An independent review of PHF strategy in India conducted by New Philanthropy Capital is now available.
'PHF India Programme: Strategy Review' assesses the progress in each of the themes and aims set out in the India programme's strategy paper during the years 2005-10. These include the type of organisations that the Foundation aims to fund, the way in which the Foundation wants to work with its grantees, including their monitoring and evaluation, and also its wider sector aims, such as influencing other funders, sharing knowledge and building its networks.
A sample of documents - including project proposals, monitoring forms, financial budgets and evaluations - from 15 projects was assessed for progress against PHF's strategic aims. These documents were set against a list of core indicators that were designed to demonstrate the level to which the project adhered to PHF's strategic aims. The grading tool is included in the report.
The findings show that PHF has successfully met most of its strategic aims. In terms of 'project aims' it has developed a strong portfolio rooted in the needs of local areas, managed to move away from funding in big cities as well as smaller cities and towns, has increased its presence in the more deprived areas of India and retained its strong focus on vulnerable groups of people.
In terms of its partnership aims, PHF has taken steps to develop its networks through conferences and workshops in Jaipur and Kolkata, and is developing its wider sector aims through funding training and capacity support. The report has found that there is still large potential for capacity building in the sector as a whole and for further development of PHF's networks.
Over the five years PHF's portfolio grew by 60 per cent, both in terms of the number of grants made and the total size of grants approved each year. The review notes that, "overall, partners feel stronger for having been funded by PHF".
The review was conducted by New Philanthropy Capital, a consultancy dedicated to helping funders and charities achieve greater impact. It uses data drawn out from grantee documentation, field visits, a telephone survey and interviews with PHF staff, trustees, advisors, external experts and funders.