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Terms of Reference for national consultant on conducting functional review of the new child care services in two pilot rayons of Baku City

UNITED NATIONS CHILDREN'S FUND

 

Terms of Reference for national consultant on conducting functional review of the new child care services in two pilot rayons of Baku City     

 

1.         Program information:                           Azerbaijan Country Program 2011-2015 

Program (No. & Name)                     Access to responsive child friendly services

Project   (No. & Name)                      Child Care reform     

Activity Reference                              Support to implementation of the pilot project on reforming local child care mechanism

2.         Background and Context: 

In March 2006 the President of the Azerbaijani Republic endorsed the State Program on De-Institutionalization and Alternative Care for 2006-2015 (SPDIAC) aimed at reintegration of children residing currently in various state institutions (de-institutionalization) with biological or foster families and at creation of alternative care services to support the de-institutionalization process.  The major focus of the Program is to reduce the number of children placed in the residential care institutions and to establish a sustainable system of alternative child care and family support mechanisms. The desirable aim is to gradually phase out the institutional care and to move to more family oriented community services.

 

Considerable amount of work has been carried out since the adoption of the State Program, including establishment of the specialized Department on De-institutionalization and Child Protection under the Ministry of Education, adoption of the Master Plan of Transformation of Child Care Residential Institutions, cost comparison analysis of state child care services vs. alternative ones; and development of different by-laws and regulations to allow alternative community-based services can be set up and run by government and non-state actors.

 

In 2010, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the Ministry of Education, Ministry of labor and Social Protection, State Committee on Family, Women and Children Affairs and UNICEF to implement a two-year long pilot project in order to improve coordination and speed up the implementation of the SPDIAC. The MoU clearly set out responsibilities of each government agency and UNICEF to coordinate activities in order to model establishment of the local level mechanism of reintegration of children (living in the state care institutions) to families and other alternative family-like services. The project has been implemented in Khazar and Surakhani rayons of Baku City, covering seven residential care institutions under the management of the Ministry of Education.

 

Significant achievements and milestones have been made during the implementation of the provision of the MoU. The three government agencies have worked towards establishing legal framework for the pilot project, designing, developing and financing alternative care services, establishing gatekeeping mechanism to prevent un-necessary institutionalization of children, and raising awareness among the population about the importance of family environment for child’s wellbeing. On its part, UNICEF has supported the Ministry of Education to undertake a mid-term review of the SPDIAC in 2011, which has informed achievements and gaps in the implementation of the State Program, and put forth important recommendations and suggestions on the way forward towards reforms.

 

UNICEF intends to conduct a functional review of the activities undertaken within the framework of MoU by the three government agencies. A national consultant will be hired to support the international consultant in conducting this exercise to inform the Government of Azerbaijan, UNICEF and other actors in the country on major milestones, achievements, gaps in the implementation, best practices and recommendations for future replication and policy considerations.

 

3.         Purpose of the assignment:

 

The purpose of this assignment is

·         to review to what extend the pilot project facilitated coordination and cooperation between the parties of the MoU;

·         to assess the level of implementation of responsibilities of each party under the MoU;

·         to review the laws, policies and regulations developed within the pilot project:

·         to analyze the financial allocations made by the ministries to the implementation of the project;

·         to  measure the impact of the activities targeted children and families that benefited from the pilot project;

·         to compare and contrast the planned activities vs. activities undertaken within the project;

·         to identify major gaps in the implementation of the project, including main barriers and reasons for such gaps;

·         to provide set of key policy and strategy recommendations for the government and each party of the MoU;

·         to assess quality of the newly established child care services and a need for scaling them up to the national level;

·         to advise on the feasibility of scaling up the pilot mechanism in other parts of the country.

 

The results of this assessment will further current reforms on child care, social protection and poverty reduction in the country through informing decision makers and will also support the implementation of the SPDIAC.  

 

The period under review is: 2010-2013.

 

Key intended users of this assessment are:

·         UNICEF and international partners;

·         Cabinet of Ministers of Azerbaijan

·         Ministry of Education, Ministry of Labor and Social Protection, State Committee on Family, Women and Children Affairs;

·         Ministry of Finance;

·         National Parliament of Azerbaijan;

·         Other interested parties.

