CONSULTANCY SERVICE FOR A RESEARCH ON BUILDING RESILIENCE THROUGH THE VSLA IN PROSELL COMMUNITIES OF TARABA STATE
ABOUT OXFAM AND ITS WORK IN NIGERIA
Oxfam is a world-wide development organization that mobilizes the power of people against poverty. In Nigeria, we work to influence policy change in favour of the poor and most vulnerable, promoting food security and supporting small scale farmers to improve the livelihoods of men and women in rural areas. We focus on meeting vulnerable people’s needs, saving lives, sustaining increased incomes for the poorest, transforming attitudes about women’s roles and rights.
We increase active citizenship, and the accountability and transparency of public and private sector; and central to our work is the belief that power relations need to change to enable poor people to demand and claim their rights. Our core values are equality, empowerment, solidarity, inclusiveness, accountability and courage; with the pillars of our national work being accountable governance, gender justice and just economies.
The European Union Support to Food Security and Resilience in Taraba State (DCI/ FOOD/2018/395-810) is a 10 million euros, 54-month EU-funded project to improve food security and livelihoods resilience of smallholder farming households in Taraba State. The project is being implemented by Oxfam and Development Exchange Centre (DEC) in 80 rural communities across six (6) Local Government Areas of the State targeting 40,000 vulnerable rural households. The project’s main objective is to build resilience of small-scale farmers, fishermen and livestock owners in various commodity value chains and rural enterprises. It is intended to empower women and youth by enhancing their abilities to access required services, produce optimally, and earn more income from market activities. The Local Government Areas of implementation are Ardo-Kola, Donga, Kurmi, Takum, Wukari and Zing.
In the past thirty forty five months, PROSELL has been building the resilience of the targeted 40,000 farming households in their agricultural productivity, expanded rural financial inclusion, enhanced market access, and job creation along crops, fish and livestock value chains. Interventions are being delivered to enhance adaptive capacities of small-scale farmers to climate change and promote cooperation and mutual benefits of farmers, livestock owners, and all value chain actors in the selected six (6) Local Government Areas (LGAs) in Taraba State. The project has equally provided immediate succour for the extremely vulnerable rural households through humanitarian assistance aimed at stabilizing them to pursue sustainable livelihoods activities.
In addition to supporting rural households, PROSELL has been empowering the government at the State, LGA, and community levels for an enhanced capacity to develop and implement people-oriented policies and programmes. Inefficiencies in local market systems and systemic challenges promoting conflicts among the people are being addressed as well to deepen resilience and facilitate long term development. Climate-resilient agricultural and non-agricultural livelihoods are being promoted in an inclusive manner that recognizes peculiar needs of women and young people while market actors are engaged to collaborate better in order to make markets work for the poor.
The followings are the specific objectives of the project:
- To increase income of small-scale farmers by enhancing their agricultural productivity, market access, and job creation along crop, fish and livestock value chains.
- To enhance adaptive capacities and resilience of small-scale farming households to climate change.
- To promote cooperation and mutual benefits of farmers, livestock owners, and all value chain actors.
The PROSELL project have facilitated the formation of over 1600 VSLA groups for financial inclusion, social cohesion, enhanced leadership capabilities to empower women among others. Furthermore, the members were trained on a number of needs based IGAs and GAPs; and supported with agricultural inputs and other assets. Although a number researches were conducted on VSL which include rolling baseline, post distribution monitoring, citizens perception among others, none of these studies deliberately set out to measure how VSLA which is one of most important components of the PROSELL project can improve resilience of households using any resilience frameworks. Measuring the resilience of women in VSLA using any standard resilience index will add value to some of the learnings from our adoption of VSL methodology and provide a good evidence for policy advocacy. The findings will be useful to government and Oxfam to decide if the VSL methodology should be replicated in other areas. This research, therefore, seek to answer the following questions:
- What is the impact of investing in economic strengthening interventions at the household level.
- How do VSLAs help households to improve their resilience to shock (covid-19 and other disasters and conflicts).
- Do VSLA improve the resilience of men and women differently?
- What are the factors that could affect the sustainability of VSLA?
