Project Profile

Evaluation of the Humanitarian Migrants to Israel (HMI) Program

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Project Name

Evaluation of the Humanitarian Migrants to Israel (HMI) Program

client/Funding Partner

US Department of State Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (PRM)

Prime Contractor

Resonance

Partner Organizations 

Management Systems International (MSI)

Country

Israel

Time Period

September 2018 - March 2019

Challenge

The Department of State Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (DOS/PRM) Humanitarian Migrants to Israel (HMI) Program supports humanitarian migrants as they resettle in Israel upon leaving the Former Soviet Union, Eastern Europe, Africa, and other regions where they have experienced discrimination and prejudice. HMI is implemented by the United Israel Appeal (UIA) through the Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI). UIA/JAFI manage a network of absorption centers for humanitarian migrants throughout Israel. The centers seek to integrate migrants into the larger Israeli society: They offer temporary residence, Hebrew language instruction and cultural education, and support in securing new livelihoods and affordable housing. The majority of humanitarian migrants arrive from the Former Soviet Union and Ethiopia, and they encounter different challenges to integration.

Despite its long tenure, the HMI Program had not previously undergone a comprehensive performance and process evaluation. DOS/PRM sought to understand how PRM, UIA, JAFI and other partners can optimize efforts to prepare humanitarian migrants for successful integration into Israeli society as well as how the program can most effectively monitor and measure its success.

Solution

DOS/PRM contracted Resonance, and its subcontractor MSI, to conduct a performance evaluation using a mixed methods design of the HMI Program’s success in providing integration-related services to humanitarian migrants from 2016-2018. The evaluation consisted of:

  • A comprehensive desk review and analysis of best practices in local integration of migrants, including an analysis of HMI program documents and reporting.
  • Field-based data collection in Israel, including site visits to absorption centers and data collection with center staff, humanitarian migrants, and HMI program leadership.
  • An evaluation report and debriefings on findings, conclusions, and recommendations on the effectiveness of HMI’s efforts to prepare migrants for successful integration as well as efforts to measure progress and success.

Key Results

  • We collected and analyzed data from November to December 2018, conducting a total of 83 key informant interviews and focus group discussions, representing a total of 173 individuals (migrants and HMI program staff).
  • Our team produced an evaluation report for UIA, JAFI, and DOS/PRM with data visualizations and accompanying briefings with 15 actionable recommendations, supported by empirical evidence and triangulated with desk review findings. Since the evaluation, UIA and JAFI have implemented several of our recommendations, particularly in regard to their monitoring approach.
  • We produced a monitoring report that assessed current HMI performance indicators and the monitoring and evaluation system to respond to those indicators. We offered targeted recommendations for future performance and outcome monitoring for HMI and indicator reporting to PRM.
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