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Conducting public awareness events to promote nutrition practices at individual, family and community levels

Terms of Reference for NGOs on conducting public awareness events to promote nutrition practices at individual, family and community levels

Programme information:
Programme (No. & Name) :                                      Communication for Development
Project   (No. & Name)    :                                      Promoting health and nutrition  
Activity Reference                 :                                      Public advocacy on health and nutrition

Contributing to Intermediate Result:
- 1.4 By the end of 2015, a strengthened health system addresses disparities and gaps (especially those related to poverty)  in access to quality mother, child health and nutrition services  and
- 2.2 By end of 2015, the government and CSOs addresses gaps in the institutional capacity (to promote positive and measurable social and behavioral outcomes (especially among vulnerable groups in targeted areas.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    

1. Background and justification: 
Azerbaijan has recorded impressive growth during the last five years: the poverty rate had fallen to 13% by 2008. However, this average not only hides widespread disparities and inequalities but also does not reflect problems in the areas of Health and Nutrition. The 2006 DHS clearly shows evidence of widespread nutritional disorders, both hidden (micronutrient deficiencies, like Iodine Deficiency Disorders, Iron Deficiency Anaemia) and visible (low birth weight, stunting, wasting) among women and children. Children in households in the lowest wealth quintile are substantially more likely to be anaemic than children in households in the wealthy quintiles. Around 55% of infants aged 6-11 months and the same percentage of children aged 12-23 months suffer from anaemia while prevalence of anaemia among 6- 59 months is 39%. Alarmingly, 37% of fertile age women, specifically 45% of pregnant women and 53 % of breastfeeding women, are affected by anaemia in Azerbaijan. A quarter of children under 5 years of age are too short for their age (indicator of chronic malnutrition, stunting) and 12 % are severely stunted, situations associated with their own or their mothers’ anaemia status, very low exclusive breastfeeding rates, and possible problems with complementary feeding practices. Only 12% of children fewer than 6 months of age are exclusively breastfed.

Therefore, ‘Communication for Development’ (C4D) strategies that promote behavior and social change are particularly essential.  While cost-effective, affordable and high-impact nutrition interventions save lives, they are not enough for long-term, sustained impact. In Azerbaijan, traditional family practices and low hygiene knowledge are contributing to the poor nutrition status of mothers and children.
To this end, project on promoting health and nutrition at national and district level encompasses two level of interventions (1) at institutional level to introduce BCC concept as new approach and (2) at district level to engage and empower individuals, communities to address the nutrition and hygiene practices among those of disadvantaged and marginalized to be in line with UNICEF Azerbaijan Country Programme Document contributing to PCR 1: “By the end of 2015, more children benefit from responsive and child-friendly services, with reduced disparities in outcomes” through IR 1.4  strengthening health system addressing disparities and gaps (especially those related to poverty)  in access to quality mother, child health and nutrition services and PCR2: “Improved attitudes towards fulfillment of child rights” through IR 2.2 addressing the gaps in institutional capacity to promote positive and measurable behavioral outcomes.
Therefore, innovative C4D strategies and approaches are to be utilized to help provide caregivers and community members with essential information on nutrition and health hygiene in order to help develop the skills and self-confidence that they require to make informed decisions on issues that affect their lives and their children’s well-being. Whilst no evidence exists in Azerbaijan on the extent of knowledge of health and hygiene practices, without C4D activities, no significant nutritional and health behavior change can be expected.

2. Purpose of the assignment:
An organization is expected to design, plan and facilitate Behavior Change Communication interventions through engagement and empowerment of individuals, communities and other networks, to carry out, influence or otherwise reinforce nutrition and hygiene practices that create long-term sustainable changes in behaviors associated with better nutrition among women of reproductive age and children.
Activities may include, but not limited to introducing behavior change communication concept in promoting specific behaviors associated with MNCH in general, improved nutrition among women of reproductive age and children through utilization of traditional and non-traditional media, as well as interpersonal communication activities.

3. Supervisor: The selected partner organization will work under supervision of Communication for Development Officer.

4. Major tasks to be accomplished:
- Design, plan, organize and facilitate BCC interventions to promote MNCH, nutrition and hygiene practices among women of reproductive age and young children to ensure that participants’ group are involved, encouraged and contributed to identify key behavioral issues to address at the community and district levels.
- Ensure that BCC interventions are long – term and sustainable and get recognition of the BCC concept at national and local levels. National level will include establishing and strengthening partnership and collaboration with Ministry of Health (Nutrition Focal Point) and Health Reform Center.
- Establish group of women of reproductive age at community and district level to be involved or interested in advocating for improving MNCH status among women and young children.
- Ensure that promotional items focusing on promote MNCH, nutrition and hygiene practices among women of reproductive age and young children developed, pre-tested and distributed to BCC interventions. 

5. Expected results of the project:
- Provide the results of the analysis of the pre and post tests on knowledge, attitude and behavior on MNCH, nutrition and hygiene practices among women of reproductive age and young children in the selected districts of Azerbaijan.
- Provide final report including the results (outcomes of the meetings, viewpoints of children and young people on MNCH, nutrition and hygiene practices, lessons learned and challenges, etc) of the BCC interventions.

6. Time-Frame:  May – July, 2010

7. Selection procedures:
- Working experience in design, planning and facilitation of BCC interventions or public health promotion campaigns at national, district and community levels.
- Strong monitoring and evaluation and reporting writing and documentation capacity.
- Knowledge of working with international organizations, preferably with UN organizations. 

Interested  organization requested to send:
a) Project proposal with detailed description of project, methodology and strategy of the activities, action plan, M&E indicators (qualitative and quantitative) and budget in compliance UNICEF guidelines on Collaboration with NGOs/CSO.
b) reference of previous relevant work (if available);
in a sealed envelop/email to:
United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
24, Neftchilar avenue, Dalga Plaza Business Center,  AZ1095
Baku, Azerbaijan
or send the documents mentioned above electronically  to
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.

Submission Deadline: May 1, 2011. Proposals submitted after the closing date will not be considered.
For further information please contact:
Elnur Aliyev, Communication for Development Officer              




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