FIDA Nigeria Invites Application for a Consultant
TERMS OF REFERENCE (TOR) FOR A CONSULTANT TO CONDUCT FORMATIVE RESEARCH TO IDENTIFY PROMISING PRACTICES TO CURB SGBV & CEFM IN NIGERIA
The International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) Nigeria is a non-profit, non-political, voluntary association of women called to the practice of law in Nigeria. Established in 1964, FIDA Nigeria’s primary role is to protect, promote and preserve the rights of women and children in Nigeria.
Its main objectives are to establish friendly international relations on a basis of equality and mutual respect for all peoples; promote the study of comparative law; promote the principles and aims of the United Nations in its legal and social aspects; enhance, promote, protect and preserve the rights and welfare of women and children, realising that the happiness of the home and the strength of the society is dependent on their wellbeing; proffer advice to Government in all cases of disregard relating to women and children. FIDA Nigeria actualises its objectives through free legal representation for indigent women, advocacy and policy campaigns, education and training, mediation and counselling services, publishing and information resources.
FIDA Nigeria was selected as a resource partner for the Strengthening Civil Advocacy and Local Engagement (SCALE) project supported by USAID through the Palladium Group. The SCALE Project presents an opportunity for FIDA to work and scale up its operations particularly in advocating for gender and child-centric protection legislations against Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV); Child, Early and Forced Marriage (CEFM); Trafficking in Persons, as well as building the capacity of community based civil society organisations, and carrying out policy campaigns and sensitization activities across communities on issues affecting women, children and persons with disabilities at the state and federal levels.
In particular, the project will focus on strengthening capacity and working with stakeholders to address social norms that encourage Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) and Child, Early and Forced Marriage (CEFM) in the community; and empowering (through capacity building) community paralegals to respond to incidences of SGBV, CEFM and trafficking in persons (TIP). In the course of implementation, FIDA will engage relevant stakeholders across the target states to secure their buy-in into programme implementation and sustainable outcomes. FIDA will prioritize the identification of local civil society organisations and community based organisations for the purpose of strengthening their capacity to respond to victims/survivors psychosocial, legal aid drive key prevention interventions aimed at curbing SGBV, CEFM, TIP and related abuses that affect vulnerable groups as well as focus on examining and addressing their attitudes toward gender and GBV that may influence their ability or willingness to provide quality and unbiased services to survivors of GBV.
Nigeria ranks 128 out of 153 countries on the Gender Equality Index. The inadequate inclusion of women’s and girls’ perspectives in policy making decisions, resource allocation and implementation in economic and social sectors continues to challenge the advancement of gender equality. Over 70% of women live below the poverty line, with maternal mortality ratios at 576 per 100,000. Of the estimated 3.2 million Nigerians living with HIV, 55% are women. Enrollment of girls in school ranges from one third to one quarter of classroom participants and out of the 10.5 million out-of-school children, two-thirds are girls.
Negative social norms which condone or support violence against women and girls and harmful practices remain pervasive. Gender-based violence is widespread and 30% of women aged 15-49 have reported experiences of sexual abuse, with a marked divide between girls and women in urban (33%) and rural (24%) areas.
Nigeria has the largest number of child brides in Africa and one of the highest prevalence rates in the world: 23 million girls and women were married as children. Currently, 43% of girls are married before age 18, and 17% are married before they turn 15. Once girls in Nigeria are married, very few (1.2% of girls 15-19) use contraception or have their contraception needs met (13.1%). Nigeria accounts for the third highest number of women and girls who have undergone female genital mutilation (FGM), reported at 25% prevalence. Harmful practices occur in a context of limited knowledge and access to sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) information and services, with complications of early childbearing and obstructed labour such as obstetric fistula. An estimated 20,000 new cases of obstetric fistula occur every year.
The Nigerian Government’s response has included efforts to improve its institutional and policy framework, which include the Violence against Person Prohibition (VAPP) Act,
enacted at the national level in 2015, the National Policy on the Elimination of FGM/Cutting, the National Strategy to End Child Marriage, a Road Map and National Priority Actions to End Violence Against Children which have been adopted and are being supported for implementation, the Child Rights Act, as well as several policies and frameworks for a conducive environment for women and girls’ access to quality sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) information and services. As a preventive measure, the Federal Government, through the Federal Ministry of Education in collaboration with civil societies is implementing Family Life HIV Education (FLHE) to empower adolescents and young people develop the skills, knowledge, attitudes, and competences required for making the right life choices to prevent sexual and gender-based violence. Ongoing efforts to increase access to quality accessible and affordable services include the National Health Act, as well as the One Primary Health Care per ward initiative of the Federal Government.
For these initiatives to yield meaning outcomes, it is important to critically approach and understand the social drivers of SGBV, CEFM, and early adolescent pregnancy in the Nigerian context. These social drivers are religion; culture; economic hardship and poverty; war and conflict; limited opportunity for education; inability to access justice; and discriminatory or gender biased laws.
Terms of reference
Addressing the complex and deep-rooted drivers of SGBV and CEFM in Nigeria requires a holistic and integrative approach that is built on evidence of what works not mere assumptions. To this end, the consultant will carry out a formative research that will result in the following outcomes:
• Understanding of the current sector issues and contribute to the design of effective programs curbing SGBV and CEFM
• Identify promising practices to shift cultural and social norms that drive SGBV and CEFM, focusing on how strategies can mobilize vulnerable populations, communities, and government actors to work together to address gender equality and social inclusion (GESI) issues at community, state, and federal levels
The outcomes of the research will be shared with critical stakeholders especially SCALE resource partners and CSOs clusters working on SGBV, CEFM and vulnerable populations to provide necessary evidence for designing effective interventions and advocating for relevant policy reforms.
a. 5 years’ work experience, especially in research, in any of the thematic areas of sexual and gender based violence; gender equality and social inclusion; democracy and governance; women and youth empowerment; and trafficking in persons and human rights.
Advanced degree in any of the following: Law, Political Science, Development Studies, International Relations or any discipline in the Social Sciences.
Qualified candidates should send curriculum vitae and cover letter addressed to the Country Vice-President/National President to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Subject of e-mail should be “Application for Formative Research Consultant”.
Deadline: January 21, 2022.