As per the original design of the programme, in the Description of the Action (DoA), it is underlined that in many vocational training centres (VTC), lunch is provided to apprentice students. Some of the expenses in this regard are covered by the general budget of MoNE and a significant part of it is paid by the owner of the workshop and professional chambers.
As the capacity (number of newly enrolled apprentice students) in VTCs is aimed to be increased by the contributions of the programme, it was foreseen that there might be a possibility that the lunch services provided in this regard would be inadequate. In order to eliminate this possibility and keep the standards, support measures were envisaged for VTCs for the provision of lunch services to the apprentice students at school settings. This support was planned to be provided based on the number of apprentices in the programme.
However, due to the consequences related to COVID-19 pandemic such as school closures, the support could not be delivered as explained above. During the first months of 2021 and the whole of 2020 when the schools were totally closed, apprentice students -except for the full closure periods- continued their practical trainings in the companies. For the mentioned reasons and respecting the principle of the “best interest of child”, the lunch support foreseen in DoA, was planned to be distributed as food vouchers with a change in the implementation modality, without any further delays. This support is mainly object to ensure apprentices to continue their training and to reduce the risk of dropouts.
Following the selection of the service provider (Sodexo) in the second year of the programme implementation, provision of food vouchers has been initiated for the newly enrolled apprentice students starting from 2021-2022 academic year. All related distribution processes are carried out by the implementing partner EDUSER in close coordination and collaboration with vocational training institutions and in accordance with the implementation framework developed by the programme. All newly enrolled Syrian apprentice students and newly enrolled Turkish apprentice students below the age of 19 who are selected based on the set criteria indicated in the implementation framework are provided with this support.
Given the fact that it is a huge operation covering 12 programme provinces, 36 vocational training centres and thousands of individual apprentices, the distribution and utilisation of food vouchers has been closely monitored by the programme through the support of VTCs’ administrations. Following the commencement of the support in the beginning of 2022 and after 8 months of implementation, as of August 2022, 12.442 unique apprentice students (66% Syrians, 11% female) have been provided with food vouchers. However, reportedly some students seem to be passive in the system and 29% of the food voucher recipients has not spent the loaded amount yet. There are various reasons for the non-utilisation/spending and thus the management of the programme planned to carry out a case study in the form of a post distribution survey.
With this background, the planned case study aims to analyse the efficiency and effectiveness of the food voucher support by better understanding and exploring the following guidance questions:
How the support mechanism was planned?
How the support mechanism has been implemented so far?
What kind of challenges and subsequent consequences have been faced with so far both by the supply (programme management) and demand (apprentice students, VTCs) side?
What kind of mitigation measures been taken to overcome the challenges for smoother operations?
Are there any good practices in the support mechanism that can be replicated in similar interventions?
Lessons learnt and recommendations for further improvement
The study also targets to collect data on the patterns on usage and potential effects of the support on apprentice students’ academic and social lives by putting special emphasis on gender, age and nationality disaggregated data. Findings of the study will guide the programme management while conceptualising a similar support mechanism within a potential follow up phase-VET4JOB 2.
Project or context description
the Overall Objective of VET4JOB is “to improve sustainable livelihoods and employment prospects for the refugees and host communities, by supporting their skills development through apprenticeship and vocational education training in line with labour market needs”. In accordance with the suggested priorities in livelihoods of the refugees’ updated assessment needs, the ESSN Strategy and the current national Technical and Vocational Education and Training Strategy, the programme focuses on the following three specific objectives (SO):
SO 1: Resilience of Syrian refugees and host communities strengthened through apprenticeship and vocational trainings.
SO 2: Child labour eradication efforts strengthened through apprenticeship and vocational trainings.
SO 3: Social and economic integration of Syrian refugees facilitated.
Programme’s primary focus is on ESSN beneficiaries; SuTP and host communities, with a view to ensure social cohesion from a complex sensitivity perspective in line with the Commission Implementation Decision dated 18.07.2019, under FRIT. In this regard, in terms of average ratio, the VET4JOB programme targets to reach 60% Syrian and 40% host community participation in both apprenticeship and non-formal training.
Financed under the second tranche of FRIT, the VET4JOB programme has an implementation period from 01 January 2020-31 December 2023. It is implemented in 12 provinces; Adana, Ankara, Bursa, Gaziantep, Hatay, İstanbul, İzmir, Kahramanmaraş, Kayseri, Kocaeli, Konya, Mersin by EF and its local implementing partner EDUSER in cooperation with the Ministry of National Education, Directorate General for Vocational and Technical Education (MoNE DGVET) at central level and with 36 vocational training institutions at local level and with the Confederation of Turkish Tradesmen and Craftsmen (TESK) and its sub-organisations in the field.
The study is planned to be carried out by two consultants; one international consultant with significant review, evaluation, assessment, post distribution monitoring experience. And one national consultant with experiences in conducting relevant quantitative and qualitative assessments.
International consultant shall have the following profile:
University degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in a field relevant to the assignment, for example in public administration, political science, social sciences, economics, international studies,
Prior experience of data processing, analysis and reporting with demonstrable experience in preparing reviews and reports on post-distribution monitoring of humanitarian and development interventions on behalf of EU and other multilateral and bilateral organisations
Work experience with social-scientific research methods (quantitative and qualitative, and participatory methods),
Excellent analytical and report-writing skills,
Full command of oral and written English. Turkish and/or Arabic would be asset.
National consultant shall have the following profile:
Academic background in a field relevant to the assignment, for example in gender studies, public administration, political science, social sciences, economics, international studies,
Familiarity with vocational education & training particularly on apprenticeship training in Turkey,
Qualitative and quantitative research skills,
Full command of English and Turkish. Arabic would be asset.
Please see the attached Terms of Reference for more details on the mission
Selection criteria for applications
The selection process for candidates will be based on the following criteria:
Candidate’s experiences linked with the expert mission.