The Sabre Charitable Trust is a charity working to improve the lives of poor and marginalised children in Ghana. They focus particularly on improving children’s access to quality, early-years education, which involves building better schools and delivering transformational teacher training among other things.
Promising preschool practice in Africa
Their Transformational Teacher Training programme is multi-layered and involves working with trainers from local Colleges of Education, teachers and children in Ghana. To maintain and improve its impact, the charity regularly collects, collates and analyses field data to monitor participants’ progress, which is handed by their Monitoring, Evaluations and Learning (MEL) team.
The data collected by the MEL team informs the charity’s monthly and annual reports, which are sent to stakeholders and funders. Their work also highlights any success and challenges experienced, and generates important learning that inform the way they deliver the programme. This clever approach has already led to the programme been recognised by the World Bank’s Early Learning Partnership as a promising preschool practice in Africa.
As the programme expands, so has the need to monitor and evaluate its impact.
“Before acquiring Microsoft Office, the MEL team was limited to using Open Office, which didn’t have all of the tools they needed to effectively analyse the data collected,” says Katie Coles, Deputy Education Projects Manager at The Sabre Charitable Trust.
“The introduction of Microsoft Office has greatly increased the scope of statistical analysis and ways the data can be presented in our project reports. It has also helped us compile large text documents such as training manuals as part of our Transformational Teacher Training programme.”
Lucy Bermaa is a MEL officer for the charity. “Initially, the use of Open Office Spreadsheet didn’t allow us to use the appropriate graphical representation of our data. For example, we couldn’t draw a normal distribution graph (a graph showing both a histogram and a curve) when working on the Pupil Achievement Record (PAR) data and teacher/trainer assessment data. But with the introduction of the Microsoft Office, we’re able to get all the graphs we need in our data analysis.”
“the right package I was waiting for”
Benjamin Kwadwo Appiah is the MEL Manager, and is also pleased that the charity could make use of Microsoft donations through tt-exchange. “Microsoft Office was the right package I was waiting for. It has enabled me to do quality presentations, tabulations and designs.”
“One fantastic thing about this software is the degree of flexibility and quality of options it offers as compared to the Open Office I was using, which is more complex and with fewer options.”
“technology can directly support charities’ missions”
The charity Tech Trust has run tt-exchange (the UK’s only software donation programme) since 2006, which has helped UK charities save more than £150 million to date. It connects charities to donations from companies like Microsoft, Adobe, Symantec and others.
Richard Craig is the charity’s CEO. “We’re always delighted to hear success stories such as the one from The Sabre Charitable Trust. It goes to show what we know – that technology can directly support charities’ missions by helping them work more effectively and efficiently – which is why we operate the donation programme. We’re grateful to Microsoft for donating software to the sector, and we hope we can help even more charities in future.”
|Who are they?||The Sabre Charitable Trust (No. 1105489)|
|Where are they?||Cornwall and Ghana|
|What do they do?||Improve the lives of poor and marginalised children in Ghana through education|
|How big are they?||Less than £400k revenue|
|What did they receive?||Microsoft Office Standard 2013 (includes software assurance)|
|The outcome?||The charity is now better able to analyse the successes and failures of a key programme, allowing them to improve its future impact|
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