RFP – Shock Responsive Social Protection

Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps is an international, non-governmental humanitarian relief and development agency that exists to alleviate suffering, poverty and oppression by helping people to build secure, productive and just communities. Mercy Corps was established in 1979, and has headquarters in the USA and UK. Since 1979, Mercy Corps has worked in over 100 countries. Mercy Corps currently works in 41 countries…

RFP – Shock Responsive Social Protection

1.  Introduction

Mercy Corps Nepal has been implementing the BHAKARI Activity from October 2020 to enhance food and nutrition security, reduce future humanitarian caseload and improve the resilience of communities to recurrent shocks along the Karnali river basin (KRB). BHAKARI is a multiyear emergency program funded by USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Affairs (BHA). The program is implemented in 6 districts (Mugu, Jumla, Kalikot, Surkhet, Achham, and Dailekh, with cluster hubs in Surkhet and Jumla). The sectoral programmatic intervention includes agriculture and market systems, disaster risk reduction, water for productive use, natural resources management, and emergency response to multiple (localized) shocks with a “GESI – first approach” that emphasizes gender and social inclusion which prioritizes reaching to the most vulnerable segment of the society with integrated multi-sectoral approach. The program is currently implemented in 21 Palikas of 6 districts (Annex 1). 

This Scope of Work (Sow) is prepared to solicit a consultant for technical support to implement a small-scale pilot of Shock Responsive Social Protection (SRSP) under the BHAKARI program, reaching an estimated 1,062 vulnerable households. The program has envisaged SRSP as an approach that enables integration of humanitarian assistance in the Social Protection System of Government of Nepal. This enables reaching to the most vulnerable population who may not have been assisted through the social assistance but are vulnerable to the disasters due to different determinants including socio and economic factors and impact from COVID-19 pandemic etc. 

 2.   Assignment Summary 

BHAKARI has envisioned  SRSP as an approach that is relevant to the poorest and most vulnerable population with limited coping capacity living in areas prone to recurrent shocks such as floods, landslide, drought, fire, cold waves and others. BHAKARI scoping on Forecast Based Assistance (FbA) is at the final stage which aims to find suitable channels and pathways that support the use of existing social protection and other support mechanisms and models. The recommendations from the Scoping Exercise would be referred to integrate shock responsiveness into government Social Security Assistance (SSA) program including linkages of Anticipatory Actions with Shock Responsive Social Protection (SRSP) that will enhance readiness among the local authorities and protect lives and assets of the most vulnerable population prior to disaster events. 

BHAKARI is looking for an innovative  approach that will integrate two systems: social protection and humanitarian assistance, through Cash and Voucher Assistance (CVA) programming for inclusive and timely responses. The program is piloting SRSP in 2 Palikas (Surkhet and Kalikot) by piggybacking on the government’s Social Protection System to integrate humanitarian cash assistance. It draws more relevance for the most vulnerable population living with recurrent shocks such as flood, landslide, and fire in the program areas. The program aims to enable local governments to be able to integrate the approach into their disaster response system. 

The consultant will provide technical support to BHAKARI in piloting its Shock Responsive Social Protection (SRSP) interventions, including: (i) technical support for pilot phase in integrating SRSP in humanitarian actions and (ii) strategic support for scaling up integration of effective shock responsive social protection with local governments’ disaster response system. 

The Consultant will work from Kathmandu with field travels to BHAKARI Program locations for interaction with BHAKARI staffs and implementing partners. The consultant will also closely work with local government entities and other stakeholders in DRRM and SRSP.  Mercy Corps will arrange transportation and ammondations for the consultant. The Consultant must be able to complete agreed upon deliverables by 31st March 2022 into two phases: (i) pilot and potential of  (ii) scale-up phase. 

