National or International Consultancy: Support the ‘Strategic Moment of Reflections’ (SMR) of the UNICEF Lesotho Country Programme 2019-2023

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Application deadline 1 year ago: Monday 5 Jul 2021 at 21:55 UTC

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UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child,


UNICEF Lesotho country programme (CP), which is currently in its third year of implementation, was presented and approved by the Executive Board in 2018. The vision of the country programme 2019-2023 is to reach every child, everywhere, every time, with opportunities to survive, develop and reach her or his full potential. The country programme is informed by and aligns with the Lesotho National Strategic Development Plan II 20190-2023, the Convention of the Rights of the Child, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the UNICEF Strategic Plan 2018-2021, and the UNICEF Eastern and Southern Africa regional priorities. It will contribute to the governance, human capital development and economic growth pillars of the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF).

The country programme prioritizes five mutually reinforcing strategies: (a) addressing data/evidence gaps, including the promotion of real-time data, and using it for effective policy advocacy; (b) using sector platforms to enhance delivery of multisectoral interventions, thereby improving service delivery, particularly for vulnerable and marginalized populations; (c) accelerating coverage of low cost, high-impact interventions, using primary health-care and health-systems strengthening approaches; (d) refocusing on equity and its contribution to the realization of child rights, while maximizing space for innovative strategies in underserved areas; and (e) leveraging resources through innovative financing models for effective, efficient public finance for children to offset potential reductions in funding from traditional sources.

In line with the UNICEF Gender Action Plan 2018-2021, the programme aims to promote community-level interventions to end discriminatory practices and address harmful social norms. UNICEF strengthens its humanitarian action with specific emphasis on risk analysis and preparedness to increase community resilience, disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation. It does so by further integrating humanitarian and development approaches through risk-informed programming that by underpinning shock responsive services and climate-proofing of infrastructure.

UNICEF implements the country programme through three components that collectively aim to secure the well-being and future potential of children by reducing child mortality; supporting maternal care and child health and nutrition; protecting children and adolescents from violence and abuse; reducing poverty and increasing budgetary accountability; and improving learning outcomes, all with a focus on gender and equity.


The planned mid-term review will seek to assess progress and reflect on the country programme outputs/outcomes and activities to understand UNICEF contribution to the UNDAF and the National Strategic Development Plan 2019-2023, including the global development agenda 2030. This review will draw lessons and recommendations that will inform the remainder of the programme period to allow for appropriate adjustments to ensure UNICEF remains on track to achieve results by 2023. In this respect, the office is planning to undertake a facilitated exercise that will look both internally and externally.


The purpose of this assignment is to facilitate and support the Lesotho UNICEF Country Programme Strategic Moment of Reflections (SMR) process. More specifically the consultant will:

  1. Review and consolidate selected evidence from completed studies (including research and evaluations) and other relevant documents available and published during the past two / three years (a list of documents and studies will be provided). This exercise is to provide:
    • a fresh overview of the situation of children in Lesotho
    • summarize existing evidence on the impact of COVID-19 on children, women and adolescent welbeing
    • review and summarize the external Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) / funding landscape
  2. Review key achievements of the country programme in the past two and a half years (based on UNICEF annual Results Assessment Management reports (RAM reports will be provided by UNICEF) and assess relevance and effectiveness of results to planned goals by 2023
  3. Support and document internal and external consultations and programme prioritisation processes, as well as document outcomes on internal strategic reflections
  4. Following the internal and external consultations, revise and adjust the Lesotho CO Strategic documents (Strategic Notes (SN), Country Programme document (CPD), Country Programme Management Plan (CPM)).
  5. Write a final SMR report


The specific objectives of this consultancy are:

  1. To consolidate evidence supporting the strategic review and adjustments of the Lesotho UNICEF Country Programme
  2. To preparation relevant documentations for the Programme Budget Review (PBR) process

The scope of work includes the following:

  1. Consolidation of evidence on the situation of children in Lesotho and on the impact of COVID-19 on children, adolescents and women in Lesotho
  2. Provide an overview of the funding/donor landscape for Lesotho
  3. Analytical review of key results of the Lesotho Country Programme during the past 2.5 years, and assessment of its alignement with key UNICEF/UN strategies and Lesotho national strategic plans
  4. Technical support to internal and external consultative processes and incorporate revisions in relevant strategic documentation
  5. Produce a final SMR report, including a PBR related-document

Approach and methodology:

The methodology should focus on:

  1. Conducting a desk review of existing studies and relevant documents (list will be provided by UNICEF) to document key subjects of interest to the UNICEF CO (see above in Purpose of assignment)
  2. Engaging in internal and external consultations, including through interviews and participatory stakeholder engagements, and document outcomes of the discussions and prioritised actions.
  3. Revising and adjusting key strategic documents (SN, CPD, CPMP) based on internal prioritisation decisions
  4. Writing a concise Mid Term Review report, supporting the Programme Budget Review (PBR) process, including an annotated list and links to all resources used, organized by programme pillar or section.


  • The Consultant will work under the overall supervision and guidance of the Deputy Representative.
  • When additionnal information and clarifications are required from the respective sections, the Research and Evaluation Specialist will facilitate communication between the consultant and concerned sections.
  • Online platforms will be used to share desk review documents, reports and presentations.
  • The consultant will use various communication channels, including but not limited to emails, Microsoft Teams, Zoom, and telephone among others, to ensure timely communication and response to requests.


