News Bridging the Gap

Bridging the Gap monitoring, evaluation and learning: brief for external support

Sustain are seeking a consultant to develop a monitoring, evaluation and learning approach for National Lottery funded programme, Bridging the Gap.

Words Food Learning Forum members used to describe the role of shared learning. Credit: Sustain

Words Food Learning Forum members used to describe the role of shared learning. Credit: Sustain

What is Bridging the Gap? 

Food that is good for people and the planet, benefits communities and supports decent livelihoods is currently more expensive than food that is bad for health and produced in ways that damage the planet.  

We want to change that by bridging the gap between communities experiencing low incomes and health inequalities, with affordable and planet-friendly food that enables everyone to enjoy a universally healthy, just and sustainable food system. 

We want to do that by developing and trialling supply chain interventions, using principles of coproduction to achieve this. 

What are we trying to achieve with monitoring, evaluation and learning? 

The programme has a spirit of enquiry and is looking to create and test innovative solutions to complex problems, but also to learn from what else is happening across the UK and internationally. We have begun this process by producing a report called ‘Mapping the Landscape’, which provides a brief overview of research and case studies already completed or underway.  

We want to involve people in the design, and potentially the delivery, and decision making behind the solutions we test and will do this through co-production of the programme framework with experts from across the food system, as well as local level co-design of pilots within the communities they will serve. 

While we want people to design the parameters for success, we also want to ensure that we have a broad framework for capturing learning and building a body of evidence from the start, on all of our outputs including 

  • Learning from our wide-ranging research and engagement with different partners and people.
  • Learning from our co-designed pilots: this is probably the key area that will provide a body of evidence with which to advocate for financial and other incentives to enable access to climate and nature friendly food for people on low incomes. 
  • Learning and impact of our movement building activities e.g. workshops, webinars and different ways of engaging with the programme that we provide.

What support do we need from a consultant? 

We would like a consultant to work with the Bridging the Gap Programme Manager to develop an approach to monitoring and evaluation that appreciates the emerging nature of the programme and its pilots and is therefore inherently adaptive.  

  • Participate in the programme co-production process to develop an understanding of the programme genesis and what the programme aims to achieve (note this is 3 x 4hours online). 
  • Create a process/ framework/plan to reflect on and evaluate the success of our co-production and co-design processes.
  • Develop a monitoring, evaluation and learning (MEL) framework for the programme as a whole and for pilot interventions which reflects the outcomes of the co-production process. This should initially be presented as a draft for comment, with feedback incorporated into a final framework.  
  • Co-design bespoke MEL plans for each of the first four pilots with the teams running them. 
  • Advise partners on data collection.

Budget and timelines 

We have a budget of £6000 available for this and would like the work to start as soon as possible in April 2023. We anticipate this will involve a minimum of 10 days of work over a 4 – 6 month period, with opportunities for follow on after that point. 

Skills and experience 

  • Experience developing monitoring, evaluation and learning plans and strategies 
  • Experience producing evaluation frameworks at a relevant scale, with client and wider partner input 
  • Ability to conduct quantitative and qualitative data analysis 
  • Ability to clearly and concisely communicate results 
  • Understanding of the food system in the UK and a commitment to the vision of the programme  
  • Experience using data for advocacy 

How to apply 

Please provide a CV or equivalent stating your experience together with a cover letter stating your interest in this work by Monday 27 March to

Please state your availability for an interview between 29 March and 5 April and what you are able to deliver within the stated budget.

Published 13 Mar 2023

Bridging the Gap: Bridging the Gap to climate and nature friendly food for all.

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