Individual Consultant: Gender and Youth Assessment

  • Mid-level, Short-term contract assignment
  • Posted on 15 April 2021

Job Description

Catholic Relief Services/Ethiopia

Development Food Security Activity (DFSA)

Scope of Work: Gender and Youth Assessment

Start Date: April 15, 2021

Deadline for Proposal submissions: April 30, 2021

Proposed Start Date: May, 2021

Estimated End Date: August, 2021

Contact person receiving Applications: Tiruset Haile

Contact E-mail address: tiruset.haile@crs.org

Background/Introduction

CRS’ DFSA is a USAID Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA) supported initiative to sustain and build upon the food security improvements achieved under the Government of Ethiopia’s (GoE) framework of the Productive Safety Net Program (PSNP). The goal of the CRS DFSA is Food, Nutrition and Livelihoods Security of Households and Communities Improved and Sustained. The DFSA has three Purposes (PSNP Systems Strengthening, Economic Livelihoods, and Health and Nutrition) and one cross cutting Sub-Purpose (Gender and Youth). This Activity operates from September 30, 2016 through September 29, 2021.

CRS’ DFSA is an integrated approach in addressing the various causes of community and household shocks and food insecurity. The activity uses a phased approach to create demand, improve resources, strengthen capacity levels of and linkages between interdependent community service providers, and transition necessary program elements over to a more fully capable network of local government, program participants and local partners.

In regard to CRS’ DFSA, gender and age considerations are the most important determinants to sustain its development outcomes as men and women, boys and girls have different developmental needs and interests, roles and responsibilities, knowledge, talents and life experiences in the society. CRS’ DFSA also understands social and gender norms and values affect the relationship and power dynamics between males and females at the household and community level in its implementing areas.

CRS DFSA has been integrating gender and youth considerations at all levels of its programing to bring positive behavioral changes among women, men, boys and girls which facilitate gender equity and equality, women and girls empowerment; reduce GBV; and increase positive youth development, contributing to the achievement of the DFSA strategic objectives. Major key interventions of the DFSA since inception include mobilizing and empowering communities, enhancing the knowledge and skills of women and youth, improving livelihoods and access to and control of women and youth on income and assets, and improving participation of women and youth in leadership and decision making as well as working with formal and informal structures to make them women and youth responsive. Such interventions in turn result in improved food security and resilience of HHs.

The DFSA team conducted a gender and youth analysis in 2017 which identified gender and youth issues and gaps; provided benchmarks on the situation of women and youth in program implementation areas; and provided recommendations to improve the un-equal opportunities of women, men, boys and girls in participating and benefiting from development interventions. Following this analysis, the DFSA developed and has been implementing detailed action plans specific to each sector, resulting in noticeable improvements in the lives of women, youth and all project participants. These actions have also improved the performance of community systems and structures.

Since 2021 is the final year for CRS DFSA, undertaking a gender and youth assessment[1] is necessary to evaluate the changes brought about on gender equality, women and youth empowerments as a result of DFSA interventions through addressing the real development needs of women, men, girls and boys at household and community as well as institution levels; and contributions to achievement of DFSA strategic objectives. The findings and recommendations of this assessment will be used as inputs to implementation of any follow on RFSA (across USAID’s RFSA portfolio) and guide CRS/Ethiopia’s future programing with respect to gender and youth integration.

Objectives of Gender and Youth Assessment

The overall purpose of this assessment is to evaluate the contributions of CRS Ethiopia’s DFSA interventions in improving the livelihoods and food security status of women, men and youth with specific focus on the DFSA gender and youth approaches; behavioral changes among the project participants and communities towards women and youth; and responsiveness of formal and informal structures and systems to women and youth needs and interests.

