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Call for Proposals: MEAL Consultancy Services for the DEC programmes funded by the 2020 Coronavirus Appeal – Somalia

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  • Post date:28 Mar 2021
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Job Description

Plan International

Call for Proposals

Plan International Somalia is calling for proposals to undertake MEAL Consultancy Services for the DEC programmes funded by the 2020 Coronavirus Appeal, as described in the Terms of Reference below.

About Plan International Somalia

Plan International is an independent development and humanitarian organisation that advances children’s rights and equality for girls. We believe in the power and potential of every child. But this is often suppressed by poverty, violence, exclusion and discrimination. And its girls who are most affected. Working together with children, young people, our supporters and partners, we strive for a just world, tackling the root causes of the challenges facing girls and all vulnerable children. We support children’s rights from birth until they reach adulthood. And we enable children to prepare for – and respond to – crises and adversity. We drive changes in practice and policy at local, national and global levels using our reach, experience and knowledge. We have been building powerful partnerships for children for over 80 years, and are now active in more than 77 countries.

Plan International opened an office in Somalia/Somaliland in 2019 and has started programmes that focuses on child protection, education and youth economic empowerment programming, working with/through partners and providing technical support to INGOs, Somaliland NGOs and the Government of Somaliland in Plan’s areas of expertise.

Terms of Reference


COVID-19 arrived in Somalia at a time when the country was already dealing with two other shocks: the desert locust invasion in mid-2020 and flooding (riverine and flash floods). This has built on a highly vulnerable context, with seven in ten Somalis living in poverty, experiencing widespread gender inequalities and facing multiple recurrent shocks. The 2016–2017 drought resulted in the loss of livestock by 40–60% among pastoralists in northern and central Somalia, exacerbating rural poverty, which is currently at 72%. IDPs are a vulnerable population and this is exacerbated by COVID-19. On a personal level, they are in need of immediate assistance for food security, hygiene promotion and products. On a wider, national level, the country is in desperate need of ventilators, other medical equipment and protective gear such as gloves, face masks and medical gowns.

Furthermore, Somalia has been characterised as being the second worst country in the world to be a girl. The country has one of the lowest child and gender indicators in the world with only one-quarter of girls – 24% aged 15-24 considered as literate, 45% married before 18 years and 98% subjected to female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C). The quarantine measures used by government to prevent and control the spread of COVID-19 exposed children and women to increased protection risks, particularly within the home, owing to increased stress caused by the outbreak, exacerbating existing gender inequalities and violence. Child Protection Areas Of Responsibility in collaboration with UNICEF conducted a CP survey in April 2020 showed more than half of the CP agencies (57%) reported an increase in physical violence particular on girls. There has been increased exposure to violence specially to girls through FGM/C.  

Plan International Somalia received a 9 month-long grant from Disaster Emergency Committee to serve crisis affected communities in Somaliland. This project is implemented in partnership with two national organizations. The intervention was guided by the FSNAU seasonal analysis (Feb 3, 2020) and post-distribution monitoring assessment undertaken by Plan International and its partners in July 2020 which concluded food, water and protection as priority needs in the target IDP camps. The intervention further set out to addressed the negative coping mechanisms that the displaced communities had resorted to due to the inadequacy of the current responses. In addition, a virtual survey on adolescent girls’ experience of COVID-19 revealed that 80% of the girls feel excluded from the humanitarian response and fear they may not be able to go back to school when schools are re-opened due to the increasing loss of livelihoods. 

To address some of the challenges mentioned above, the outcomes of the project were as follows:

  1. Most vulnerable families in IDPs supported to address their basic needs including food, water for drinking and cleaning and hygiene product
  2. The most vulnerable Families in IDPs have water storage
  3. Adolescent girls in IDPs have access to menstrual hygiene product and soap
  4. Increased public awareness on girls’ education and on the risk of violence, exploitation and abuse that have heightened in during the crisis
  5. The affected population have access to information on the response and complaint mechanism


This evaluation is planned to allow Plan International to record the learning around the implementation of its DEC funded emergency programming in response to the COVID-19 crisis in Somaliland and analyse successes, areas for improvement, accountability strategies, and recommendations for future emergencies, particularly around responding to the needs and priorities of adolescents and youth. The objectives and key questions have also included references to the Core Humanitarian Standards to ensure the evaluation considers the extent to which the response is aligning to the 9 commitments. This evaluation is also part of the DEC’s Accountability system. The evaluation will therefore also be shared with the DEC, published on Plan UK’s website, ALNAP and used to demonstrate the impact of Plan International’s and the DEC’s work for this appeal.

