International Development

Introduction

Project Balance works extensively with international development organizations, non-profit organizations, universities and government ministries to support international development initiatives in the areas of health, social welfare and agriculture. Our services include developing software to collect and report program data, monitoring and evaluation services and project/program management. Our team members have years of experience working in low resource settings. Our adaptive project management approach coupled with our highly skilled staff members produce successful results. We work closely with our clients to include all stakeholders and to understand the core needs and priorities.

Project Countries: China, Ethiopia, Guyana, Haiti, Kenya, Nigeria, India, Pacific Islands, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, United States, Zambia, Zimbabwe

Project Balance International Projects

Project NameClientSectorCountryYear
Haiti HMISDAIHealthcareHaiti2017-present
Joint Emergency Operations (JEOP)Catholic Relief ServicesAgriculture/Food distribution monitoringEthiopia2016-present
ZimPAAC Data Improvement Project (ZDIP)ITECH, University of WashingtonHealthcareZimbabwe2019-present
Digital Health Implementation Guide for the Pacific IslandsAsian Development BankHealthcarePacific Islands Region2020-present
MER MobileDigital Square/PATHHealthcareSouth Africa2019
Strengthening Epidemic Response Systems (SERS)University of Maryland, NigeriaDisease SurveillanceNigeria2015-2017
IQCareFutures Group/Palladium GroupHIV Care and TreatmentKenya, Uganda, Nigeria2010-2015
SeedsCareUniversity of Maryland, NigeriaHIV Care and TreatmentNigeria2014
Gender Based Violence Information Management System (GBVIMS)World VisionGenderZambia2016-2018
HIV Patient Level DashboardInternational Center for AIDS Care and Treatment Programs (ICAP)HIV Care and TreatmentKenya2014-2015
USAID Financing Ghanaian Agriculture Project (USAID-FinGAP)CoronaAgricultureGhana2016
AIDSRelief Transition (2011-2016) - M&E support servicesFutures Group/Palladium GroupPMTCTZambia2011-2016
AIDSRelief program (2004- 2013) - Strategic Information support servicesFutures Group/Palladium GroupHIV Care and Treatment/ PMTCTUganda, Ethiopia, Kenya, Haiti, Guyana, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, and Zambia2004-2013
AIDSRelief program (2004- 2013) - Site Capacity Assessment tool/dashboard requirements and designFutures Group/Palladium GroupHIV Care and Treatment/ PMTCTUganda, Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Zambia2004-2013
Nigeria National Data Repository project - requirements and designFutures Group/Palladium GroupHIV Care and TreatmentNigeria2013-2015
Community-based prevention information system (CoPIS), - User interface design and project managementFutures Group/Palladium GroupOVCZambia2011-2013
Pamoja Tuwalee - User interface design and project managementFutures Group/Palladium GroupOVCTanzania2012-2013
Data Rising - User interface design, business analysis and project managementFutures Group/Palladium GroupOVCZambia2014-2015
Telecom Project Management OfficeIBMTelecommunicationsChina2009

Monitoring and Evaluation

Monitoring and evaluation requires identifying data to measure, indicators, process and data documentation as well as analysis of data that reflects the status and results at various stages of a program. These data can and should be used for program decision making and adaptive management of a program. Project Balance works closely with subject matter experts to determine what should be measured and we help our clients look outside the boundaries of the problem at hand to anticipate emerging trends. We feel that it’s extremely important to involve key stakeholders in the process of determining and defining indicators; what and how indicators will be collected – so that they can express what results will have the most value and impact from their perspective.

Performance Monitoring Plans

Project Balance uses a performance monitoring plan (PMP) to outline key performance indicators, timelines, data source, and targets to monitor and evaluate a program. Through an iterative process, we work with key stakeholders to improve the PMP in order to adequately measure results for the program and make program improvements mid-stream. Within the PMP, we identify the general approach ensuring participation from both internal and external stakeholders. Through the PMP, we identify outputs, outcomes, and impact indicators to monitor and evaluate for the life of the project.