The specific objectives of the gender and youth assessment are:

DFSA interventions

  • To assess the different effects of DFSA interventions on women and youth participants in terms of improving their livelihoods, HH nutrition and resilience to shocks.
  • To assess the impact of DFSA interventions (P1, P2, P3 and SPX) in bringing about changes to improved participation of women and youth in leadership and decision making at HH and community levels.
  • To assess the contributions of DFSA interventions (P1, P2, P3 and SPX) in improving access to and control over resources at household and community levels by women and youth and how these have contributed to improved livelihoods and food security.
  • To assess evaluate the status of attitudinal and behavioral changes among community members towards women and youth because of DFSA SPX interventions
  • To assess the changes in the reduction of GBV and harmful traditional practices (HTPs) in the project areas because of the DFSA interventions and gender and youth approaches.
  • To assess the changes on formal and informal systems and structures (e.g. food security task forces, watershed committees, irrigation users groups, WASH committees, community conversation groups, SILC, marketing groups) in terms of their openness and inclusiveness for women and youth as a result of DFSA implementation; and changes in recognition of women and youth contributions.
  • Identify gender gaps (internal and external to the DFSA) that have impeded the achievement of DFSA goals and strategic objectives and propose possible strategies to address identified gender gaps by future project/programs

Gender and youth approaches

  • To assess the effectiveness of all DFSA gender and youth approaches and strategies that have been applied by the project (which include: community conversation, school gender clubs, The faithful House/Islamic family House(TFH/IFH), functional literacy; leadership trainings, male engagement, youth voluntarism, capacity building of gender and youth stakeholders, gender champions and working with local systems and structures) in bringing positive changes/impacts in terms of gender equity/equality, women empowerment and youth engagement.
  • To Assess how gender and youth integration have contributed to the achievement of the 3 SOs as well as the goal of the program and what impact on project participants
  • To identify the best practices and key DFSA intervention/strategies from existing approaches and interventions that contributed to a more gender responsive program implementation and inform programs.

Research Questions:

To assess the different effects of DFSA interventions on women and youth project participants in terms of improving their livelihoods, HH nutrition and being resilient to shocks

  • How have the DFSA interventions intentionally targeted and supported women and youth?
  • What specific livelihood interventions were planned and implemented with women and youth and how did women and youth improve their livelihoods?
  • What specific health nutrition interventions were planned and implemented with women and youth? and how did these activities improve W& Y nutritional diversity?
  • What specific support provided to women and youth enhanced their resiliency to shocks? What is the evidence of this improvement?

To assess the DFSA interventions (P1, P2, P3 and SPX) in bringing changes on improved participation of women and youth in leadership and decision making at HH and community levels

  • How did the DFSA sectors interventions promote women and youth participation and what was the result in terms of benefiting women and youth as well as the project participants as a whole?
  • To what extent has the participation of women and youth in decision making improved? How was this recognized by different stakeholders?

To assess the contributions of DFSA interventions (P1, P2, P3 and SPX) in improving access to and control over resources at HH and community levels by women and youth and how these have contributed to improved livelihoods and food security

  • To what extent did women’ and youth’ access to and control over resources improve their livelihoods? What interventions/approaches were applied to bring such change?
  • What preventative measures were taken to avoid conflicts on power dynamics between women and men as well as intergenerationally in the HH as well as community levels related to resources and participation? and what were the results?

To assess the status of attitudinal and behavioral changes among community members towards women and youth as a result of DFSA SPX interventions

  • To what extent have community attitudes and behaviors changed towards women and youth as a result of DFSA SPX interventions? What are the indicators of such changes and impact on the status of women and youth?
  • What key attitudes and behaviors have been changed? (e.g. related to GBV, HTPs, gender roles, gender equity/equality, joint decision making, women and youth participation in leadership and decision making, women/girls’ empowerment, youth engagement, male engagement in childcare and domestic tasks); and how have these changes impacted women and youth?
  • Which SPX approaches have resulted in such positive changes? Why?
  • How can such positive changes be sustained in the communities?
  • What can DFSAs or new projects do differently to bring improved behavior changes in a short period of time, compared to the current DFSA?
  • What unanticipated changes in attitudes and behaviors (both positive and negative) have resulted from DFSA interventions? How can these changes be mitigated (negative) or replicated and scaling up (positive)?

