You are here

Passionate about Parenting Evaluation - Consultancy Opportunity

Mothers’ Union is looking for an experienced evaluator to lead our Passionate about Parenting Programme Evaluation. This flagship programme of the Mothers’ Union has run for 19 years in equipping and accrediting over 350 volunteers to facilitate parenting groups throughout the UK and Ireland. The evaluation will provide the basis for the MU to develop and strengthen its work with families in the future.

We are looking for a consultant with strong experience of evaluation and of working through faith based and volunteer movements. Experience in participatory methodologies, soft systems methodology, facilitation skills, critical thinking and analysis skills are essential. The consultancy will take place over a three month period and it will start as soon as possible. It will involve some travel within the UK and Ireland.

Please submit a CV and a one page outline of how you would approach the evaluation to by 15 November 2019.

Passionate about Parenting Evaluator - Consultant Opportunity

About Mothers’ Union

Mothers’ Union is a global, women-led volunteer movement of 4 million members. United in our diversity and living out our faith, we support individuals and families to transform their lives. Mothers’ Union is embedded in local communities, has unprecedented reach and gives a voice to the stigmatised and vulnerable in 84 countries worldwide.

Mothers’ Union was founded by the social activist Mary Sumner in the 19th century. She championed change, particularly in matters relating to women and family life and this continues to be part of our DNA. Our Christian values further underpin this commitment to working towards a world that ensures everyone is able to live life in all its fullness and our inclusive approach ensures we work with people of all faiths and none.

Mothers’ Union values are those of being non-judgemental, loving and compassionate, persevering and bold. Our approach to working in all our communities is first to listen and observe, then to mobilise our own and surrounding resources for action. We work to equip those around us to meet the challenges they face.

The Team

The Development team is responsible for all of the project and programme work of Mothers’ Union. It supports Mothers’ Union provinces and dioceses within Britain & Ireland and across the world in their project and programme work.

Within Britain and Ireland, three Regional Development Programme Managers are responsible for managing the various programmes: Away from it all (AFIA)- a programme that provides short breaks for families, Modern Day slavery, Prisons work, Parenting and Metamorphosis (a church and community mobilisation process). The Passionate about Parenting Training Manager is responsible for delivering training in collaboration with two volunteer trainers and assessing all coursework.


Parenting is one of Mothers’ Union’s flagship programmes. Over the past 19 years in Britain and Ireland, Passionate about Parenting (PAP) has equipped over 250 accredited facilitors and over 100 people to support these facilitators in running parenting groups.

PAP is run over five days or a weekend with a follow up day, and it provides participants with practical experience and theory on how to facilitate groups with particular focus on parenting groups. Accreditation is with the Open College Network and facilitators receive a level 3 certificate after completing a learning journal and a portfolio of evidence.

The MU does not produce its own materials for parenting groups, but it equips facilitators to identify existing materials which they think would best suit the group of parents and carers they will be working with. Parenting facilitators work with a wide range of parents and carers aiming to support families in all their forms. Groups are run in churches, community centres, schools, women’s refuges and prisons.

The evaluation is an exciting opportunity to mould how Mothers’ Union supports families in all their forms in the future. It will assess the impact, efficiency, effectiveness, sustainability and relevance of the Passionate about Parenting Programme in Britain and Ireland, and most importantly it will make recommendations for the future. The evaluation will assess how the context within which the parenting programme sits has evolved, and what gaps there are which the MU could address in the future. The evaluation will also seek to draw upon lessons learnt from MU’s Worldwide Parenting Programme.


The evaluation and the evaluator will be managed by the Regional Development Manager and an advisory group of MU members with expertise in this field. It will take place over a 3 month period and the evaluator will lead the evaluation process and will be responsible for writing up a report. The evaluation will draw on participatory methodologies and it will involve and equip key stakeholders to be part of the reflecting and learning process and it will aim to equip them in helping to design a way forward. The evaluation will draw on the following tools:

  • Desk Based Research – to assess the historical context of the PAP programme, effectiveness and efficiency of training in producing accredited facilitators that are equipped to facilitate parenting groups and the changing context for families within Britain and Ireland including current provision and any gaps. This should include a cost benefit analysis of the programme.
  • Stakeholder analysis
  • Semi Structured Interviews (SSI) and Focus Group Discussions (FGD) with stakeholders using soft systems or another participatory methodology.

Specific locations for data collection will be agreed in discussion with the Regional Development Manager, the PAP Training Manager and the Advisory Group. All five provinces within Britain and Ireland will be included in the evaluation.

Skills and Competencies of the Evaluator 

The lead evaluator will have strong experience in evaluations and experience of working in the development sector both within the British and Irish contexts and worldwide.

Active listening, critical thinking and analysis skills are essential and knowledge and experience of applying Soft Systems Methodology to complex issues is highly desirable.

Experience in participatory methodologies, ability to manipulate quantitative and qualitative data is essential, as is an understanding of working through faith based and volunteer movements.

Experience of the SHG methodology in the worldwide context and an understanding of open ended mobilisation approaches (e.g. church and community mobilisation or active listening) versus the sectoral programmatic approach.

Type of role

Consultancy. The consultant will be managed by the Regional Development Manager and an Advisory Group of six people.

Daily rate

Competitive. Commensurate with the skills and experience required in the role.


The evaluation will be conducted over a period of three months.

Start date

An immediate start is preferable, and a programme of work will be agreed with the successful candidate.

To register an interest

Please supply your CV and a one page supporting stagement highlighting what you would bring to the role by 15th November to


Closing date

15 Nov 2019


To be negotiated

Role type

Part time


UK and Ireland