Save the Children (SC) Nigeria is implementing Reaching and Empowering Adolescents to make informed Choices for their Health (REACH) in Gombe, Katsina and Zamfara states in Northern Nigeria. The three year project specifically targets states with some of the worst indicators for adolescents, especially girls, with a focus on rural and hard to reach communities where rates of early marriage, early childbearing, low educational attainment and discriminatory social and gender norms significantly affect the ability of adolescent girls and boys to make decisions and access services to protect and improve their sexual and reproductive health (SRH). REACH will utilize a socio-ecological model to address deep-seated gender based barriers and improve equitable access of 100,000 married and unmarried adolescents to high quality, gender-responsive and adolescent-friendly sexual and reproductive health services and rights.
REACH will also contribute to Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 3 (ensure universal access to ASRH services, including FP information and education, and integration of RH into national strategies and programmes); and SDG 5 (achieving gender equality and empowering all women and girls), by:
REACH project recognizes that an ecological approach identifies behaviors and norms that are influenced by multiple individual and social factors. This ecological perspective helps to better understand the complex social system that sets norms between children, their families and their communities. This understanding has helped shape our approach, we will depend on the use of three interventions apart from other approaches: Choices, Voices, and Promises(CVP) . CVP is an innovative gender transformative package use to foster individual behavior change as well as broader social norm shifts, improve gender equality among very young adolescents (VYA) 10-14 years old and ultimately improving the lives of very young adolescents in their communities.
Evidence of the need to work across multiple levels of society inspired Save the Children to develop the CVP package to move a community towards social and behavior change with regards to gender equality among adolescents with the following goals: (1) Improve boys’ and girls’ access to information and reflective activities that challenge restrictive gender norms and promote gender equality with the Choices curriculum; (2) Increase dialogue between parents and children that improves equitable treatment in the household with the Voices intervention; and (3) Shift norms within the community to create an environment where boys and girls are valued equally and gender and age-based barriers at the community level can be addressed through the Promises intervention. When working across an ecological model, the effects on gender norm changes among VYA and the expectations, restrictions, and opportunities for boys and girls will be more likely to shift when these three interventions are used simultaneously in a community. Below is a brief on each of the gender transformative package:
Throughout the world, girls and women face discrimination on multiple levels by virtue of their sex. Many girls and women are unable to fully participate in school, family life and economic activities because of this and may be exposed to various forms of physical and psychological violence. On the other hand, boys are socialized that a real man knows he is above a woman, he is strong, macho and doesn’t show emotion. Adolescence is frequently viewed as a “window of opportunity” to formulate positive attitudes and behaviors. Developing gender equitable norms during adolescence reduces the need to invest in the difficult task of changing behavior later in life.
Save the Children developed Voices to challenge harmful norms, beliefs and attitudes held by parents on restrictive gender roles and their gendered expectations of their children, while fostering dialogue between parents and children about gender equality.
Save the Children sought to develop a new innovation to help shift community behaviors that would lead to the greatest impact on gender equality for VYA. The end result was called Promises: a communication approach targeting community members. The approach sees influential community members unveil a set of community billboards each tackling a different but related issue related to gender equality, social norms, gender and age-based barriers to accessing services, and ASRHR.
Purpose of Consultancy
The Adaptation of CVP in each country differs but follows a step-by-step guide and approach. These steps are developed by SCI to ensure that the newly developed CVP approach responds to the needs and context of VYA in their communities/country. Furthermore, the steps ensures that the adapted and developed CVP is utilized properly and will create the changes in attitudes and behaviors identified through a formative assessment in the community. Recognizing the importance and need of an ecological approach SCI Nigeria REACH project decided to adapt CVP to maximize the achievement of its aim and objectives in challenging negative gender norms and improving VYA access to much needed gender responsive SRH, improve decision-making capabilities of girls and shift norms within the society where boys and girls are giving equal opportunities. To achieve this, SCI Nigeria REACH project needs an experience consultant in gender transformative approaches to provide the much-needed support to the REACH team in the adaptation of the CVP, someone that has experience using the tools. Specifically the consultant task will be:
Approach and Methodology
The consultant must possess strong understanding of gender inequalities and determinants in northern Nigeria and specifically how this impact on adolescent boys and girls. A core competence and cognate experience in developing and implementing formative research is an essential skill requirement. The national consultant should be capable of working and facilitating a team of local consultant to achieve the assignment goal.
CVP inception workshop
Outputs, Deliverables and Reporting
During the consultancy, the following is expected:
At the end of the consultancy, the following approved deliverables are expected:
Key Skills and Experience.
Milestone payment in three Tranches