Specific objectives of the evaluation:

  1. Analyse the specific activities of the DEC and Members in the context of the DEC-funded programmes and make technical and process suggestions for adjustment.
  2. Identify appropriate windows for support and advise the DEC on programme specific collective learning interventions and facilitate some of these activities.
  3. Review Members’ DEC-funded humanitarian programmes in the context in which they take place, and in real-time.
  4. Recommend areas for improvement in programme delivery

The findings from the evaluation will primarily be used by

The Plan Somalia project team and stakeholders

  • to inform improvements in delivery of the project and support sustainability and transition strategies;
  • to learn and document lessons from the project for replicating good practices and/or taking up approaches and activities with evidence of success
  • to share findings with the affected communities we worked with for the COVID-19 response.

The Plan UK project team

  • to assess and demonstrate accountability for the funding received to communities we work with and the Disasters Emergency Committee;
  • to learn and document lessons for replicating good practices and use findings to inform future responses
  • to generate a body of evidence that supports scale up and sustainability of the activities /benefits delivered by the project;

by Plan Somalia and UK

  • to continuously evaluate alignment to the Core Humanitarian Standards and progress towards Improvement Commitments;
  • to inform continuous improvement on emergency responses and share lessons

the DEC team

  • to share findings, information and impacts of the COVID-19 Appeal to external stakeholders and demonstrate accountability to its supporters 

3.1. Assess the quality of achieved outputs, outcomes and results of the project throughout the period of implementation and its continuous improvement against the key evaluation criteria (relevance, timeliness, efficiency, effectiveness, sustainability, accountability, impact etc. considering how the response is aligning to the Core Humanitarian Standards) including analysing the reasons behind their successful or unsuccessful achievement.

3.2. To assess the effect of the project, including intended and unintended impacts and adaptation to the changing context, on the target communities and their environment; particularly considering the effects on adolescent and young girls and the impact of project strategies in social, economic and environmental terms (CHS commitments 2 and 3)

3.3 Evaluating the extent to which the programme encouraged meaningful participation of the different groups and communities it worked with- making particular reference to the opinions of young girls and young boys – throughout the programme cycle and identifying areas for improvement including in: effectively communicating with communities, encouraging and using feedback, supporting community decision making (CHS commitment 4), and responding to the priorities, needs and culture of the communities and groups the response is working with (CHS commitment 1).

3.4. To identify key good practices and key lessons learnt, including how these have been used throughout the programme to improve its delivery (CHS commitment 6), and make recommendations for future improvement of similar programs based on evaluation findings.

  • Draw out key lessons at the operational level, which can inform real-time adjustments and be used in the design and implementation of DEC Phase 2 Plans;
  • Highlights good practice in the humanitarian operations funded by the DEC; and
  • Identify gaps, areas of unmet needs, and challenges to the humanitarian operations funded by the DEC, from both a sectoral and cross-cutting perspective.
  • When assessing the relevance of programmes, the role of the local partner in designing and implementing relevant and appropriate programmes should be made explicit, as well as the support (or constraints from?) of the International organisation in doing so. What were the comparative advantages and added value of the partners?
  • When assessing the effectiveness and timeliness of the responses, what were the respective roles of the partners and their comparative advantages? Specifically; how did Plan Somalia support the local partners to implement the programme? How did the partnership help to respond to the needs identified? Was the programme overall relevant in responding to the needs? How can local partners be enabling factors for a high-quality programme? What could be improved?

4.1. The evaluation will involve a review of secondary data from the project and an appropriate mixed methodology for primary data collection to ascertain that all the contractual areas are evaluated as well as other relevant literature. The evaluation is expected to follow the OECD-DAC criteria as a framework integrating the Core Humanitarian Standards within it.

4.2. The evaluator(s) will be also responsible for assessing the programme, financial and management issues.

4.3. Evaluators are requested to propose their own methodology and or approach for how they will cover the key questions. It is expected that this will include quantitative and qualitative data collection and participatory methods taking child and youth friendly approaches with a consideration of gender, age and cultural sensitivities.