To assess the changes in the reduction of GBV and HTPs in the project areas as a result of the DFSA interventions and gender and youth approaches

  • To what extent has GBV and HTP been reduced in the target areas? How can this be evidenced? What impact has been observed?
  • What opportunities exist to sustain positive changes? How?

To assess the changes on formal and informal systems and structures in terms of their openness and inclusiveness for women and youth since DFSA implementation and changes in the recognition of women and youth contributions.

  • What were the contributions of the DFSA to strengthening local formal community structures and systems and what changes have been observed that impacted women and youth?
  • What is the current level of participation of women and youth in formal and informal structures? What was the original level of participation before the DFSA, according to community members and leaders? (Both in membership and leadership positions and also quality of participation); how did these changes benefit women and youth as well as the community as a whole?
  • How can these changes be expanded and sustained? What additional efforts were exerted to support this?

Identify gender gaps that may have impeded the achievement of DFSA goals and strategic objectives; and propose possible strategies to address identified gender gaps by future project/programs

  • What were the key gender and youth related challenges that limit(ed) the effective achievement of DFSA SOs and Goal? What efforts were done to minimize their consequences?
  • What more effective strategies or approaches could be considered to address such challenges for future programming? And how?

To assess the effectiveness of all gender and youth approaches and strategies that have been applied by the DFSA (which include community conversations, school gender clubs, The Faithful House/Islamic Family House TFH/IFH, functional literacy, leadership trainings, male engagement, youth volunteerism, capacity building of gender and youth stakeholders, gender champions and working with local systems and structures) in bringing positive changes /impacts in terms of gender equity/equality, women’s empowerment and youth engagement

  • Which of the DFSA gender and youth approaches have been effective in bringing positive changes? Why? How did these approaches impact gender and power relationships and other gender and age dynamics?
  • Which approaches/strategies were more appropriate to bring positive changes for specific key gender themes (participation, access to resources, power dynamics, attitudes and social norms, gender roles and division of labor)? Why? What is the evidence?
  • Which of the DFSA approaches/strategies were more acceptable by the communities and stakeholders? Why?
  • Which of the DFSA approaches/strategies were more recognized by the communities and other stakeholders? Why?
  • How can DFSA or new projects improve the current approaches to achieve gender equality and women and youth empowerment?

Assess how gender and youth integration have contributed to the achievement of the 3 SOs as well as the goal of the program and what impact on project participants

  • How effective was the DFSA gender and youth integration approach? What key changes achieved in terms of targeting, participation that contributed to achieve the SOs?
  • How was buy-in from the DFSA team achieved for implementing the gender and youth integration approach? What challenges faced in the process and what measures have been taken to improve?
  • How could DFSA do the integration differently? what can be recommended for future programing?
  • What testimonies available that demonstrate the effective integration of gender and youth in DFSA?

To identify the best practices and key DFSA intervention/ strategies from existing approaches and interventions that contributed to a more gender responsive program implementation and inform CRS future projects and programs

  • What lessons could be learned from the DFSA gender and youth strategies applied?
  • Which approaches/strategies could be expanded to inform CRS future projects and programs? why? What stories and testimonies could verify this?

Scope of Work

The Gender and Youth Assessment will be review and analyze existing literature including various DFSA progress reports, success stories, assessments and annual plans and other NGOs’ reports operating in DFSA intervention woredas, the academic community, as well as USAID documents such as assessments, evaluations, and proposals, data (gender-differentiated development indicators and constraints), and gender analyses. The assessment will also collect primary data from different stakeholders on the changes brought on the lives of project participants focusing on women and youth participation in leadership and decision making, access to and control over resources, GBV and HTP, gender roles, social and gender norms, power dynamics, and improvements on livelihoods and nutrition using qualitative data collection tools like KII and FGDs as well as other participatory tools. The primary data collection will be done in all the nine DFSA woredas.

