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Amnesty International West Africa Regional Office – Call for Consultants

21 mars 2017

Terms of Reference for Baseline Study : “Reducing rates of female genital mutilation and early and forced marriage for girls in Sierra Leone, Burkina Faso and Senegal”.

Amnesty International in West Africa and Amnesty International UK in partnership with DfID will begin a project to support the reduction of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and Early and Forced Marriage (EFM) in Sierra Leone, Burkina Faso and Senegal from February 2017.

To date various initiatives have sought to tackle these threats. Yet millions remain at risk. Figures from UNICEF suggest that 76% of women and girls in Burkina Faso have been subjected to FGM, with an even higher figure - 88% - in Sierra Leone, putting both countries in the top ten worst affected in the world. According to UNICEF, 44% of Sierra Leone women aged 20-24 were married before the age of 18, while in Burkina Faso over 52% of all women were married at a young age. In Senegal the national prevalence for women (aged 15-49) who have undergone FGM is 26% and 33% of girls are married before the age of 18. These moderately high figures mask the severity of the problem as there are sharp disparities in levels of FGM and EFM within Senegal, especially between regions and between urban and rural areas. Moreover the perseverance of the problem is also worrying in Senegal, with the country being one of the few in Sub-Saharan Africa where the proportion of girls and women who reportedly want FGM to continue has remained constant over the last 20 years.

The prevalence of human rights abuses including FGM and EFM is linked to deeply-entrenched traditional beliefs and myths, as well as wider gender inequalities combined with strong cultural barriers to women’s participation in decisions affecting them. The three Amnesty entities in Sierra Leone, Burkina Faso and Senegal work with communities to empower women and girls, supporting them in tackling discriminatory beliefs and practices that impact their lives, and engaging with community leaders to contribute to change in attitudes and behaviour.

The project titled : “Reducing rates of female genital mutilation and early and forced marriage for girls in Sierra Leone, Burkina Faso and Senegal”, is a three-year initiative (2017-2019) with the overall aim of significantly reducing and preventing FGM and EFM by addressing their root causes. The project will work in 69 target communities across the three countries, of which 54 will be communities where we have not previously worked or delivered interventions on FGM/EFM. The project will deliver the following outputs :

1. New targeted communities take action towards ending FGM and EFM by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) or making a public declaration ending both practices
2. Women and girls in target communities across Senegal, Sierra Leone and Burkina Faso have an increased critical understanding of the risks associated with FGM and EFM, their human rights and confidence in claiming them.
3. Men in target communities have greater critical understanding of, and respect for, the rights of women and girls.
4. Establishment of effective Alert Committees in all target communities in Senegal, Sierra Leone and Burkina Faso monitoring and reporting incidents of FGM and EFM.
5. Community members have increased knowledge and confidence in lobbying policy-makers on human rights issues, and are active in campaigning for legislative change.
6. An increase in the number of parliamentary discussions and actions on the national and international legal aspects of the fight against FGM and EFM.

By the end of the three years, the project is expected to provide evidence of effective actions and strategies for the sustainable containment of FGM and EFM threats. The ultimate success of the project will be measured through two expected outcomes : firstly, that communities in Sierra Leone, Burkina Faso and Senegal will participate in Human Rights Education (HRE) projects, seeking commitments to abandon female genital mutilation (FGM) and early and forced marriage (EFM), meaning around 29,970 cases of FGM/EFM will be prevented ; and secondly, that there is an increased commitment from those in Government for legislative change : full legal prohibition of FGM in Sierra Leone, stronger legal protections from EFM for women and girls in Burkina Faso, and better law enforcement and adoption of Child Code in Senegal.