5.1. The evaluation will look to specifically assess the DEC Funded COVID-19 appeal project. The evaluators will not be expected to draw conclusions on Plan International’s response strategy or approaches. It is expected that assessing the key questions will involve how the project worked within the response such as coordinating with other actors and projects, contributing to overarching objectives, using response-wide beneficiary feedback mechanisms and general Plan systems. 


6.1. The consultant(s) shall determine the appropriate sample size in consultation with Plan. These figures will take into considerations the activities carried out and the project areas.

6.2. The consultant(s) will visit project sites and interview beneficiaries and relevant stakeholders on the relevant project objectives. The sampling criteria and sampling methodology will be clearly described in the final report of the consultant.

6.3. It is important in gathering data to ensure safe and meaningful participation of different groups, including women and young and adolescent girls through gender, age and inclusion friendly approaches 


7.1. The production of the evaluation report will be the liability of the evaluator(s) covering all the evaluation questions, objectives and areas outlined in this ToR. Plan Somalia will be responsible for coordinating the evaluation exercise. During the research process, the evaluator will keep the Evaluation Management Team up to date and agree on changes to the methodology where appropriate.

7.2. The evaluation report shall be produced in English language and should be simple in expression (jargon free).

7.3. The Executive summary should include a brief description of the project, a brief section on methodology but with most text for conclusions and summary of recommendation. The text should be an A4 paper size in Calibri font size 11 and no longer than 35 pages (excluding appendices).

7.4. The evaluator(s) will be liable to submit an electronic version of the evaluation report in PDF Version by the agreed deadline.

7.5. The final product should be fully referenced, with findings clearly linked to evidence.

7.6 The consultant should submit all survey data, transcripts of the FGDs and KIIs, photographs etc 

  • Developing a detailed evaluation work plan and designing an evaluation methodology in consultation with the Plan team for gathering all necessary information and data.
  • Ensuring at all times that gender, age and culturally appropriate formats are followed and all measures are taken to Prevent Sexual Exploitation and Abuse or exposing affected communities and stakeholders to any harm through the completion of the evaluation activities
  • Ensuring all necessary data protection measures are taken and adequate consent is gathered for any interviews, surveys or participation in evaluation activities.

The evaluation will result in the following outputs/deliverables:

  • Inception meeting to discuss and clarify expectations of the evaluation
  • Inception report which will include: detailed proposed work plan and evaluation methodology based on consultations with the Plan team and inception meeting
  • Evaluation tools finalised in consultation with the Plan team
  • Training of any staff or enumerators if required by the methodology
  • Field visits to collect data through the agreed methodology and timeline
  • Validation workshop in country presenting initial findings, key recommendations and lessons to allow discussion and input from the team
  • Draft report with the executive summary addressing all objectives, evaluation questions, clear recommendations and lessons learned, submitted for input and feedback from Plan
  • Final evaluation report including all of the above incorporating feedback from Plan along with all relevant appendices
  • Presentation of the key findings, lessons learnt and recommendations through a dissemination workshop online or in person as feasible

The whole program evaluation process is expected to take 30 working days including: preparation, field work with partners and stakeholders, and report drafting, feedback and finalization. The expected date for commencing work is around the 10th of May 2021 and will follow the agreed work plan and deadlines based on that submitted with the application and discussed between the selected evaluators and the Plan Evaluation Management Team.


Child protection is a term used to describe the responsibilities and activities undertaken to prevent or to stop children being abused or ill-treated. It is Plan’s duty and responsibility to reduce the risks of abuse to the children who we have contact with and keep them safe from harm. Plan’s Child Protection Policy, “Say Yes to keeping children safe”, is Plan’s overriding framework to protect children who come into contact with Plan employees, volunteers, partner organisations and individuals, including consultants, who are working on behalf of Plan.

The consultant should include statements in the proposal on how he or she will ensure ethics and child protection in during the commencement of the assignment and during the field works. Consultant/s should also specify other ethical protocols to be followed during the due course of the evaluation. Consultants are expected to take consent of the respondents or children’s guardian before taking photographs and ask if their photographs, verbatim or case stories could be used in report and for public dissemination. Such consent must be documented and submitted to Plan International Nepal along with the final report.

Confidentiality of all issues discussed either with communities or Plan staff shall be safeguarded by the evaluation consultant/s.


