Request for proposals : Consultancy on Child Protection
According to the UNICEF Azerbaijan Country Program for 2005-2009, which is based on the UNDAF(United Nations Development Assistance Framework) for Azerbaijan, the child welfare reform, as a part of the child protection work, is one of the priority areas. Additionally, UNICEF Azerbaijan signed with the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Labor and Social Policy and the State Committee on Family Woman and Children Issues annual work plans for 2007, in which all parties agree to work jointly towards the implementation of the Child Protection Reform.
In March 2006 the President of the Azerbaijani Republic endorsed the State Program on De-Institutionalization and Alternative Care for 2006-2015 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 first to limit new admission to necessary minimum through strong gatekeeping mechanism and then to reduce the number of children placed in the residential care institutions by establishing a sustainable system of community based alternative child care and family support. The desirable aim is to gradually phase out the institutional care and to move to more family oriented community services. Currently, the state institutions are the only place where the children from vulnerable families are placed. At the community level, there is no proper mechanism of “gate-keeping” and there are no any adequate procedures to prevent the widespread “institutionalization” of children.
UNICEF Azerbaijan and the European Commission launched a joint project on supporting the implementation of the State Program and the Child Welfare Reform in Azerbaijan as a part of a wide Child Protection System Reform. Within this project UNICEF already undertook series of activates aimed at facilitating and enhancing the reform process. These included ongoing capacity building of the local Commissions on Minors and head of child institutions on basic networking, case management and gatekeeping procedures as well as UNICEF is working on the development of the grounds for future child welfare polices and structures. At the same time, UNICEF mapped and supports several community based child care services to prove its feasibility and necessity in Azerbaijan.
The Child Welfare Reform in currently entering the phase of its actual implementation, however, there is still lack of adequate data or mechanisms required for planning of the concrete activates. As a part of UNICEF’s support to the Azerbaijani Government, there is a plan to conduct two related activities in upcoming months aimed at: (i) enabling the Ministry of Education to regular identify and update the profile of children residing the state run institutions, their families and institution graduates, incl. reason for placement and gender dimensions as well as mapping the family support mechanism in region/s where children come from, and (ii) support the government in developing of a master plan for reforming residential child care institutions, including identification of reform budget estimation and responsible actors.
II. Request for Consultancy
III. Objectives of the consultancy
Provide the Azerbaijani Government with an adequate support in creation of a master plan for reforming residential child care institution as well as to develop a tool for systematic data collection on profile of children in the public care system under the Ministry of Education required for planned, in a near future, major de-institutionalization exercise.
IV. Tasks/Work assignment
1. Desk review of existing child protection materials developed in last two years. Study the available data developed by UNICEF/Government and other international and national organizations related to Azerbaijani child protection system.
The Master plan should aim at reducing the number of all types of present residential care facilities for children to the minimum and provide that the residential care is carried out in small size and family like institutional arrangements. Proposals will be developed for each institution in terms of the size to be reached over a defined period of time and in terms of program profile and staff.
4. Jointly with the Ministry of Education to design a system/mechanism for identification and updating the profiles of children in institutions, their families and institution graduates, incl. reason for placement and gender dimensions to enable adequate planning of the de-institutionalization process. The data collection should not be limited only to the information on the child/family situation but should also include mapping of the family support structures provided in the region/s the child/family originate from.
1. A final draft of master plan for reforming residential child care institutions, including identification of reform budget estimation and responsible actors developed and presented to the government. The draft should include deadlines and guidelines for Directors and staff in institutions in regard to their future activities, depending on their inclusion in one of the three regimes: moratorium on new entries, closure of the institution or institution in transformation.
2. A design of system/mechanism, with a comprehensive methodology, for identification and updating the profiles of children in institutions, their families and institution graduates, incl. reason for placement and gender dimensions to enable adequate planning of the de-institutionalization process developed and presented to the government. It should also include the training of the MoE’s staff on the use of the developed methodology and testing it in a selected child care institution.
3. A final implementation report with the recommendations for follow up action presented to UNICEF.
• Advanced university degree and/or academic background in social work, research and/or statistics, communication;
VII. Reporting procedure/Supervision
The consultant will be supervised and report to the UNICEF Child Protection Manager with regular de-briefing with the UNICEF Representative and Deputy Representative about the progress of the project.
The exact duration of the consultancy will be decided based on the selected project proposal. It is estimated that the consultant should complete its work by December 2007. The schedule of the activities will be agreed with the consultant based on the interactive communication between UNICEF and consultant. The initial deadline for submission of deliverables to UNICEF is 21 December 2007.
X. Required documentation for the tender
Applications for the implementation of the consultancy should be submitted to:
UNICEF Azerbaijan Country Office
The applications should include:
- Detailed project proposal (incl. methodology, time schedule, work plan and envisaged detailed budget)
The deadline for submission of project proposal is 7 October 2007