JOB ANNOUNCEMENT: International Consultant (Quality review of the project of policy document “National Program on child protection 2022-2026)

APSCF – NGO Alliance active in the field of child and family social protection

TERMS OF REFERENCE

 Quality review of the project of policy document “National Program on child protection 2022-2026”

Type: individual consultancy (international)

Duration: November 2021 (7 working days)

Location: home based

  1. BACKGROUND
    • The Republic of Moldova has registered important progress in developing the child protection system. Nevertheless, aligning the legal framework and the existing practices to the UN Convention on the Child Rights protection is still a challenge.
    • The intermediary Evaluation of the Child Protection Strategy 2014-2020 and of the Action Plan for 2016-2020 in the Republic of Moldova has identified some major areas of intervention for which, the progress is still weak: consolidation of the institutional capacities at local level to prevent the child separation from his/her family; extending the professional network of foster care givers as family type alternative to institutionalization; coordinating the deinstitutionalization process by the Government; intensifying the parental education activities all over the country; developing specialized services at local level (including services for aggressors); enhancing the participation to the pre-school education, especially in the rural areas and for rroma children as well as the consolidation of the monitoring and evaluation capacities at both central and district level. These and other challenges need to be addressed by the National Child Protection Program 2022-2026 (hereinafter National Program).
    • The draft of the National Program is a public policy document in the filed of the child rights protection, which derives from the National Development Strategy ”Moldova 2030” and, respectively, contributes to its implementations. The new policy document will have under its focus at least 21,6% of the total population with habitual residence in the Republic of Moldova – children under 18 years old.
    • The elaboration of the National Program took into consideration, first of all, the results of the intermediary evaluation of the implementation of the Strategy for the Child Rights Protections for 2014-2020 and the Action Plan for 2016-2020 in the Republic of Moldova. Taking into consideration the main findings and recommendations of the named evaluation, during the elaboration of the National Program, a special attention has been given to the systemic approach as to guarantee relevance to the policy document, including: the development of the monitoring and reporting mechanism as well as of the coordination structure; the development of the theory of change; the participatory identification and the selection of the priority areas of strategic intervention; estimating the necessary resources for the National Program implementation. At the same time, there have been considered the Recommendations of the UN Child Rights Committee (2017) as well as many other referral recommendations produced within different researches and evaluations performed during 2017-2021, especially by the Ombudsperson for the Child Rights, UNICEF Moldova, Council of Europe. A special attention has been given to the children’s concerns about the evolution of the problems that are affecting their healthy and harmonious life.
    • The new National Program is anchored in the Sustainable Development Goals and is considering a range of national indicators, including: SDG 1 – No Poverty (1.1. and 1.3); SDG 3 – Good Health and Well-Being (3.4.2); SDG 5 – Gender Equality (5.2); SDG 10 – Reduce inequality (10.2); SDG 11 – Sustainable cities and communities (11.1); SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and strong Institutions (16.1; 16.2).
    • The National Program has been elaborated in a participatory way, following the methodology approved by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Social Protection. The whole process has been facilitated by the NGO Alliance active in the field of Child and Family Social Protection (APSCF), with the support of UNICEF Moldova. The identification and selection of the priority areas of strategic intervention in the field of child protection has been realized within a wider consultation framework, which included: the analyses of an informative massive composed of at least 100 documents (Reports, analyses, evaluations, policy documents etc.); four thematic meetings with the participation of 15 representatives of 12 civil society organizations and international projects in the field of the deinstitutionalization and alternative care, monitoring and evaluation, preventing and combating violence, children and youth health; six focus groups with the participation of 9 managers of social services for the children temporary placement, 13 specialists in the field of child rights protection, 12 mayors and communitarian social assistants, 12 specialists in the field of health, education, public order, psychologists, 13 representants of the civil society organizations in the field of child rights protection, 10 mothers from the rural area; eight in-depth interviews with the representatives of the Secretariat of the National Council for the Child Rights Protection  (CNPDC), Ombudsperson for the Child Rights, Ministry of Health, Labor and Social Protection, Ministry of Justice, Municipal Directorate for the Child Rights Protection of the Chisinau, the Commission for the protection of children in difficult situations, independent experts, representatives of the rroma community; online survey (based on a questionnaire that have been elaborated by a working group composed of 16 girls and boys aged between 12 and 15 years old from 9 localities of the country) with the participation of 8392 children.
    • The strategic areas, the general and specific objectives as well as the main actions have been defined and validated during four meetings of the Technical Group established by the MHLSP, composed of representatives of all the ministries and agencies with attributions in the field of child rights protection, as well as civil society organizations.
    • The final document has been consulted within tee regional consultation sessions, with the participation of 90 representatives of local public authorities, social society as well as with children.
  1. PURPOSE OF THE CONSULTANCY

