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Meta-evaluation and synthesis review 2016


In 2016 we conducted a review of 26 evaluation reports, covering our work in specific countries and individual programmes.

VSO meta-evaluation cover

Key findings about volunteering

  • VSO interventions made people's lives better by improving the quality of and access to services in education and health.
  • Volunteers are often crucial in encouraging collaboration and developing new networks.
  • Our contribution to change is more complex than suggested by the existing Global Theory of Change.

Key finding about the evaluations

  • The majority of the reports written and conducted by VSO staff scored 'minimum' standard, which performed better than externally authored ones.
  • Evaluations rated fairly well at including the perspectives of primary actors in the evidence. 
  • Evaluations were still weak on involving the people we are trying to help from the beginning of the evaluation.

Read the full report and recommendations [PDF]