2. Rationale for the Baseline study

The project aims to support targeted communities to take effective actions to eradicate and prevent FGM and EFM. Achievement of this ambitious goal calls for the development of a strong evidence base. Therefore, in order to assess the impact of the project, Amnesty International has scheduled a research-based baseline and endline evaluation. The baseline evaluation is expected to provide updated information on the current status with respect to the practices, attitudes and perspectives of the stakeholders and communities on women and girls rights. Generally, the results of the baseline study will support the development of the Monitoring, Evaluation Research and Learning (MERL) framework for the project which will be used to track progress towards achievement of project outcomes. Specifically, the results of the baseline survey will : a) provide benchmark data for selected performance indicators and guide in setting targets for monitoring implementation and results ; b) Inform Amnesty delivery partners and enable the project to achieve optimum performance and take appropriate corrective action and c) be compared with endline results to determine whether the project has impacted and transformed attitudes and behaviors in communities and therefore provide insights into whether it could be scaled up.

3. Objectives of the Baseline study

Generally, the baseline evaluation is expected to provide updated information on the current status with respect to the practices, attitudes and perspectives of the stakeholders and communities on women and girls rights when it comes to FGM and EFM. The consultant will clearly define these. Specifically, the baseline is expected to :

1. Provide a refined and up-to-date environment analysis of the project deployment, including a precise inventory of stakeholders.
2. Provide recommendations to refine the objectives of the project in the light of the current situation, recent trends and identified risks.
3. Identify and propose areas of intervention and modalities for collaboration between the Amnesty delivery partners in order to develop cross regional synergies and promote good practices.

4. Scope of consultancy services

The baseline survey shall be conducted in project sites in the three countries. It is expected that the consultant will select representative samples in/of the targeted communities. The specific tasks that will be conducted by the consultant will include :

1. Use an appropriate study design that will allow for tracking of outcomes at end of project evaluation.
2. Use an appropriate sampling frame to select representative samples of target groups (women, girls, men, customary chiefs, religious leaders, authorities, etc.)
3. Develop a questionnaire and interview/data collection methodology which can assess with reasonable accuracy (correcting where necessary for bias or censorship) current beliefs, attitudes and practices around values in targeted communities.
4. Develop appropriate tools to meet the objectives and specific questions of the baseline evaluation study.
5. In collaboration with Amnesty delivery partners, recruit and train enumerators for data collection and oversee the data collection process.
6. Carry out data entry and analysis.
7. Prepare and submit a draft baseline evaluation study report to the Project Management Committee for review alongside soft copies of all baseline evaluation datasets, outputs and tools.
8. Submit a final baseline evaluation study report in soft copy having incorporated the inputs of the Project Management Committee and partners.

5. Deliverables

The consultant (s) will prepare and submit the following deliverables within an agreed timeline :
1. An inception report with the proposed study design, samples, tools and procedure for data collection & data collection plan
2. All Instruments for data collection
3. Conduct training of the enumerators (data collectors)
4. First draft of the baseline evaluation report
5. All Datasets and tools used in the data collection
6. A final baseline evaluation study report

6. Timelines

The timeline for the baseline study is April 2017 to October 2017 with a total of 132 consultancy days. A final report is expected on or before 15th November 2017. The consultant will be required to submit the deliverables to Amnesty International within the above mentioned timelines.

7. Requirement

Interested consultants are required to submit a detailed technical proposal on how they intend to undertake this assignment. The proposal should include the following :

1. A detailed methodology including : i) interpretation of the study objectives ; ii) description of target groups, samples and sampling procedures ; iii) description of instruments ; iv) procedures for data collection ; v) procedures for data analysis
2. A detailed work plan specifying all the timelines
3. A detailed budget
4. A detailed CV of the lead consultant indicating relevant assignment
5. References of at least 2 former or current clients for whom similar work has been done, together with their contacts

It is anticipated that the contract will be awarded not later than 20th April 2017.

HOW TO APPLY :

Interested qualified individuals/firms should send their Detailed Proposal to firmin.mbala@amnesty.org. The proposals must be submitted electronically to the address above, by 4th April 2017.

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

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