Terre des hommes Romania is looking for an expert for assessing the enagement of local stakeholders, infrastructure investments, and the sustainability of the SHINE project. For terms of reference, please see below
TERMS OF REFERENCE
External Evaluation for assessing the enagement of local stakeholders, infrastructure investments, and the sustainability of the SHINE project
Terre des hommes in Romania and the region of Eastern Europe
Terre des hommes (Tdh) is a Swiss non-governmental organization that develops programs and projects in more than 40 countries to protect children in need. In Romania, Terre des hommes had a continuous presence since 1992 and every year thousands of children and their families benefit from projects under our three main interventions: (1) Strengthening child protection and juvenile justice systems, (2) Protection of children affected by migration, and (3) Social inclusion of Roma and other vulnerable groups. Following an assessment done by the global child safeguarding movement Keeping Children Safe, Terre des hommes has been awarded the highest recognition - “Level 1 certification” - for safeguarding children. Tdh’s approach aims to reduce the social exclusion, neglect and/or abuse of vulnerable children by supporting local initiatives through technical assistance, grant allocation and community building.
The organization encourages children to make the right decisions to complete their personal capabilities, giving them the chance to build their future. The organization's activity includes close collaboration with parents, community members and state institutions. Particular attention is paid to the sustainability of the services offered.
SHINE (Support for Health, Social Infrastructure and Education in Bacau County, Romania) is a project that aims to improve the lives of disadvantaged children by investing in education, health and social services infrastructure. The project is implemented between June 2017 and December 2019 and it has three phases: first phase of the project involved a needs assessment in 37 communities from Bacau county (towns and communes) in order to identify and prioritize community (infrastructure) needs related to children’s wellbeing. Consultations were held with local representatives, teachers, parents and children. This phase lasted until December 2017. From January 2018, the second phase started, which involves the realisation of the infrastructure objectives agreed upon during the consultations: playgrounds, sport fields, school equipment and furniture, toilets, school buses, buildings renovation. Phase three focuses on the sustainability of the investments and started in June 2019, by training teachers on establishing Integrity Clubs of young people that will monitor the investments and their maintenance in their communities in real time, through an innovative application.
Phase 1: needs assessment in 37 communities through consultations with local stakeholders
In June 2019, the SHINE project started by setting up the Tdh team in Bacau consisting of a project manager, 4 community facilitators and 1 financial manager. This team was trained by external consultants on conducting consultative, community needs assessments. With the support of local authorities and UNICEF, we then entered into 37 communities for the series of meetings. On average 5 meetings were held in each community, as follows: 1 introductory meeting, 3 Focus Group discussions (with children, parents, teachers & other actors from the community) and 1 final meeting for agreeing upon the investment. In total, 230 meetings were held in 37 villages and cities through which 2523 participants (816 children, 1707 adults) were consulted. Based on the priority needs identified through the consultative process, together with an official site supervisor, an initial estimiation of the costs of the investments was prepared and presented to the donor.
Phase 2: Investments
In agreement with the donor, the second phase of the project (putting in place the infrastructure investments), started in January 2018. A total number of 38 investments were established, 1 in every community, except for one locality, were we have two investments. The investments include:
13 investments in school equipment and furniture
8 multisport fields
3 building rehabilitation
2 heating systems
2 school buses
Phase 3: Sustainability, monitoring and evaluation
Simultanously with the investment constructions, a process of creating local ownership for sustainability started. Through different activities, local stakeholders are involved in the project to not only raise awareness but actually involve them as active ‘change makers’ in their community. Contribution from local authorities is required for the infrastructure investments both in money and in kind. Activities and trainings for children and young people are involving them in design of the investments, maintenance etc. In addition, a partnership was established with Integrity Action (an UK based organization) to put in place a real-time feedback mechanism. Integrity Clubs of young people are created in the communities, that will, with the support of teachers, use an innovate application to monitor in real-time the status of the investments and report any issue thant needs to be fixed.
Summary of the Evaluation Activities
The evaluation will focus on the following aspects of the project:
1. The process of engaging the local stakeholders; How have the local stakeholders in the communities (children, parents, teachers, local authorities) been engaged in the project so far?
Semi-structured interviews and focus groups with various stakeholders will be conducted, for example, using the Most Significant Change technique.
2. Assessment of the investment outputs; What is the current status of the investments? Have the investments been done according to the original plan? What have been the challenges of putting in place the investments?
On-site visits in the communities will be conducted. The final result will include, among others, an interactive map with images and data on the investments.
3. Assessment of the sustainability of the investments; How are investments maintained? How are the local stakeholders involved in maintance? How promising is the feedback mechanism?
Interviews will be conducted, and collaboration with the evaluators from the feedback mechanism will be organized to avoid overlap of efforts.
Experts profile / Applicant Requirements:
Long-lasting studies (master or PhD) in social sciences (sociology, social assistance, psychology, political science etc.);
Previous experience in counducting evauation reports with governmental or non-governmental organisations;
Excellent research writing and communication skills;
Demonstrated ability to synthesise and critically analyse a wide range of material from primary and secondary data sources and to present information in a concise yet thorough form;
Experience in working with vulnerable groups, including children;
Excellent command of English;
Draft evaluation report, to be discussed with Tdh team, by mid-October;
Final evaluation report, (delivered by 30th of October 2019 of minimum 25 pages proving content on the three objectives), plus a section (additional minimum 5 pages) on lessons learned, that will help Tdh Romania to improve further interventions;
Interactive map of the investments (delivered by 15th of November 2019).
The financial offer must include all costs and fees related to the execution of the tasks. Costs must be shown in USD without VAT (if applicable). Payments will be made on the basis of a Service Contract with a legal entity, after signing the act of receiving and handing over the final version of the report.
Ownership / use of results:
The ownership of the results / deliverables obtained in the framework of the study/context analysis, including the intellectual property right, belongs to the Terre des hommes Foundation as the beneficiary of the evaluation.
Clauses on failure to perform tasks:
In the event of failure to perform the duties of the expert under this Terms of Reference document,
as well as the non-fulfillment of any commitments assumed under the contract concluded with it,
Terre des hommes is entitled to terminate the contract and claim damages. The evaluator will not be held liable for breach of obligations if prevented by force majeure. The expert(s) will make every effort to reduce any damage caused by force majeure.
The application file must include:
Short description of a methdological approach/plan (max. 3 pages)
CV in English;
A list of research papers/ articles published indicating the sources where these papers can be accessed;
Criteria for evaluation and selection of application dossiers:
Level of expertise of the applicant;
Relevant previous experience;
Interested experts are requested to send their application package by the 28th of August 2019 at 11:00 AM. Documents can be submitted electronically to the following e-mail addresses: email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org.