Data Demand and Use

While it’s important to identify key indicators, data sources and collection methods in a performance monitoring plan, it is equally important to document how the information will be used for decision making and to make adjustments to project implementation for improved results. As part of Project Balance’s methodology, we include an information dissemination plan that provides useful data to internal and external partners. To facilitate an enabling environment it is essential that decision makers demand data and are able to use it effectively to inform decisions. Project Balance’s approach is to identify key information for each stakeholder and provide information in a digestible format. Our emphasis is on displaying information that is specific to each stakeholder and finding ways to integrate this in their general work process. Through a participatory approach we are able to understand stakeholders work process and find ways of incorporating information into these processes. We take great pride in our ability to design systems that collect quality data and manage data with the intent to improve evidence driven decisions.

Reporting

Project Balance works closely with our clients to understand the underlying data and provide support for determining key performance metrics as well as government driven metrics. We start by documenting the performance indicator definition, including the data sources, metric calculations and display visualization. These definitions are the basis for report and dashboard development. Because decisions will be made using the report results, data quality is extremely important. We check that the underlying data is correct through additional data queries; as well we verify that the report calculations are correct using dummy data sets with known data elements.

PEPFAR Logo
In the international context, Project Balance provides support for the PEPFAR MER indicators and DATIM reporting requirements. We understand how to calculate the underlying indicators and work with you to determine where and how the data will be collected. We will then format the data as required by country ministries and PEPFAR.

DHIS2

DHIS2 LogoProject Balance has worked extensively on projects that have DHIS2 as their central data reporting repository or as part of a larger data warehouse initiative. In addition to setting up the infrastructure and establishing new instances of DHIS2, along with setting up forms, reports and dashboards, our team has real expertise in helping clients resolve upgrade issues, identifying and resolving data quality issues and enhancing existing instances of DHIS2. DHIS2 can be difficult to maintain and over time, as data elements and indicators change, adjusting the system to reflect current needs with the ability to see historical data requires detailed knowledge of the application idiosyncrasies and database structure. Project Balance uses a detailed testing process to identify system and data issues; then we know how to make updates so that data is not lost. We apply data warehousing best practices to any DHIS2 project we oversee, producing excellent results.

DHIS2Xfer Tool

DHIS2Xfer, developed by Project Balance, was originally designed to address the specific requirement of transferring DHIS2 Program Indicators from a Tracker DHIS2 instance to an aggregate DHIS2 instance. This is a user-friendly application that automates the integration of data from two different DHIS2 implementations by allowing data staff to generate an extract, transform and load (ETL) profile to be run on demand or automated by schedule. The system allows transfer of data associated with data elements, indicators or program indicators from on instance of DHIS2 to data elements in a second instance of DHIS2.

DHIS2 Xfer Tool

The tool consists of two components:

  • A web application with UI that can be run from a server or administrator’s workstation to map objects between two DHIS2 instances (organization units, data elements, indicators and program indicators) and create transfer jobs that can be either run manually on demand or on a schedule using a console application on a server.
  • A console application that can be installed on a server to automate the processing of mapping jobs created using the web application. The application is easy to use and greatly simplifies the process of identifying and mapping data source objects to data destination objects in two different DHIS2 instances.

This tool is freely available on Github. Please click here to provide your email so that we can provide documentation and assistance with this tool.

CommCare

CommCare LogoOne of Project Balance’s areas of expertise is the deployment and management of CommCare coupled with a relational database for reporting. We have hands-on experience deploying stand-alone CommCare instances as well as developing CommCare form-based applications (survey and case management). We have developed a lightweight middleware application that extracts data from the CommCare data repository, transforms it, identifies data discrepancies and loads the data into a relational database for further analysis in a flexible environment.


Case Studies

ITECH Case Study

ITECH CommCare InterfaceProject Balance developed an integrated patient and aggregated data capture and reporting system with CommCare (data capture on tablets), MS SQL (data warehouse) and Power BI (reporting and analytics)…

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MER Mobile App Case Study

MERL Tech LogoProject Balance built a mobile application that holds all of the South African specific PEPFAR MER guidelines as well as reference maps displaying information about PEFPFAR provincial and district support by agency and implementing partner…

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World Vision – STOP GBV Case Study

Zambia National GBVIMS InterfaceProject Balance built a case-based Gender Based Violence Information Management System (GBVIMS) that collected data in 8 forms with a specific workflow…

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