The purpose of this consultancy is the quality insurance of the draft of newly child protection policy elaborated with the support of APSCF and UNICEF.

For the purpose of these document under the syntagm “the draft of newly child protection policy” or “draft of policy” is understood the Draft of the National Program on Child Protection 2022-2026.

  1. OBJECTIVES OF THE CONSULTANCY

The objective of the consultancy is to conduct a comprehensive peer review evaluation of the draft of National Program on Child Protection 2022-2026.

  1. DETAILS OF HOW THE WORK SHOULD BE DELIVERED

The consultancy is expected to be carried out within a 2 weeks period, starting with November 1st, 2021 and ending in November 15th, 2021.

To achieve the above-mentioned objectives, the selected Consultant (hereinafter the Consultant) under the guidance of APSCF will:

  • Develop a peer review methodology;
  • Conduct the peer review, including but not limited to desk review of the draft Proposal of policy document, discussions with the group of experts involved in facilitation of the process of drafting the policy document as well with line Ministries (i.e. MLSP, MoE, MoI etc.) and UNICEF Moldova;
  • Draft a clear, accessible and usable report on the findings of the peer review and recommendations for way forward;
  • Present and validate the respective report in a multi-stakeholder technical meeting of the public bodies and civil society in view of gathering participants’ feedback and advocating for the implementation of the peer review recommendations.

The scope and focus of the peer review should take into consideration the following indicative questions:

  • To what extent the proposed document responds to real needs of vulnerable children?
  • To what extent the proposed methodology for implementation, monitoring, evaluation and coordination is adequate to implement the proposed policy?

Stakeholders’ involvement

During the peer review, a series of stakeholders should be consulted, including but not limited to the line Ministries (i.e. MLSP, MH, MoE etc.), APSCF and UNICEF Moldova Country Office.

The final report will not exceed 7 pages (A4, TNR 14, spacing 1) including Annexes.

  1. DELIVERABLES AND TIME FRAME

Major tasks to be accomplished and indicative workload:

Nr.

Activity

Deliverables

Tentative deadlines*

1.       

Develop peer review methodology

Detailed Methodology

0,5 day

2.       

Desk review of the draft policy document

Questions and comments from APSCF, UNICEF and MLSP addressed in a timely manner

1,5 days

3.       

Meetings with main stakeholders and interim validation of the findings

2 days

4.       

Development of the draft peer review report with key findings, recommendations and lessons learned

Draft peer review report in English submitted to APSCF, UNICEF and MLSP

1 day

5.       

De-briefing meeting with MLSP, UNICEF, APSCF and other partners

Meeting notes

1 day

6.       

Develop the final version of the peer review report

Revised peer review report in English submitted to APSCF and UNICEF

1 day

 

TOTAL:

 

7 days, not later than November 15th, 2021

            *Exact deadlines will be mutually agreed upon contract signature.

  1. REPORTING REQUIRMENTS

The peer review should be carried out under the supervision of the APSCF General Secretary in close and regular consultations with the Project manager. The Consultant shall consult the group of experts involved in facilitating the elaboration of the draft of NPCP 2022-2026.

All activities and deliverables undertaken by the Consultant shall be discussed and planned in coordination with Secretary General of APSCF and Project manager, as well with the group of experts.

