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Technical assistance on planning, designing and conducting Young Voices Opinion Poll

UNITED NATIONS CHILDREN'S FUND
Terms of reference for research agency to provide technical assistance on planning, designing and conducting Young Voices Opinion Poll in the selected districts of Azerbaijan

1. Program information:                           
      Programme (No. & Name) :039-SI202 Community based integrated service  
      Project   (No. & Name)    :SI202-10 Youth Participation and Sport
      Activity Reference    :Child and Youth Participation in decision-making process
                                                                 Facilitation of youth opinion poll on the issues of children and   young people's concern/interest

2. Background and Context:                                                                                                                                          
In 1992 the Azerbaijan Republic ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child, subsequently; the Azerbaijani Parliament adopted a law on the Rights of the Child. In spite of the fact that several laws and directives have been approved or adopted on the Rights of the Child, significant changes have not been made in the society. One crucial Right of the Child that has not yet been satisfactorily achieved is the right to participation. The right to participation is based upon the necessity for young people to understand the forces that affect their lives, the need to build knowledge and understanding and to develop the skills and attitudes that will help young people to shape the communities in which they live. Several actions focused on youth related issues have been undertaken by government, as well as non-governmental organizations, however, young people’s participation in the decision making process has not been properly ensured at the national level, moreover, at the local level young people’s participation is not ensured in society.

In relation to the progress towards the higher – level results “Mechanism are in place to enable children and young people to participate in decisions affecting their lives”, Azerbaijan’s first Child Parliament was established in 2007 as a genuine institution for child and youth participation. The National Parliament has given the Child Parliament a real role in the identification, discussion, and formulation of petitions/recommendations in respect of youth affairs to ensure child rights are represented in Azerbaijan. UNDAF MRT also added additional country programme output related with youth participation in decision making process, namely “CP Output 2.14.1: SPPRSD includes views of children and young people gathered through participatory processes”

In 2001, the Young Voices survey was conducted on a very large scale with involvement of 15,200 children and young people interviewed in 35 countries, including Azerbaijan. 400 interviews among children (aged 9-13) and young people (aged 14-17) were conducted in Azerbaijan. The interviews took place between December 2000 and February of 2001. The results showed that only 20% of children and young people in Azerbaijan belong to an organized group or club, with most mentioning sport clubs (7%) and 5% referring to extracurricular classes; While 16% of the children polled feel that their opinion is well respected by the local government when making any decisions that relate to children, 81% feel their opinion is not considered enough; Children would like to be consulted more on school issues (34%), as well as decisions regarding the future (21%). In consideration of the situation described above, UNICEF and Ministry of Youth and Sport intend to conduct Young Voices Opinion Poll within the wider framework of facilitating and increasing children and young people’s participation in decision making processes. UNICEF Azerbaijan, based on AWP for 2008 will support the Ministry of Youth and Sport in planning, designing and facilitating Young Voices Opinion Poll in the country.

The current initiative to conduct Young Voices Opinion Poll will represent a first step in facilitation young people’s participation in the decision making processes or make their voices heard. Does the adult world really know what children think? Do the decision-makers have any idea of children's hopes, ambitions or concerns? And if they did, would they use this knowledge to tailor services at home, school and in the community to better reflect children's real needs and desires? Some of what the children say will make adults uncomfortable. They speak eloquently and painfully about violence and injustice, about discrimination and not being heard. But they do also tell of many positive things: how much they appreciate love and support, how hopeful they are about the future and how, despite current difficulties, they very much want to contribute to building a better world for all. Young Voices Opinion Poll will find out children's views and insight into a wide range of important topics - which is what UNICEF has attempted to do with these opinion polls.

