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End Violence Against Sex Workers in Myanmar







Asia Pacific Network of Service Workers (APNSW), a regional network of sex workers established in 1997, is a common platform for member organizations in Asia and the Pacific. It has registered as a Foundation in Thailand with a regional Secretariat based in Bangkok. The Secretariat is chiefly responsible for planning, implementing, coordinating, networking and communicating with the member organizations.  It represents over 34 members from 23 countries across the Asia-Pacific Region. The purpose of APNSW is to protect and advocate for the Human Rights of Sex Workers by upholding their voices, empowerment and meaningful participation at the national, regional and international platforms. APNSW is playing a pivotal role to ensure human rights and improve the quality of lives of sex workers by means of evidence-based advocacy, networking, capacity building, research and policy development and reforms. APNSW is a primary recipient of a regional The United Nations Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women which is implemented by Aye Myanmar Association (AMA) in Myanmar.



Project Title

End Violence Against Sex Workers in Myanmar


3 years

Starting date

1st April 2017

End date

31st March 2020




The project aims to increase sex worker knowledge of their rights, empower sex workers to take collective action to prevent and respond to violence against the community, and advocate for structural change to reduce vulnerability of sex workers. Violence against female and transgender sex workers (VASW) is pervasive in Myanmar. Evidence suggests that police are both primary perpetrators of VASW as well as key gatekeepers to sex worker human rights, enabling societal impunity toward sex worker populations. This project aims to improve the safety, access to justice, and reduce exposure to discrimination and stigma among female and transgender sex workers in four cities across Myanmar, by February 2020.


Primary beneficiaries are female and transgenders sex workers who experiences and or high risk to face violence in Yangon, Mandalay, Bago and Myintkyina cities, who benefit from high quality, culturally competent and community-based services to prevent violence or to get support by those who experience with violence


A further key beneficiary and implementing partner is the Aye Myanmar Association (AMA) Myanmar, who are supported to become the lead implementing organization working on violence issues by the end of the project.


Secondary Beneficiaries include other service providers involved in violence response through the comprehensive End Violence Against Sex Workers Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), who benefit from improved knowledge, skills and attitudes around violence. They include:


  • Police department
  • National AIDS Program (NAP)
  • Staff of Sex Workers Community Based Organization/Groups/Networks
  • Gate keepers of sex industry
  • Staff of National and International organizations
  • Women organizations
  • Lawyers
  • Journalists


See Annex 1 Progress and Annual Narrative Report covering the period from 1st April 2017 to 28th February 2020 for the most recent information on program achievements.


1.2 Strategy and Results Chain


Three evidence-based strategies drive the implementation of the project:

● Sex-worker led, community empowerment approaches

● Multi-sectorial coordination

● Institutionalization of partnership with police and law enforcement


Sex-worker led, community-based empowerment strategies have proven successful and cost-effective in reducing the prevalence of violence among sex workers. Sex worker-led structural interventions, such as the Ashodaya project in Mysore, India, have proven effective in reducing factors that enhance sex worker’s vulnerability to abuse. Key factors to successful reduction in violence included: greater collective agency among SWs; enhanced self-esteem and self-efficacy contributing to greater use of crisis response mechanisms; and relationship-building with stakeholders to reduce stigma, discrimination and violence. This approach is practicing by Bangladesh, Indonesia and Nepal also with another violence respond project and its also under experiment that how community lead approach works in Asia.

See Annex 2, RRF for detailed Outcome and Output indicators to be evaluated in the Final External Evaluation.



1.3 Geographic Context


The geographical scope of the project is Yangon, Mandalay, Bago and Myintkyina cities of Myanmar. In Myanmar there are currently 66,000 of female sex workers. The transgenders sex workers are unknown. In Yangon sex work often occurs in hotels that also operate as brothels. The recent appearance of massage parlors began in 1995, with ethnic minority groups such as the Wa running such businesses in particular. Nightclubs in Yangon are also frequented by sex workers who work independently  Throughout the country, the sex industry generally operates out of restaurants, brothels posing as guesthouses, and nightclubs. Since Cyclone Nargis hit in May 2008, the number of sex workers in Yangon has increased significantly, thus lowering prices for sexual services.

Mandalay has many sex workers working in massage parlors, KTV lounges stage shows and on the street.