Consultant is expected to deliver the work electronically (in Word format) in English. The deliverable shall be sent to the APSCF Secretary General by email, with the Project manager & the group of experts in copy.

APSCF will regularly communicate with the Consultant and provide feedback and guidance on performance and all other necessary support so as to achieve objectives of the assignment, as well as remain aware of any upcoming issues related to Consultant’s performance and quality of work.

  1. PERFORMANCE INDICATORS FOR EVALUATION OF RESULTS

The performance of work will be evaluated based on the following indicators:

  • Completion of tasks specified in ToR;
  • Compliance with the established deadlines for submission of deliverables;
  • Quality of work (consideration of international human rights standards, precision, comprehensiveness, accuracy);
  • Demonstration of high standards of work with APSCF and UNICEF.
  1. QUALIFICATIONS AND EXPERIENCE
  • Master’s Degree or equivalent (5-year university education) in Public Administration, Social Policy, Law, Human Rights or other relevant fields;
  • At least (5) five years of proven professional experience as a researcher/ evaluator of projects/ policies/ structures, formulation of sector plans, planning of programmes and coordination of research work;
  • Demonstrated extensive knowledge of international human rights law, in particular concerning children’s rights;
  • Fluency in English;
  • Experience in working with NGOs and international organizations.
  1. BID CONTENT

The candidate is expected to submit:

  1. Technical proposal reflecting:
  • Relevant experience with similar type of assignments (max 300 words);
  • Proposed approach and methodology (max 1,500 words), including:
    • Timeline and milestones;
    • Risk and mitigation measures;
    • Ethical considerations and how the Consultant will address them;
  • Annex: Short Sample or links to related work previously conducted by the Consultant.

Detailed Curriculum Vitae with relevant information will be attached to the technical proposal.

Technical evaluation will be performed through a desk review of applications, and if necessary, may be supplemented by an interview.

  1. Financial proposal which shall indicate total budget estimated in US$, as well as daily, all-inclusive consultancy fee, multiplied with working days as provided by the deliverables table.

If not provided by ToR, APSCF will not reimburse costs not directly related to the assignment outcome. The contract does not allow payment of off-hours, medical insurance, taxes, and sick leave.

The final selection will be based on the principle of “best value for money” among the technically qualified candidates.

The payment will be done based on the following deliverables:

  • 50% upon submission of the Draft peer review report;
  • 50% upon submission of the Final peer review report.
  1. DESCRIPTION OF OFFICIAL TRAVEL INVOLVED

The consultancy is not requiring international nor local travels.

  1. SUPPORT PROVIDED BY APSCF

To achieve the above-mentioned objectives, APSCF will facilitate the contact with the group of experts and other relevant stakeholders, and will provide timely feedback to all deliverable to be presented by the Consultant.

APSCF will provide with relevant data and documents; contacts and lists of relevant technical people to work with.

The Consultant will use his/ her own computer to perform the tasks specified in the contract.

APSCF will directly cover the translation costs of the final Report and the interpretation costs for meetings and final workshop from the same project activity.

  1. ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS

The Consultant should be sensitive to beliefs, manners and customs and act with integrity and honesty while interacting with stakeholders and beneficiaries. Furthermore, the Consultant should protect the anonymity and confidentiality of individual information. The Consultant may not share findings with media in the Republic of Moldova or abroad concerning individual children, their families, alleged and sentenced adult offenders or institutions.

All participants should be informed about the context and purpose of the assignment, as well as about the confidentiality of the information shared.

The Consultant is allowed to use documents and information provided only for the tasks related to these ToR.

  1. DEADLINES AND OTHER CONDITIONS FOR SUBMITIONS

Deadline for submitting bids – 28.10.2021.

The bids will be sent by e-mail to office@aliantacf.md with the topic of the message "Offer peer review: international consultant".

Incomplete bids will not be considered for evaluation.

APSCF reserves the right to request or reject proposals without giving explanations to bidders.


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