 

Key stakeholders are:

·         UNICEF

·         Ministry of Education, Ministry of Labor and Social Protection, State Committee on Family, Women and Children Affairs;

·         State care institutions under review in the two pilot districts;

·         Children and families covered by the Project;

·         Local and international non-state actors operating in the pilot areas of the Project;

 

 

4.         Duty station:   Baku, Azerbaijan

 

 

5.         Supervisor: Ramiz Behbudov, Child Protection Specialist

 

 

6.         Major tasks to be accomplished:

 

Overall approach to the Review:

The review is expected to be based on the Human Rights Based Approach and be guided by the UN CRC and CRPD and their principles as well as other international instruments such as CEDAW. Reference to the outstanding recommendations of the UN CRC Concluding Observations 2012 needs to be made while assessing the results of the project and its overall impact on the situation of children in the area of social protection and child protection. Gender perspective also needs to be mainstreamed into the review process and taken into account while making conclusions, developing recommendations and documenting results and lessons learned.     

 

Within its focus on equity, UNICEF pays particular attention to children from the most disadvantaged and excluded groups and fulfillment of their rights to survival, life, protection and participation in family, community and social life. In the context of child protection in Azerbaijan this particularly applies to children with disabilities, children from low-income families, children under risk of being institutionalized and children living in long-term state residential care facilities. In the course of the current review participation of children from these groups needs to be ensured to the extent possible. Their rights and best interests also need to be taken into account while developing recommendations for scaling up.  

 

Key informants:

§  Officials from Ministry of Education, Ministry of Labor and Social Protection and State Committee on Family, Women and Children Affairs;

§  UNICEF and non-state actors participated/implemented projects in the pilot areas together with the parties;

§  Children and families (extent possible)

 

Ethical considerations

Ethical considerations need to be taken into account while interviewing children.    

 

7.             Deliverables

The national consultant should work with the international to meet these deadlines and deliveries: Final report of 20 pages (excluding annexes, if any), which will highlight all the elements discussed above.

 

Schedule of deliverables:

By November 15, 2013: Contract signed

By November 25, 2013: Methodology and instruments developed and agreed with UNICEF

By December 25, 2013: Field work completed

By January 10, 2014: First draft report available

By January 20, 2014: Second draft report available

By January 30, 2014: Final report available

 

 

8.                  Time-Frame:

 

The selected consultant will work for the period of November-January 2014 based on deliverables and the exact schedule of activities.

 

9.                  Qualifications or specialized knowledge/experience required:

 

The national consultant will be responsible for supporting the international consultant to undertake the Review through collecting necessary materials for desk review, setting up meetings with all the stakeholders for interviews and participating in the data collection and writing up the evaluation report.

 

The qualifications, experience and competencies required from the national consultant will be the following:

§     Advanced degree in social sciences, public policy, public administration.

§     3-5 years of professional experience at the national level with previous experience of research, documentation and evaluation of similar projects.

§     Excellent communication and interpersonal skills.

§     Strong analytical and conceptual thinking.

§     Strong organizational skills.

§     Familiarity with UNICEF’s mission and mandate an asset.

§     Fluency in Azerbaijani and English.

 

9.                             10.    Estimated cost :

 

Consultancy fee is to be proposed by a potential individual and agreed with UNICEF in line with UN rules and regulations.

 

UNICEF does not provide or arrange health insurance coverage for consultants.

11.        Prepared by:

 

Ramiz Behbudov

Child Protection Specialist                                                                           Signature and Date:

12.        Authorized by:

 

Rashed Mustafa

Deputy Representative                                                                                 Signature and Date:

13.        Read and signed by:

          

Consultant

            (Name and Title)                                                                      Signature and Date:

14.     Application:

Interested individuals should send:

a)      A Project Proposal;

b)      Individual resume;

c)      reference of previous relevant work (if applicable);

in a sealed envelope/email to:

 

Human Resources

United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)

Dalgha Plaza, III floor

24 Neftchilar Ave,

Baku AZ1095, Azerbaijan

or send the documents mentioned above electronically to baku@unicef.org

 

All applications will be treated with strict confidentiality. UNICEF is an equal opportunity employer.

UNICEF is mandated by the United Nations General Assembly to advocate for the protection of children's rights, to help meet their basic needs and to expand their opportunities to reach their full potential.

 

Deadline: November 10, 2013, 15:00hrs GMT+4

 

For further information please contact: Ramiz Behbudov at rbehbudov@unicef.org

 

 

 

 
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