Female sex workers face disproportionate levels of violence in Myanmar; gender inequality, structural stigma and discrimination against sex work enables police, clients, inmate partners and the larger society to perpetrate violence against sex workers with impunity. Within this environment, sex workers are less able to access health or legal support services in response to incidents of violence, or obtain HIV-related care and treatment.

A 2017 baseline survey conducted by APNSW and AMA found that 54.6% FSWs respondents mentioned that they experience violence from clients in the past one year when 49.6% from police. On the other hand, 34.5% TG sex workers from clients but 44.7% from police. As TG get clients from street so they face more violence from police on the street. However, both gender of sex workers faces huge violence from intimate partners.


1.4 Total budget:


Total amount requested from the UN Trust Fund 399,796 USD. Total contribution from applicants 65,750 USD. Total Project budget 465,546 USD


1.5 Key partners


The key partners involved in the project, including the implementing partners and other key stakeholders. The key partnership in this project is APNSW lead organization and Aye Myanmar Association (AMA) Myanmar, AMA is sex workers community-based organization in Myanmar. AMA is working towards a Myanmar where sex workers do not face stigma, discrimination or oppression, and can live their lives independently with social acceptance and respect. AMA is working with other civil society organisations and the Government to achieve law reforms to change the punitative laws, so that sex workers are not vulnerable to police harrassments and arrests. The organization has had success in community empowerment, leadership building, ending violance aginst sex workers, and has worked on several research projects including on violence against sex workers. AMA is also working to promote and protect the human rights of sex workers and providing technical assistance to sex worker led organizations in Myanmar to build their capacity.

The project also partnering with civil society, government and UN agencies in Myanmar, and regionally. The project build upon and strengthen existing partnerships with government agencies, such as the National AIDS Program and the Police and Ministry of Home Affairs. These partners provides strategic support and coordination to enhance law enforcement response and mitigation of VASW. The project partner with national civil society organisations. Akhaya and GEN are two women’s rights organisations based in Yangon, and provide technical assistance on VAW/G. The organisations contribute to the development of curriculum modules on VAW/G and the impact of VAW/G on women’s health and well-being. Equality of Myanmar, Legal Clinic Myanmar and Yangon Justice Centre other partners in the set-up and implementation of crisis centres and hotlines, providing legal counselling and referrals. They contributes to the development of legal literacy components of the sex worker capacity building curriculum, to enhance sex worker understanding of their rights, and how to document abuse.


Other key NGO partners, such as PSI serve as referral organisations through the crisis centres to provide VAW/G and healthcare services to sex workers in need of medical attention. The project complements existing VAW/G and HIV healthcare response, rather than recreate or duplicate services. The project partner with national sex worker organisations, such as SWIM and TOP. These organisations focus on legal advocacy and sexual and reproductive health services. The UNTF project complement this work, by targeting the social norms that stigmatize sex work and promote greater awareness of sex worker human rights among key law enforcement, legislative and healthcare stakeholders.


Regionally, Ashodaya serve as technical partners on the development and implementation of community-based, sex-worker led crisis support services and interventions to reduce VASWs. Other sex worker organizations affiliated with APNSW also engage in South-South learning activities with AMA, to promote regional learning of best practices, and mobilization of sex worker communities. Best practices shared at the regional level contribute to a two-way learning process, by which Myanmar sex workers and national stakeholders share project lessons with regional partners, and other organizations from the region can share their learning to inform the collective work of the Myanmar sex worker community





2.1 Why the evaluation needs to be done


This is a mandatory final project evaluation required by the UN Trust Fund to End Violence against sex workers in Myanmar.  The other reasons to evaluation this project are;


  • To assess the APNSW’s end violence against sex workers program implementation to ensure the project objectives, indicators, outputs and expected outcomes are met. that AMA has the capacity to deliver the comprehensive violence responses project for sex workers


  • To provide recommendations for further projects implementation to sex workers in Myanmar as well as in Asia and Pacific;


  • To provide recommendations based on the findings of the evaluation, achievements, lessons learned, gaps and challenges to guide End Violence against sex workers project in Myanmar as well as in Asia and Pacific to protect the human rights of sex workers


2.2 How the evaluation results will be used, by whom and when;


Evaluation findings will be shared with CBOs/NGOs/INGOs/UN/Government as well as other stakeholders to obtain their feedback and discuss lessons learned. Findings will also be used to identify any remaining needs and to inform strategies for future program in Myanmar as well as Asia and Pacific.