12.1. The consultant shall work under the joint supervision of Plan International Somalia Programme Manager and the designated Plan UK Programme Specialist

12.2. The evaluation management team composed of Plan UK and Plan Somalia staff will play an advisory role in the planning and implementation of the evaluation.

12.3. The consultant/s and the evaluation management team will meet as per the agreed timings, particularly at stages in the evaluation process when deliverables are produced.


The desired specifications and qualities of the consultant(s) are:

  • University degree in political science, sociology, international relations, anthropology, public administration, development studies, gender studies or other relevant fields.
  • A minimum of 4 years’ experience in carrying out impact evaluations, demonstrable relevant academic and practical experience in qualitative and quantitative research methodology, evaluation design and implementation; experience undertaking similar evaluations in Bangladesh would be an advantage.
  • Good understanding of participatory methodologies with proven background in evaluating sudden-onset emergency response and recovery projects with in-depth knowledge of Child Protection, Protection, and Gender Sensitive programming; knowledge of humanitarian response programming in Bangladesh is a plus
  • Strong analytical, facilitation and communication skills, especially with regard to working with young and adolescent girls and boys.
  • Knowledge of child protection procedures when working with children and youths and adolescent girls in particular, as well as experience with implementing child and/or youth friendly evaluation methodologies.
  • Experience of effective interaction with local and national organizations, government departments, and marginalized communities in rural and urban areas.
  • Conversant with gender transformation and analysis, child rights and advocacy.
  • Excellent spoken and written communication skills in English
  • Proven experience of using participatory tools, appropriate for different vulnerable groups including boys and girls especially adolescents, as a means of data collection for project evaluation.
  • Bangladeshi consultants are welcome and encouraged to apply

Applicants are required to submit the following:

  1. Letter confirming that the applicant can carry out the MEAL Services in the timeframe given in the Terms of Reference (ToR);
  2. An Expression of Interest detailing their interpretation of the TOR, proposed methodology including an initial sampling framework and work schedule.
  3. Succinct top-line workplan[1]
  4. Clear budget (in GBP) detailing all proposed costs needed for undertaking the evaluation (travel, accommodation, transportation etc.) including ALL taxes liable to be paid or any exemptions and including the daily fee rates and number of days for each team member.
  5. Completed Experience, Expertise, and Capacity Matrix (using the template in Appendix 1)
  6. Copies of all relevant Curriculum Vitae (CVs). Only CVs for the specific individuals that will form the proposed evaluation team should be included.
  7. Details of three references (with two no older than two years old) for the Bidder entity[2];
  8. Three samples of outputs from previous relevant work delivered (with at least two by the proposed team leader).

DEADLINE: proposals should be submitted no later than 10th April 2021 addressed to Admin, Safia Ahmed Safia.Ahmed@plan-international.org.

Submissions to this call for proposals will be assessed based on the technical quality and the proposed budget. For technical quality, the following will be considered: understanding of the ToR, published requirements, strength of proposed approach and workplan. The overall budget for this work cannot exceed 13,000 USD.

It is expected that this work will be contracted by early May 2021, with interviews taking place week commencing May

N/B: The entire bid should be a MAXIMUM OF seven (7) pages including the budget. Bids not meeting this requirement will not be considered


15.2. The closing date for this post is 10th April2021

15.3. The shortlisted 3-4 candidates may be invited to submit modifications or make a short presentation for the final selection.

15.4. We are committed to ensuring diversity and gender equality within our organization.

15.5. Qualified women are highly encouraged to apply

15.6 Plan International procurement policy and procedures will be followed which may require additional checks or provision of information


Forty percent of the agreed contractual amount, inclusive of all necessary Tax and VAT requirements or retentions, will be paid after signing of the agreement, thirty percent will be paid after submission of preliminary findings in the format outlined in the inception report and remaining thirty percent amount will be paid after submission of final report. 


17.1. All documents and data collected will be treated as confidential and used solely to facilitate analysis. All guidelines under GDPR must be followed.

17.2. Where necessary, the respondents will not be quoted in the reports without their permission.

17.3 All those contracted by Plan must agree to sign and abide by the Global Policy on Safeguarding Children and Young People

[1] The workplan will be revised and further developed as part of the inception phase.

[2] References for team leads will be required later should the proposal move to contracting stage.

Please Note that Plan International Does not charge any fee at any stage of the recruitment process. 

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