3.   Scope of Work

The Scope of Work consists of two major areas of support: 

(i)  technical support during pilot phase of integrating SRSP in humanitarian response;

(ii) strategic support for scaling-up integration of effective shock responsive social protection with local governments’ disaster response system 

The assignment further anticipates the consultant to work in the following areas: 

  • Stakeholder mapping of all relevant government bodies at the federal, provincial and local tiers that are involved at each stage of the social protection program cycle, that includes all processes between enrollment of an individual into the social protection system and the support disbursement. 
  • Stocktaking  current practices on cash based social protection mechanisms available at local government level to support the most vulnerable exposed to disaster risks; 
  • Undertaking assessments to identify barriers related to access to social protection through consultative processes with government, stakeholders, Mercy Corps and beneficiaries; 
  • Designing tools and guidelines based on document review and consultative process to propose innovative mechanisms and systems for risk financing and shock responsive social protection system; 
  • Developing Shock Responsive Social Protection scaling up strategy and action plan with key findings from piloting guidelines and consultation process;
  • Pro-active engagements with relevant ministries at the federal and province level for consultations; 
  • Actively participating in the appropriate technical working group for SRSP and representing the BHAKARI Activity in coordination forums such as Cash Coordination Group (CCG) and Community of Practice on Forecast based Financing to enable learning and sharing;
  • Supporting staff on enhancing technical knowledge and know how on social protection system and SRSP approach that seeks to improve the preparedness of the social protection system to respond to shocks.  

4.   Deliverables 

  • An inception report unpacking the stakeholder analysis as mentioned in the Scope Of Work including the details plans to achieve the envisaged objective of the assignment      
  • Tools for integrating SRSP in humanitarian assistance with field level assessments and consultations; 
  • SoP/Guidelines for integrating SRSP for Palikas; 
  • Training module(s) on SRSP for local governments and partner NGOs with tools and guidelines; 
  • Facilitation of piloting integration of SRSP in 2 Palikas; 
  • Recommended framework for scaling up SRSP in humanitarian work at other local levels; 
  • A document of key learnings and challenges related to SRSP including for follow up.

5.   Timeline/duration of assignments

Approximately 3 months (spread over 52 working days) as per Mercy Corps working hours and calendar. 

6.   Reports Directly to and Work With 

Reports to Emergency Response Senior Manager and works with Emergency Cash Advisor, Emergency Coordinator.

7.   Knowledge and Experience 

  • At least a Master level degree in social sciences, development studies/management, or any related discipline  
  • Ability to think critically and work collaboratively with Project staff to determine most relevant information, including key project learnings. 
  • Good understanding of local government social protection schemes and disaster response mechanisms
  • Ability to work collaboratively with local partners and local government officials
  • History of working effectively and respectfully with the national government, L/INGOs, contractors and other partners.
  • Previous experience and background knowledge of the Karnali Province context, good understanding of local social exclusion issues and concerns of marginalized population and knowledge of the wider development landscape is highly preferred
  • Demonstrated capacity to work remotely and coordinate effectively with other team members working remotely
  • Very good in written English and Nepali required. Knowledge of the local language is an advantage. 

8.   Per Diem, Accommodation and Transportation 

Per diems, accommodation and transportation will be managed as per Mercy Corps policy and accommodation on actual expenditure basis. 

9.   Accountability to Participants

Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts towards accountability, specifically to our participants and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging participant communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.

10.   Ethics and Integrity

All Mercy Corps staff members, consultants and volunteers are expected to behave ethically and demonstrate the highest integrity in their professional and personal life. Mercy Corps has zero tolerance to any form of fraud, corruption, abuse, harassment, or exploitation. Any breach of our policies or misconduct will lead to disciplinary action or may lead to termination

11.   Required Documents for Submitting the Proposal:

Qualified firms/Individuals can send their application to np-procurement@mercycorps.org  with below relevant document clearly mentioning the tile Shock Responsive Social Protection Consultant by 3rd December 2021.

  1. Financial proposal
  2. Company Profile/ CV
  3. Relevant Past Experience list 
  4. Firm Registration & Renewal certificate (for Firm)
  5. Copy of VAT Registration Certificate (for Firm)
  6. Latest Tax clearance certificate (for Firm)
  7. Copy of Pan card (for Individual consultant)

Note: The assignment is contingent upon donor’s approval.