The assessment will be conducted by an international consultant, closely working with the DFSA DCoP for Gender/Youth. Research assistants/data collectors will be hired for primary data collection. The study team will consist of DFSA gender and youth and MEAL teams both at CRS and partners levels. CRS Senior Technical Advisor for Gender and Integral Human Development, Youth Technical Advisor, and CRS EARO Technical Advisor for Gender will provide technical support in reviewing the Scope of Work, assessment tools, and reports produced by the consultant. The consultant will support in development/adoption of assessment tools, data collection and analysis, report preparation, and recommendations. The DFSA team will invite members of the USAID Gender Champions Network to collaborate during the study.

Application of Findings and Recommendations

The gender and youth assessment will evaluate effectiveness of the DFSA gender and youth strategies and approaches in bringing the intended changes in the lives of the project participants; improving systems and structures at community and institution levels as well as achieving the DFSA strategic objectives and goal. The findings and learnings from this assessment will help DFSA to measure its effective contributions in achieving gender equality; women and youth empowerment which in turn contribute to achieving its goal. Moreover, the recommendations that come out from the assessment will inform ongoing project implementation and new project designs within CRS. The learning could extend to other stakeholders who are committed to address gender and youth issues. In line with past practice, the findings of this assessment will be shared with development stakeholders using different platforms including the USAID gender champions network and the national gender equality network meetings and events, as well as government sponsored/organized events.

Research Methodology and Tools

DFSA will be applying a combination of gender and youth analytical frameworks and tools to gather data, analyze and produce reports. Based on the key gender and youth issues identified in the project ToC and the issues addressed by DFSA interventions, the assessment will apply frameworks and guiding principles that CRS employs. The Integral Human Development Framework, Social-Ecological Model and Positive and Youth Development Frameworks will be the key. CRS’ Global Gender Conceptual Framework and the CRS/Ethiopia gender strategy will be also referenced. Moreover, USAID’s Gender Equality and Female Empowerment Policy and Youth Policy will inform tool development.

Data collection: The assessment will use both primary and secondary data through qualitative data collection tools. Desk review and analysis of the existing literature around gender and youth, approaches and strategies and their contributions to bring gender equality, women and youth empowerment as well as improving food security, livelihoods, and nutrition.

KII, FGD and other relevant qualitative tools like activity calendar and case stories will be used to gather primary data and information; and explore in detail the qualitative changes on the participation and benefit of adult women and men as well as girls and boys in DFSA interventions and their livelihoods. Data and information will be gathered from male and female project participants, female and male youth, community leaders, DFSA staff, other key stakeholders (government and NGOs). If COVID-19 continues, and face to face discussions are restricted, DFSA could use mobile phones and virtual interviews as appropriate to collect data from some research participants. Using the learning from previous experience, CRS will collect contact information of sampled households and /or staff to conduct the interviews using mobile phones. Where a sampled household may lack a phone, CRS will work with its frontline staff to lend its tablets to the households until the interviews are completed. The data collection team will ensure COVID-19 precautionary/prevention measures as well as any existing Government of Ethiopia guidelines are entrenched in the methodology including data collection process. Examples include all enumerators having protective equipment such as masks and gloves as recommended by Ethiopia’s Ministry of Health.

Data Analysis: Thematic analysis will be used to analyze qualitative data. A comprehensive data analysis plan will be developed and tested before field work. Analysis will consider demographic and social differences including sex, age, marriage, and disability status of interview participants.

Gender analysis: The systematic gathering and examination of information on gender differences and social relations in order to identify, understand, and redress inequities based on gender. Gender analysis explores gender differences so policies, programs, and projects can identify and meet the different needs of females and males. It also facilitates the strategic use of the distinct knowledge and skills females and males possess.