The process will also play an important role in increasing young people’s awareness regarding democracy and democratic values, and human and child rights, positively affecting changes in public opinion and stereotypes. The initiative will contribute to establishing democratic values, and in the formation of young leaders and activists, as a result of which young people will become key players in ensuring the future development of democratic society in the country. The activity “Facilitation of Youth Opinion Poll” is a part of the Annual Work Plan signed between UNICEF and Ministry of Youth and Sport for the year of 2008. 
3. Purpose of the assignment:

An organization/agency is expected to provide technical assistance in planning, designing and implementation of young voices opinion poll among young people of 18-24 age in 5 selected economical regions of Azerbaijan to give them the opportunity to have their opinions, views and concerns heard and widely shared with their governments, families and the public at large.
Specific objectives include:
- Identify the problems and issues that young people themselves see as priorities.
- Identify priority areas for working with young people through NGOs, schools, community groups, etc. in following up on the survey.
- Help governments, NGOs, community groups, teachers, business leaders, the media and young people themselves to gain a better understanding of children's perceptions regarding their rights and identify key areas in need of improvement and change.
- Help UNICEF and its partners better understand children's awareness and perceptions regarding their rights.
- Obtain information that complements existing data, which can be used by UNICEF and its development partners to advocate on behalf of children and youth with the aim of developing stronger and more relevant situation analyses, policies and programmes.
- Identify areas for further research and data collection.
- Provide information for effective democracy and good governance.
4. Duty station: Selected districts of Azerbaijan/Baku
5. Supervisor: The selected institution will work under supervision of Program Communication Officer and Policy Planning Officer
6. Major tasks to be accomplished:

Young Voices Opinion Poll will mostly employ quantitative approach and use face-to-face questionnaires with selected respondents as the main methodological tool. However, the selected institution is also expected to conduct 3-4 focus group discussions to validate/explain some of the findings of the survey.
 
Specific tasks include:
- Submit a project proposal, which will include a detailed survey design (literature review, research questions, sampling framework, timeframe etc.) and budget
- Refine the proposal after discussions with UNICEF and the Ministry of Youth and Sport
- Develop and pre-test survey questionnaires
- Prepare a manual and conduct training for interviewers
- Complete sampling in selected economic regions
- Administer the questionnaires with regular supervision
- Enter the data into the database and clean the database
- Analyze the data
- Prepare draft and final reports in English and Azerbaijani
7.          Outcomes and deliverables:
- Project proposal including proposed methodologies, timetable, staff and budget – 6 June, 2008
- “Young Voices Opinion Poll” First draft report – 5 August 2008
- “Young Voices Opinion Poll” Final report – 20 August 2008
- Presentation at the National Youth Forum – date to be defined
8.        Time-Frame:  16 June – 20 September, 2008
9.        Qualifications or specialized knowledge/experience required:
- Staff with advanced university degree in public policy or a related field;
- At least 7 years of professional experience in a related field particularly in social issues
- Strong analytical and research skills
- Access to necessary sources and data
- Proven communication and facilitation skills
- Proven ability to negotiate/interact with senior government staff
- Previous positive experience with UNICEF is desirable
9. 10.      Estimated cost:
Consultancy fee is to be proposed by a potential contractor and agreed with UNICEF in line with UN rules and regulations. Proposed budget should be in line with UNICEF budget format
 

11. Procedures and logistics:
- The study should be conducted in close consultations with UNICEF and Ministry of Youth and Sport
- UNICEF will share with the selected institution all the relevant materials it possesses as well as support the study with required expertise.
- The selected institution undertakes contacts and meetings with all the relevant state institutions related to information, databases etc.
- UNICEF will translate the study into English
- Ministry of Youth and Sport and UNICEF holds copyright
- All questionnaires and database should be submitted to Ministry of Youth and Sport and UNICEF
- Selected institutions can give information to press only after approval of MYS and UNICEF
12.     Prepared by: (Program/Project Officer)
          Elnur Aliyev, Programme Communication Officer                     Signature and Date: 
13.      Cleared by: Deputy Representative
           Gillian Wilcox              Signature and Date:

14.      Read and signed by:           
 (Name and Title)            Signature and Date:

15.     Application:

Interested  organizations/agencies requested to send:
a) Project proposal on young voices opinion poll,
b) the resume of each of the proposed team members
c) reference of previous relevant work (if available);
in a sealed envelop/email to:


Programme Communication Officer
Elnur Aliyev
United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
24 S.Dadashev St., AZ1073
Baku, Azerbaijan

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

Deadline: 6 June 2008

For further information please contact:

Elnur Aliyev,
Programme Communication Officer
Ealiyev@unicef.org

 

 

 
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