Furthermore, APNSW is working in 22 countries with 40 members. Recently, APNSW received a grant to implement end violence against sex workers project in Bangladesh, Myanmar, Indonesia and Nepal from Women Fund Asia. The project strategy, implementation strategies, objectives are same. This project will continue until 2021. So, the evaluation results will be used beyond the UNTF project from 2020 onward

2.3 What decisions will be taken after the evaluation is completed


After the evaluation is completed, APNSW will utilize the results and recommendations to improve, strengthen, and provide guidance for future adjustment, design and implementation of end violence against sex workers program in Myanmar as well as in Asia and Pacific.




3.1 Scope of Evaluation:


This evaluation will encompass the entire project duration from 1st April 2017 to 31st March 2020. The evaluation activities will take place over a timeframe jointly agreed by the evaluation consultant and APNSW upon the approval of this term of reference and the recruitment of the external evaluation consultant. The geographic coverage will encompass the 4 cities of Myanmar such as Yangon, Mandalay, Bago and Myintkyina. The evaluation will cover primary beneficiaries of female and transgender sex workers in Yangon, Mandalay, Bago and Myintkyina cities of Myanmar and secondary beneficiaries of service providers involved in violence against sex workers including police, NAP, NGOs, CBOs as detailed in Section 1 above.


3.2 Objectives of Evaluation:


The overall objectives of the evaluation are to:

  • To evaluate the entire project in terms of effectiveness, relevance, efficiency, sustainability and impact, with a strong focus on assessing the results at the outcome and project goals;
  • To generate key lessons and identify promising practices for learning;
  • To generate knowledge that can be adapted to new program focus, and inform adjustments to the program to continue to respond to violence against sex workers 





The key questions that need to be answered by this evaluation include the following divided into five categories of analysis. The five overall evaluation criteria – relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, sustainability and impact - will be applied for this evaluation.



Evaluation Criteria

Mandatory Evaluation Questions



1) To what extent were the intended project goal, outcomes and outputs achieved and how?

2) To what extent did the project reach the targeted beneficiaries at the project goal and outcome levels? How many beneficiaries have been reached?

3) To what extent has this project generated positive changes in the lives of targeted (and untargeted) sex workers in relation to the specific forms of violence addressed by this project? Why? What are the key changes in the lives of those sex workers? Please describe those changes.

4) What internal and external factors contributed to the achievement and/or failure of the intended project goal, outcomes and outputs? How?




1) To what extent was the project strategy and activities implemented relevant in responding to the needs of sex workers?

2) To what extent do achieved results (project goal, outcomes and outputs) continue to be relevant to the needs of sex workers?




1) How efficiently and timely has this project been implemented and managed in accordance with the Project Document?



1) How are the achieved results, especially the positive changes generated by the project in the lives of sex workers at the project goal level, going to be sustained after this project ends?

2) Does AMA have adequate resources to provide high quality EVASW services to sex workers after the project ends?

3) How will stakeholders sustain ownership of the well being of sex workers after the project ends?



1) What are the unintended consequences (positive and negative) resulted from the project?

2) Have survivors of violence experienced any positive or unintended negative consequences since receiving services?

3) Has there been any change in attitude toward VASW issues and stigmatization among stakeholders?


Knowledge Generation

1) What are the key lessons learned that can be shared with other practitioners on Ending Violence against sex workers?

2) Are there any promising practices? If yes, what are they and how can these promising practices be replicated in other projects and/or in other countries that have similar interventions?







This evaluation will focus on process and outcomes and will be conducted by an external consultant specializing in End Violence Against Sex Workers. The evaluation will use a combination of quantitative and qualitative methods, including case audits, surveys and semi-structured interviews with clients, AMA staff and stakeholders. The following methods and respondents are proposed in this term of reference. However, details may change upon more detailed design discussions with the evaluation consultant:


1. Desk review of program monitoring documents and progress reports

2. Semi-structured interviews with 15 sex workers

3. Semi-structured interviews with APNSW and AMA management and staff (approximately 10 respondents)

4. Semi-structured interviews with key partners service providers (will decided later) (approximately 10) respondents)

5. Focus group discussions with key stakeholders (will decided by AMA/APNSW and consultant) (approximately 15)

6. Semi-structured interview with gatekeepers of sex industry (e.g. manger, pimps, madam (approximately 10 respondents)

7. Interviews with UN, NAP and INGO (approximately 10 respondents)

8. Review of quantitative data from M&E activities conducted throughout the project


Please note that these are only suggested numbers, and the final sample is to be co-determined with the evaluator once they are on board.


