodology for random selection of Union Councils and 100 households in the eight target districts
  • Finalized the format of the survey questionnaire (provided by the Foundation)
  • Designed data entry and data cleaning of 800 survey questionnaires and sent data frequency tables in excel format to the Foundation electronically, according to best practices for data presentation
  • Generated cross-tabulation tables and graphs based on past experience of data analysis

 

Mapping of Human Rights Sector in Pakistan

March 15, 2009 – June 30, 2009

The Trust for Democratic Education and Accountability (TDEA) mapped the human rights sector in Pakistan, focusing on organizations operating at the national and provincial levels. The assignment consisted of the following:

  • Identification of organizations and service providers, both large and small, engaged in human rights work; identification of the work these organizations were doing or planned to do, their geographic area of coverage, sources of support, time spans of the project, objectives, target groups, stakeholders, etc.
  • Analysis of human rights-related initiatives in Pakistan and the gaps therein.
  • The information was designed to inform development practitioners, donors, and citizens about the services available and also helped organizations avoid duplication of efforts; contact information of all the organizations was also compiled.
  • The exercise also included a desk review, with all information verified with the organizations, and to the extent possible, obtained directly.

 

Developing and Disseminating a Nationwide Strategy for Local Government Election Observation

April 1, 2009 – June 30, 2009

The Trust for Democratic Education and Accountability (TDEA) developed a nationwide strategy to monitor local government (LG) elections in Pakistan. It included the development of observation methodology for both direct and indirect phases of LG elections, including possible clustering or sampling of polling stations on Union Council basis. A desk review of international and national best practices was also part of this exercise. A database developer analyzed software requirements and created the appropriate software and developed the database.

TDEA also wrote a detailed narrative description of each phase of its LG election observation that explained the methodological choices made. TDEA also developed a detailed work plan for the implementation of the methodology.

 

Mobilization of Women Voters in Pakistan Project

April 15, 2009 – March 29, 2010

Due to the delay in the local government (LG) elections originally scheduled after August 2009, FAFEN, modified the Women Voters Mobilization Project and carried out comprehensive observation of the pre-election process and assessing citizens’ perspectives on local issues and quality of service delivery being rendered by LG institutions.

The modification allowed FAFEN to draw multiple stakeholders’ perspectives vis-à-vis the ongoing public discourse on the future shape of LG institutions and related amendments to the local government ordinance. In addition, the project activities yielded qualitative and quantitative data on the performance of local governments during their tenure (2005-2009) through a systematic study in 34 districts carried out by the 13 member organizations. The study was the first of its kind that attempted a comprehensive look at LG processes.

The project activities were in line with FAFEN’s long-term program objectives. With this one-of-a-kind up-to-date research, it was able to intervene through advocacy initiatives locally and nationally using research-based recommendations on the need and scope of amendments to the Local Government Ordinance. This helped inform public discourse and enhanced the quality of multi-stakeholder advocacy initiatives in the area. In the long-run, FAFEN planned to use the findings of the study in its citizens’ education and constituency relations public information materials and trainings.

 

Baseline Study for Alternative Dispute Resolution Mechanisms in NWFP

September 3, 2009 – April 12, 2010

As part of The Asia Foundation’s Dispute Resolution in NWFP project baseline survey in seven districts including Peshawar, Nowshera, Mardan, Swabi, Haripur, Abbottabad and Mansehra. TDEA performed the following tasks:

  • Developed a methodology for random selection of 10 primary sampling units (PSU), i.e., polling stations of the Election Commission of Pakistan, in each of the target districts for the purpose of identifying a random selection of 100 households in each district (10 from each PSU).
  • Conducted district-wise rapid assessment of the functioning and caseloads of the police, Musalihat Committee (selected), Musalihat Anjumans (selected) and other dispute resolution mechanisms.
  • Designed and refined research tools for survey; prepared and pilot tested the database; and coded FGD tools and the framework of analysis.

 

Political and Electoral Violence, Education and Resolution Project

September 1, 2010 – August 31, 2010

The Political and Electoral Violence, Education and Resolution Project worked to develop and test a methodological framework for political and electoral violence monitoring and verification through community-based investigation and other sources, including media. This was done in an effort to develop a public record of data and analysis that could contribute to peace-building initiatives at local and national levels and help to prevent and manage electoral and political violence.

 

CNIC and Voter Registration Campaign in Seven Districts

September 1, 2009 – September 30, 2010

Legal identity is a critical and multifaceted issue situated at the intersection of human rights, demographic statistics, and administrative reform. Legal identity has wide-reaching implications. Access to resources, social services and economic opportunities are all linked directly or indirectly with the official proof of identity, i.e. computerized national identity cards (CNIC). However, not everyone is able to avail this facility, which may be due to various reasons including, but not limited to, cumbersome documentation, access, cultural barriers, lack of understanding and the associated fee.

At the time, the Election Commission of Pakistan was expected to declare the CNIC mandatory to cast vote in the next General Elections, which further increased the significance of this key document. NADRA and the ECP were also in the process of finalizing arrangement by virtue of which every new identity card would automatically be registered for voting as well. The changing ECP-NADRA dynamics made it an opportune time for venturing into a CNIC and voter registration campaign.

This project titled “CNIC & Voter Registration Campaign in Model Districts” aimed to conduct a focused advocacy campaign to decrease the male to female registration differentials in model districts. This was to be achieved in three phases. The first phase focused on data collection from NADRA and comparing it with FAFEN’s election data to compile a general trend vis-à-vis CNIC and voter registration. The next phase focused on conducting an assessment exercise in four districts to identify obstacles, hurdles and model districts to be selected for a focused advocacy campaign. Finally, assistance of unregistered individuals to register for CNIC in collaboration with NADRA constituted the last phase.