In alignment with the scope of work as described above, the consultant will be expected to perform the following activities and deliverables as per the schedule and estimated dates below:



Estimated # of days*

Planned Completion date

% of total fee payable

Attend an inception meeting and then produce and present a detailed workplan

Detailed workplan


09 July 21


Consolidation of the evidence on:

  • the current situation of children in Lesotho
  • the impact of COVID-19 on chidlren, adolescents and women wellbeing in Lesotho
  • an overview of the funding / donor landscape for Lesotho

< 20 pages synthesis analytical report

<15 slide power point presentation


31 August 21


Produce an analytical review of key results of the Lesotho Country Programme during the past 2.5 years and assess its level of alignment with key UNICEF strategies and Lesotho national strategic plans

< 25 pages synthesis analytical reportÂ

<15 slide power point presentation


30 September 21


Technical support to internal and external consultative processes and incorporate revisions in relevant strategic documentation

Individual (meeting notes) and summary report from internal /external consultations

Power point presentations to support consultations

Revised Strategic Notes, CPD and CPMP document


30 October 21


Write draft and final SMR report

Satisfactory < 25-page SMR final report that incorporates feedback


30 November 21





*The indicated dates are tentative and may be adjusted during the course of the SMR.


The performance of work will be evaluated based on the following indicators:

  • Completion of tasks and deliverables as specified in this TOR
  • Compliance with the established deadlines for submission of deliverables
  • Quality of work
  • Demonstration of high standards in cooperation and communication with UNICEF and counterparts
  • Variety of relevant information sources collected and synthesized


All payments, without exception, will be made upon certification from the supervisor of the contract, of the satisfactory and quality completion of deliverables and upon receipt of the respective and approved invoice.

Travel is not foreseen. Should travel (international or local) become necessary, costs will be reimbursed on actual expenditures and upon presentation of original supporting documents. As per UNICEF operational guidelines, travel for international consultancies, will be in economy class and will use the most economical route.


Academic qualification:

  • Master Degree in Social Sciences, International Relations, and Development Studies.

    Work experience:

  • At least 5 years experience in at least two of the following areas: strategic analyses and reviews, documentation/ literature review, evaluation, and programme development and management.

  • Previous analytic work on COVID-19 pandemic is an added advantage.

Technical skills and competencies:

  • Strong English language writing skills
  • Strong quantitative and qualitative analysis skills
  • Strong facilitation and communication skills
  • Proven experience in developing strategic planning documents
  • Previous experience of developing strategic documents for the United Nations is an asset
  • Knowledge of social and cultural context in Lesotho is an advantage


  • Proficient in English, written and spoken


UNICEF will regularly communicate with the consultant and provide feedback and guidance and necessary support in order to ensure achievement of objectives of the assignment, as well as remain aware of any upcoming issues related to the performance and quality of work.

As per policy on consultants and individual contractors, the individual will be expected to complete a list of mandatory training, including policies on Prohibiting and Combatting Fraud and Corruption; Prohibition of discrimination, harassment, sexual harassment and abuse of authority, and other relevant policies for their information and acknowledgment. Within 5 days of the contract commencement, the consultant/individual contractor is requested to complete the applicable mandatory trainings.

The assignment will be carried out remotely.

The assignment is open to qualified and experienced national and international consultants with capacity and appropriate technological facilities to work and meet remotely.


The consultancy will be on a long-term arrangement basis over a period of 5.5 months. However, the consultant will only work for 35 days during this contract period.

  • The assignment is an off-site support.
  • The candidate selected will be governed by and subject to UNICEF General Terms and Conditions for individual contracts.
  • No contract may commence unless the contract is signed by both UNICEF and the consultant.
  • The consultant will provide remote desk review services in or outside Lesotho.
  • The consultant will be paid an all-inclusive fee (stationary, communication and other miscellaneous expenses) as per the stipulated deliverable and payment schedule.
  • The consultant is not entitled to payment for overtime, weekends or public holidays, medical insurance, taxes, and any form of leave.
  • Travel expenses (international or local/in country travel) are not foreseen. In case travel will be required, travel cost, including living costs, will be covered by the consultant and, and reimbursed by UNICEF in accordance with UNICEF rules and tariffs against actual invoices and receipts. No travel should take place without an email travel authorization from section prior to the commencement of the journey from the duty station.
  • Standard UNICEF procedures will apply for invoicing and all other financial management requirements set out in the contract.
  • Standard penalty clauses will also apply for late and poor-quality deliverables. The supervisor of the contract will provide the consultant with the criteria for the evaluation of the quality of each deliverable.
  • Additional details of UNICEF rules, regulations and conditions will be attached to the contract.
  • Consultants will not have supervisory responsibilities or authority on UNICEF budget.


Interested candidates are invited to complete an application including profile to the respective advertisement on Please indicate your ability, availability and financial proposal/quote to complete the terms of reference above.

Applications without financial proposal cannot be considered.


Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process. Should you not have been contacted within two months, kindly accept that your application was unsuccessful.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.

Individuals engaged under a consultancy or individual contract will not be considered “staff members” under the Staff Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and UNICEF’s policies and procedures, and will not be entitled to benefits provided therein (such as leave entitlements and medical insurance coverage). Their conditions of service will be governed by their contract and the General Conditions of Contracts for the Services of Consultants and Individual Contractors. Consultants and individual contractors are responsible for determining their tax liabilities and for the payment of any taxes and/or duties, in accordance with local or other applicable laws.

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