Gender assessment: This is a review from a gender perspective of a current or recently completed project or activity. It assesses how a project addresses and responds to gender dynamics and inequalities. The assessment highlights successes and gaps in programming, identifying new opportunities to improve future programming. It often incorporates aspects of a gender analysis

Activities/Tasks to be Undertaken by the Consultant

  • Prepare technical proposal (consisting of background, objective, scope, methodology/tool, sampling procedure, method of data analysis, detail work plan) and financial proposal
  • Submit inception report consisting of assessment methodology, data collection tools/instruments, sampling plan, work plan timeline, criteria to select representative Kebeles
  • Discuss and agree on schedule, methodologies, and other arrangements for the assessment
  • Organize study team and conduct two days’ workshop on gender assessment framework and tools
  • Set criteria and select representative kebeles, and respondents (women, men, youth, boys and girls) for the study
  • Participate in selection of data collectors
  • Review and analyze project documents
  • Undertake tool testing at the field
  • Undertake data collection and analysis
  • Submit all the raw and processed data with disaggregation
  • Produce and submit first draft assessment report that contains executive summary, methodology, findings, conclusion, recommendations with actionable strategies that could inform new project design and programing in CRS and/or other stakeholders and final reports.
  • Conduct validation workshop to incorporate feedbacks and submit finalized gender and youth assessment report
  • Prepare a brief on the findings of the assessment with key recommendations that could be shared broadly.
  • Produce final gender and youth assessment report by incorporating feedback and inputs forwarded on the draft report by the workshop participants and other relevant reviewers

Deliverables/outputs

  • Technical and financial proposal for the gender and youth assessment
  • An inception report that includes detailed methodology clearly specifying the sampling procedures, sample size, data collection tools, and analysis techniques
  • Gender and youth assessment tools developed/adapted
  • A 2-day training on gender and youth assessment tools and methodologies delivered to study teams at field level
  • Lead data collection process
  • ½ day facilitation of validation workshop
  • A comprehensive gender and youth assessment report as indicated under section #6 above. maximum page limit for the report is 60 with 3 to 5 pages comprehensive executive summary
  • As part of the report key success stories with high resolution and self-explanatory photos
  • 3 pager brief, on the findings of the assessment
  • All primary data and information collected from research participants

Ethical issues

The researcher (s) should adhere to the following ethical issues:

  • All terms/conditions specified in the contract agreement
  • Conducting the assessment in a respectful manner: this includes not making any commitments to communities and any other persons, on behalf of CRS Ethiopia, USAID and partners
  • Adhering to timeframe and conditions outlined in the SoW and agreement
  • Confidentiality of the collected and analyzed data
  • Follow WHO GBV and COVID-19 guides while undertaking FGD and KII with research participants
  • Strict adherence to CRS’ safeguarding policy

Responsibility of DFSA CRS and IPs in the overall process of the study

  • Development of SoW
  • Review and provide comments/feedback on the various documents the consultant produces and submits
  • Hire research assistants/data collectors
  • Availing the necessary logistics during the assessment period including transport, ICT4D devices.
  • Organize and support in facilitating training for data collectors on the assessment tools, methodology and ethical considerations/requirements
  • Select study kebeles, beneficiaries and organize woreda level study team

Time Frame

The Gender and Youth Assessment will be conducted between May to August 2021. The assessment will have three phases including preparation, data collection, analysis and report preparation. The following table shows the main activities to be undertaken during the different phases. 42 payable days for consultant are estimated to carry out the gender and youth assessment in DFSA woredas and produce the report.

Qualifications and competencies needed for consultant

  • Knowledge of gender and youth issues at global, regional, and country (Ethiopia) level
  • Proven experience on undertaking gender and youth assessments
  • Understanding of CRS/DFSA programming approaches if possible
  • Experience in undertaking assessments, evaluation on food security projects or PSNP
  • Demonstrated experience in research, capacity building/training in gender integration/mainstreaming
  • Demonstrated experience on development of gender and youth strategies
  • Experience in undertaking assessments and studies sponsored by USAID
  • Experiences in undertaking similar assessments/evaluations
  • Demonstrated experience on quality report writing

About the Organization

CRS staff, alongside our partners and the people we serve, work daily to bring our mission and guiding principles to life. We share our stories of hope, compassion and solidarity to inspire others to join us in creating a more just and prosperous world for all.

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