It’s hard to believe that my year here with Nuru Kenya is coming to a close. The work I have done and the relationships I have made over the year have been some of the most rewarding and remarkable experiences I have ever had. In the past year I’ve watched our Kenyan M&E team of five nearly double to nine full-time staff while, at the same time, we conducted over three times the number of surveys and studies from the year before. The team’s capacity to prioritize research needs, design surveys and tools, create a detailed rollout plan, collect and enter data, and report findings back to programs only becomes more efficient and effective each month. I’ve been endlessly impressed by the team’s hard work and eagerness to learn more so that we can best serve our programs and the community at large.
Our data collection team has shown endless energy as the team manages enumerators, hiking all over the district to complete a record number of surveys each week with more attention to detail and accuracy. Back in the office our data entry staff have continually improved not only their computer skills and data entry speed, but also the ability to ensure quality data and strengthen feedback loops between the field and the office. Mwita Babere, our Data Advising and Research Manager, has kept the M&E program moving forward with researching and developing new surveys and methods to collect new or better data for our programs.
Over the last couple weeks I’ve been transitioning my work over to Patrick Coad, the new M&E Program Facilitator. Rogonga and I have been working closely with him so that he can advise and help move the program forward, toward the goal of the Nuru International staff exit and local self-sustainability. While there have been great improvements this past year, there still is much work to be done and many more challenges in the coming months. I’m confident though that Patrick’s previous work and academic experience with Rogonga’s strong leadership and the team’s capacity will lead to successful impact evaluations and good, data-driven decisions as Nuru Kenya continues to iterate, develop and grow.
I’m proud to have been part of a team so dedicated to improving individual performance but also ensuring that the information collected and reported is of the highest quality and utility for Nuru Kenya’s work. While I am sad to say goodbye to my coworkers, teammates, and friends, I am also excited to see what will happen next and what else the team will be able to achieve in the future.
Kelly Gannon has extensive NGO and research experience in Latin America, Haiti and New York City. She has an B.A. from Wake Forest University with a major in political science and a minor in Latin American studies. She received her M.A. in International Affairs from the New School University where she was also a research assistant. Kelly’s research focused on metrics for measuring economic and social rights, donor accountability, children’s rights, and global public health. Most recently, she worked in Kuria, Kenya as Nuru International’s M&E Program Facilitator, in New York as a consultant for the UNDP, in child welfare for the Vincent J Fontana Center for Child Protection, and on water and sanitation issues for charity: water.