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Aflateen+ Impact Evaluation Consultant – Tajikistan

Tracking Code 217917-927

Job Description

TITLE: The Aflateen+ Impact Evaluation Consultant

WORKSITE LOCATION: Khujand/Dushanbe, Tajikistan

START DATE: March 1, 2012

LENGTH OF ASSIGNMENT: 48 Days (2 trips at 3 weeks each plus 12 days for analysis and write up)

 Position Type  Full-Time/Regular

RATIONALE

The proposed Aflateen+ Impact Evaluation will rigorously evaluate, to academic standards, the planned Aflateen+ activity under Mercy Corps’ USAID-funded Maternal and Child Health (MCH) Program. Aflateen+ is a cooperative endeavor between Mercy Corps Tajikistan and the Netherlands-based non-governmental organization, Aflatoun, which builds off our current successful implementation of the Aflatoun child financial literacy and social empowerment program within the Child-to-Child education component of MCH. Aflatoun has developed a new curriculum targeting adolescents (11-19 years) with a similar focus on financial literacy and social empowerment. Mercy Corps plans to expand the Aflateen (hence Aflateen+) curriculum to include an extended focus on reproductive health and family planning, delivering the training exclusively to adolescent girls aged 15-19 through both formal (secondary schools) and non-formal education channels (community health educators, community/youth centers). The theory for change behind Aflateen+ is that program will unlock the potential of adolescent girls for greater control over their own bodies, will increase their productive and entrepreneurial abilities, improve their negotiation skills, enhance their confidence, and enable greater opportunities for leadership at home and in their communities. While MCH intends to monitor and evaluate the Aflateen+ activity, a rigorous impact evaluation, using varying control groups, is not possible without additional funding, such as that potentially provided via the Adolescent Girls Opportunity Fund.

OBJECTIVE

The overall purpose of this consultancy is to work with the Tajikistan country team and Aflateen+/MCH staff to design an impact evaluation that will be carried out over the life of the Aflateen+ activities.  The goal of the Aflateen+ Impact Evaluation is to provide substantial, quantitative and qualitative evidence of tangible benefits and behavior change to adolescent girls participating in the Aflateen+ project that correspond to the theory of change detailed above.

The support from the consultant will be delivered in a way that is consistent with and reinforces the priorities and good practices articulated by the MC DM&E team and guidance materials. In particular, the evaluation consultant should work to build the capacity of the local staff, and produce high quality evaluation products (reports) for dissemination to internal and external audiences.

RESPONSIBILITIES

  1. To develop a rigorous evaluation design and methodology, including research questions, quantitative and qualitative research instruments, combining Aflatoun’s own evaluation criteria with additional inputs for the reproductive health and family planning curriculum.
  2. Develop sampling and control methodology including decisions regarding the types of control sub-groups to include (e.g. Aflateen ONLY, Aflateen+ ONLY, Reproductive Health & Family Planning Curriculum ONLY, No Intervention).
  3. Provide technical assistance to the team to complete baseline survey of all intervention groups within the MCH program, prior to activity commencement.
  4. Provide technical assistance to the team to complete second survey following completion of invention(s).
  5. Design monitoring and follow-up surveys.
  6. Clean datasets and conduct thorough data analyses.
  7. Write baseline and final impact evaluation reports.

CONSULTANCY TASKS:

The main consultancy tasks for the  Aflateen+ Impact Evaluation consultant would include:

  1. Finalization of research questions to be addressed by the evaluation;
  2. Development of quantitative and qualitative research tools;
  3. Finalization of sampling methodology and control groups;
  4. Sampling;
  5. Training of enumerators;
  6. Baseline surveys of Aflateen+ and control populations;
  7.  Post-intervention surveys of Aflateen+ and control populations;
  8. Write the baseline and final impact evaluation reports;
  9. Dissemination of findings.

DELIVERABLES  

  1. Impact evaluation design document, including evaluation questions, sampling strategies, data collection methods, and measures.
  2. Data collection instruments and corresponding data entry templates
  3. Baseline Study Report, along with cleaned datasets
  4.  Final Impact Evaluation report, along with cleaned datasets

SUPERVISOR & CONTACT INFORMATION:

The evaluation consultant will report directly to the Health Program Manager for Mercy Corps Tajikistan, but will work closely with:the Local Team Leader for Impact Evaluation; DRRI Project Manager and Aflateen+ Project Management Team; and the Senior Technical Advisor for Research and Evaluation.

MERCY CORPS RESPONSIBILITIES

Mercy Corps will provide the evaluation consultant with appropriate orientation, materials, and logistical support. In addition to the fee described above, for this assignment Mercy Corps will cover the following:

All expenses associated with the two field visits to Tajikistan will be covered by Aflateen+ Impact Evaluation budget.

Expenses include:

  • Daily per diem to be paid via Mercy Corps HQ in Portland, OR upon receipt of approved travel expense reports.
  • Flights
  • Accommodation
  • Visa costs
  • Local travel
  •  ISOS evacuation coverage

CONSULTANT RESPONSBILITIES

Consultant will remain responsible for all costs associated with:

  • Expenses not listed above, including a laptop computer additional equipment, and other requirements necessary to undertake the responsibilities of the position
  • International Health insurance

QUALIFICATIONS

  • Holds MA or PhD in program evaluation or other relevant social science
  • Five to seven years experience designing and evaluating maternal and child health or similar projects
  • Demonstrated skills in impact evaluation design and quantitative and qualitative analysis
  • Excellent written/verbal communication skills, including in report writing
  • Strong commitment and experience in building evaluation capacity building
  • Self-motivated and able to work without close supervision
  • Excellent organization and planning skills; detail oriented
  • Team player, able to operate collaboratively within a dynamic team
  • Flexibility to adapt to changing conditions and requirements
  • Commitment to remaining engaged in the evaluation for the life of the project

WORKING CONDITIONS

Dushanbe is the Capital of Tajikistan and Khujand is the second largest city of Tajikistan. Khujand  is situated in the north of the country and close to Uzbekistan border. Housing and hotels are comfortable and there are several restaurants in both the towns.  There are one hour flights from Dushanbe to Khujand operated by Tajik Air and Somon air. The land route through the beautiful passes of Anzob and Shahristan is also accessible in summers.

Mercy Corps consultants represent the agency both during and outside of work hours when deployed in a field posting or on a visit/TDY to a field posting and are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and MC’s policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.

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