Objective of the consultancy
The main objective of this consultancy is to measure how VSLA improve resilience of women in the PROSELL communities in Taraba State. The specific objectives are:
- Measure economic resilience levels of households of VSL members;
- Assess the linkage between VSL and resilience in the midst of shocks brought about by Covid-19 pandemic and other shocks
- Determine how VSL improve the resilience of women compared to men
- Investigate the factors that could determine the sustainability of the VSL program in the state.
Framework and Methodology
Oxfam defines resilience as ‘the ability of women and men to realize their rights and improve their wellbeing despite shocks, stresses and uncertainty’ (Jeans et al., 2016)
Following the works of Martin, Breen and Anderies, 2011, Béné et al., 2012, and others, Oxfam has adopted a framework to conceptualize resilience in terms of three capacities –
The capacities to absorb, adapt and transform (see Jeans et al., 2016). In order to assess the extent of how PROSELL contributed to the building of these capacities, the consultant is expected to adopt/adapt standard indicators of resilience which have been used in relevant literatures.
The consultant is expected to use household data supplemented with secondary data obtainable from Oxfam reports. It is expected that selection of respondents should be done using purposive, stratified and random sampling techniques. Furthermore, the consultant/consulting firm is expected to adopt a mixed methodologies/approach for data collection and analyses.
The outcome of this consultancy should include quantitative and qualitative analysis and synthesis of data collected. The expected deliverables will include:
- Inception report containing a desk research report, sampling plan and sample size, methods of data collection and analyses, field work plan, and sample of survey questionnaire, focus group discussion and key informant interview guides.
- One final research report
- One policy brief
- Power point presentation slides on the findings of the research containing visuals, infographics.
- A minimum of 3 case studies/human stories with good visuals that highlights the key objectives above. This should show what the situation was before Oxfam’s intervention, clearly demonstrate how Oxfam’s intervention has contributed to these transformational changes and the impact it is having on the individual, household and community levels (if applicable). Please refer to Oxfam case study template for guidance.
- High quality photographs
The consultancy is expected to be completed with 25 days from the date of award. The contract is expected to start July 4th and end July 31st, 2022.
Qualification and Experience of Consultant
The lead consultant should:
- Have at least a Master’s Degree in Economics, Development Studies, Resilience, Rural development, or related field.
- Have at least five years’ experience undertaking Impact and research studies in development sectors and have a good understanding of concept of resilience.
- Be conversant with application of cross-cutting themes such as gender mainstreaming.
- Demonstrate an understanding of Oxfam’s approach to resilience.
- Have proven experience of qualitative and quantitative data analysis.
- Have excellent analytical and report writing skills with skills in using statistical packages such as SPSS, STATA, etc. We welcome consultant with skills in using other relevant statistical packages which might be suited to the assignment.
- Have experience working in Nigeria.
- Be fluent in spoken and written English
All documents, project designs, data and information shall be treated as confidential and shall not, without the written approval of Oxfam, be made available to any third party. The utilization of the reports is solely at the decision and discretion of Oxfam while all the documents containing both raw data/materials provided by Oxfam and final report, both soft and hard copies are to be returned to Oxfam upon completion of the assignment. All documentation and reports written because of this assignment or otherwise related to it, shall remain the property of Oxfam. No part of the report shall be reproduced or published except with the prior, expressed, and specific written permission of Oxfam.
How to apply
Interested and qualified consultants/firms are expected to submit their expression of interest (technical and financial proposal) to NGA.Bid@oxfam.org by 26th June 2022 at 5pm.
Proposed methodology should demonstrate:
- Clear understanding of the Terms of Reference.
- CV(s) of consultant(s) (including company profile in the case of firms) who will undertake the study, including full name, physical addresses, telephone number(s).
- Evidence of previous similar assignments successfully undertaken.
- Proposed budget clearly indicating consultant’s fees and all logistical costs in local currency (NGN).
The scope of this consultancy includes all logistical arrangements necessary for the Consultant and her/his team to deliver the outlined works and should therefore reflect in the financial proposal for this consultancy. For the avoidance of doubt, these costs include transportation, accommodation, feeding, and other incidental needs of the team.
This work will be managed by a team composed of the Program Head of Quality and Compliance, PROSELL Project Manager, VSLA Coordinator and relevant PROSELL Staff of DEC in Taraba State.