The evaluation consultant will conduct two field visits to the two cities namely Yangon and Mandalay to conduct the semi-structured interviews and administer the short quantitative surveys with support from AMA local office. The participants in these semi-structured interviews and surveys will be selected using an appropriate means and criteria agreed between the evaluation consultant and APNSW. Meanwhile, the cases that will undergo the evaluation audit will be chosen at random based on the project information management system (IMS) data collected during the UNTF project period


The data gathered from these evaluation methods will be analyzed by the evaluation consultant and compiled into an evaluation report to be submitted to APNSW Coordinator and the Manager of Programs for review by April 2020 prior to submission to UNTF in May 2020.

Again, these are only suggestions, and the final research design is to be co-determined with the evaluator once they are on board.



The evaluation must be conducted in accordance with the principles outlined in the UN Evaluation Group (UNEG) ‘Ethical Guidelines for Evaluation’ 


It is imperative for the evaluator(s) to:

  • Guarantee the safety of respondents and the research team.
  • Apply protocols to ensure anonymity and confidentiality of respondents.
  • Select and train the research team on ethical issues.
  • Provide referrals to local services and sources of support for women that might ask for them.
  • Ensure compliance with legal codes governing areas and applicable IRC policies such as provisions to collect and report data, particularly permissions needed to interview or obtain information about children and youth.
  • Store securely the collected information.


The evaluator(s) must consult with the relevant documents as relevant prior to development and finalization of data collection methods and instruments. The key documents include (but not limited to) the following:


  • Jewkes, R., E. Dartnall and Y. Sikweyiya (2012). Ethical and Safety Recommendations for Research on the Perpetration of Sexual Violence. Sexual Violence Research Initiative. Pretoria, South Africa, Medical Research Council. Available from 
  • Researching violence against women: A practical guide for researchers and activists November 2005



The evaluation must be conducted in accordance with the principles outlined in the UN Evaluation Group (UNEG) ‘Ethical Guidelines for Evaluation’ 







Description of Expected Deliverables

Timeline of each deliverables


Evaluation inception report

(language of report: English)

The inception report provides the grantee organization and the evaluators with an opportunity to verify that they share the same understanding about the evaluation and clarify any misunderstanding at the outset.

An inception report must be prepared by the evaluators before going into the technical mission and full data collection stage. It must detail the evaluators’ understanding of what is being evaluated and why, showing how each evaluation question will be answered by way of: proposed methods, proposed sources of data and data collection/analysis procedures.

The inception report must include a proposed schedule of tasks, activities and deliverables, designating a team member with the lead responsibility for each task or product.

The structure must be in line with the suggested structure of the annex of TOR.



Draft evaluation report

(language of report: English)

Evaluators must submit draft report for review and comments by all parties involved. The report needs to meet the minimum requirements specified in the annex of TOR.

The grantee and key stakeholders in the evaluation must review the draft evaluation report to ensure that the evaluation meets the required quality criteria.



Final evaluation report

(language of report: English)

Relevant comments from key stakeholders must be well integrated in the final version, and the final report must meet the minimum requirements specified in the annex of TOR.

The final report must be disseminated widely to the relevant stakeholders and the general public.





8.1 Evaluation Team Composition and Roles and Responsibilities


The Evaluation Team will be consisting of one international consultant and one national interpreter. Evaluator A (e.g. senior evaluator) will be responsible for undertaking the evaluation from start to finish and for managing the evaluation team under the supervision of evaluation task manager from the grantee organization, for the data collection and analysis, as well as report drafting and finalization in English. The national interpreter will be responsible for assisting the evaluator in the design and implementation of all interviews and focus groups discussions with community level stakeholders. The national staff interpreter will assist the evaluator in ensuring the data collection tools are linguistically and culturally appropriate, and provide high quality interpretation and translation assistance to ensure the evaluator collects accurate and comprehensive information from all stakeholders engaging in the evaluation.


8.2 Required Competencies


Evaluator <

Contact :

ผู้ประสานงาน / Coordinatorนักวิจัย / Researcher


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