Consultant - Technical Safeguarding Expert
In mid-2018, a group of INGO Country Directors in Uganda came to the shared realization that the only way to mitigate fraud, corruption and safeguarding cases is through sector wide collaboration, cooperation and exchange of information. However, due to the sensitivity of these cases and the reputational risk involved, there was little joint learning, reflection and sharing of experiences among the NGO community.
A founding group of country directors decided to form the “Internal Risk Management Group (IRMG)”, a safe space for NGO leaders to share, learn and improve their management and mitigation of risk. As of June 2020, the IRMG consists of 56 NGO members, celebrating the diversity of Ugandan and International NGOs operating in the country. The IRMG Steering Committee is made up of nine NGO members who are elected on a yearly basis. The IRMG is currently chaired by Catholic Relief Services, and co-chaired by Plan International. Mercy Corps is the current grant holder for the initiative, and has managed both the DFID and Sida grants related to this project. Other Steering Committee members include DanChurchAid, Care International, International Rescue Committee, Reach out Mbuya, Protos. The IRMG committee is made up of Country Directors of these NGOs, who meet monthly to set the strategic direction for the initiative.
Under phase 1, the Department for International Development of the UK government (DFID), generously funded the IRMG to conduct a benchmark and baseline study of NGO Risk Management and Accountability Practices in the country, as well as to tailor and run training for IRMG member agencies to improve their understanding and ability to respond to internal risk in Uganda.
Purpose / Project Description:
Under phase 2, Sida have allocated funds to continue support to NGOs operating in Uganda to address internal risk management issues such as fraud and corruption, as well as funds to improve how NGOs prevent, mitigate and manage safeguarding issues. The program has three expected outcomes:
- Improve organizational culture concerning dealing with fraud and corruption, through implementing the recommendations from year one assessment of best practices and gaps on fraud and corruption prevention, detection and management.
- Improve the safeguarding practices and reduce the risks of Sexual Harassment Exploitation and Abuse (SHEA) and child abuse in NGO programs.
- Leverage lessons learned and knowledge of the IRMG to benefit the wider civil society sector in Uganda to improve on managing wrongful conduct, including safeguarding practices and the prevention of fraud and corruption.
It is under this initiative that Mercy Corps is looking to engage consultants to support the in-country Project Manager and Safeguarding Advisor to successfully implement project activities.
The consultant will provide necessary technical support to the IRMG; in particular, to the IRMG safeguarding manager, to allow the IRMG to deliver on the agreed deliverables in a timely manner. Under phase 2 of the project, the activities related to strengthening safeguarding practices for NGOs in the IRMG network include:
- A benchmark review is carried out on INGOs’ and NGOs existing safeguarding (focused on SHEA and prevention of child abuse) practices and systems against Global Inter-Agency Safeguarding and SHEA prevention and response guidelines to ascertain the extent to which INGOs are managing cases professionally and ethically (in the context of global trends and best or most promising safeguarding practices). This review will focus on assessing practices within a sample of the IRMG membership group. Using a mixed methodology approach, including establishing a self-audit tool to enable IRMG members to assess their own practices and identify areas for improvement, the review will establish a baseline of current practices from where areas for improvements can be identified and subsequently addressed.
- The Global Inter-Agency Safeguarding and SHEA prevention and response guidelines should be contextualised for Uganda
- A review of the UN Inter-Agency Prevention of SEA Action Plan UNHCR’s Refugee Feedback, Referral and Resolution Mechanism (FRRM) will be carried out to assess whether these initiatives are delivering on their intentions and complementing each other.
- Training on safeguarding is adapted to the needs of NGOs in Uganda
- 100 INGO staff members and 100 LNGO staff members are trained on safeguarding
- A community of practice is established for safeguarding in NGOs and is used to share learning
- Advocacy carried out to improve safeguarding and internal risk management practices in Uganda
The Consultant will:
1. Work closely with IRMG safeguarding advisor; review safeguarding activities in workplan, supporting safeguarding advisor to keep workplan and strategy under review and updated; attend, as necessary, update meetings with the IRMG Steering Committee. (5 working days)
a. Workplan for Safeguarding Activities reviewed and approved by IRMG SC at program start - 4th September 2020 (submitted to IRMG SC)
b. Updated safeguarding workplan in Q3 reviewed and approved by IRMG SC - 15th January 2021 (submitted to IRMG SC)
c. Updates for IRMG SC on progress and direction of the program - bi-monthly presence and briefing notes for IRMG SC - End August 2020, end October 2020, mid December 2020, end Feb 2021, end April 2021, end June 2021
2. Design the tools and methodology to conduct a benchmark study on INGOs’ and NGOs’ existing safeguarding practices and systems (focused on SHEA and prevention of child abuse);
Design self-audit tool to enable IRMG members to assess their own safeguarding practices and identify areas for improvement;
Work with the safeguarding advisor to collect the raw data and take the lead in analysing the data and writing the final report. (25 working days)
a. Established self-audit tool for IRMG members to assess their own safeguarding practices - 15 September 2020
b. “Study on Safeguarding Practices and Systems amongst INGOs and NGOs”, including Foreword - 15 November 2020
3. Based on the findings of “Study on Safeguarding Practices and Systems amongst INGOs”, identify training needs of IRMG members, validate, prepare tender package, and provide technical support during bid review process. (3 working days)
a. Finalise ToR for training provider and finalised tender package; scoring of bids and technical recommendation for provider - Tender package and ToR by 15 December 2020; scoring & recommendation 7 working days after bid opening
b. 100 INGO and 100 LNGO staff members are trained on safeguarding
4. Contextualise the Global Inter-Agency Safeguarding and SHEA prevention and response guidelines for Uganda. (3 working days)
a. “Guidelines on Safeguarding and SHEA prevention for INGOs and NGOs in Uganda” - 15 November 2020
5. Review UN Inter-Agency Prevention of SEA Action Plan and UNHCR’s Refugee Feedback, Referral and Resolution Mechanism to assess whether they are delivering their intentions and complementing each other. (2 working days)
a. Brief report to the SC on the effectiveness of the UN Inter-Agency Prevention of SEA Action Plan and UNHCR’s Refugee Feedback, Referral and Resolution Mechanism - 15 November 2020
6. Support the safeguarding advisor to develop advocacy messages, review the advocacy plan and provide briefing notes for any advocacy event planned. (2 working days)
a. IRMG advocacy messages disseminated to relevant stakeholders - As arranged with IRMG members and project manager
Total estimated days: 40 days
Timeframe / Schedule:
August 2020 – 31 August 2021
The Consultant will report to:
IRMG Safeguarding advisor Mercy Corps Uganda
The Consultant will work closely with:
IRMG program manager, MCU Deputy Country Director, Africa and Ethics Team, Members of Internal Risk Management Steering Committee.
Required Experience & Skills:
- At least 10 years of experience working on risk management and safeguarding programs, with particular experience in the area of sexual harassment, exploitation, and abuse and child abuse.
- University degree
- Evidence of safeguarding research and publications.
- Understanding context of Uganda