Consultant – Abt Associates Inc.

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Consultant – Abt Associates Inc.

In Nepal, CRS has been conducting social marketing activities since 1978.  Over the years, CRS has grown its staff, its budget and its product line to include three male condoms, two oral contraceptives, one injectable contraceptive, one emergency contraceptive pill, an ORS product, and a water treatment product.  Its products are sold throughout the country and it makes a substantial contribution to the national contraceptive prevalence.   Currently, its primary source of funding is from USAID through the GharGharMaaSwasthya (GGMS), or Healthy Homes, project which works in 49 districts in the hill and mountain areas to improve the access to and use of health products by underserved and vulnerable populations.  

In 2016, USAID Nepal requested the SHOPS Plus project to provide technical assistance to CRS.   Sustaining Health Outcomes through the Private Sector (SHOPS) Plus is USAID’s flagship initiative in private sector health. The project seeks to harness the full potential of the private sector and catalyze public-private engagement to improve health outcomes in family planning, HIV/AIDS, maternal and child health, and other health areas. SHOPS Plus supports the achievement of US government priorities, including ending preventable child and maternal deaths, an AIDS-free generation, and FP2020. The project improves the equity and quality of the total health system, accelerating progress toward universal health coverage.

In Nepal, SHOPS Plus is a five-year (March 2016 – September 2020), $5 million program to support the goals of USAID and the Government of Nepal of increasing the use of and access to family planning and other health products in Nepal. The SHOPS Plus Nepal program works to build the technical capacity and financial sustainability of the Nepal CRS Company, a social marketing organization and key USAID partner.   SHOPS Plus has put a particular emphasis on using data and evidence to inform more effective marketing and behavior change strategies.

A subcomponent of the GGMS program is the “Rural Access Initiative” (RAI) which involves CRS’ efforts to work more intensively in remote districts using community outreach approaches to increase consumers’ knowledge of key health products and their awareness of the health risks associated with these products.  The primary vehicle for the RAI strategy is a network of Community Change Agents (CCA’s) who work in one Village Development Committee (VDC) area at a time.  These CCA’s are essentially volunteers, but they receive a small stipend for each training session they conduct.  These agents are trained by CRS and receive a kit of visual aids to help them conduct outreach sessions on a variety of topics.  By adopting a more intensive approach in the RAI districts, CRS expects to achieve measurable changes in knowledge, positive attitudes and health-seeking behavior. 

The objectives of the RAI program as follows:

  • Improve family planning knowledge, attitude and practice among Married Women of Reproductive Age Group (15-49) in hard to reach geographical areas; 
  • Create demand for FP/MCH products and services through BCC programs;
  • Increase accessibility and availability of contraceptives through social marketing 
  • Increase modern methods of contraception use among marginalized and vulnerable groups. 
  • Increase Institutional Delivery 
  • Increase ANC attendance 
  • Increase awareness about Uterine Prolapse and service seeking behavior;
  • Increase in CPR among all women

Under GGMS, the RAI program began in selected three districts Jumla, Bardiya and Bajhang from 2014. An assessment of the program was conducted by SHOPS Plus in May- June 2017 which suggested that RAI program has increased awareness of different health issues, focusing on FP and RH in these 3 districts.   However, the assessment also showed that the approach of RAI relied too heavily on didactic approaches emphasizing health information and not enough use of adult learning techniques or community engagement strategies to build sustainable behavior change.   The assessment made a number of recommendations for improving the RAI activities.  In 2017, CRS is planning to implement a new RAI campaign in four new districts integrating the recommendations of this assessment.   The districts were selected based on the health needs in the communities, particularly where the contraceptive prevalence rate was well below the national average.

The final selected districts within 4 supervision area were:

  1. Biratnagar Area Office- Terhathum
  2. Bagmati Area Office- Ramechhap
  3. Pokhara Area OfficeTanahun
  4. Narayanghat Area Office- Arghakhanchi

CRS will work in selected municipalities (Palinkas) in these districts hiring one District Coordinator and one Social Mobilizer for each district.   In addition, the project staff will recruit volunteers from the communities to serve as Community Change Agents (CCA’s).   The CCA’s will be trained in social and behavior change techniques and will receive a small stipend for activities that they lead.

In preparation for the new RAI campaign, SHOPS Plus conducted a two-day workshop on social and behavior change approaches with exercises applied to planning the new RAI campaign including selecting target audiences and segments, identifying behavior change strategies, catalyzing community level communication, choosing appropriate messages and channels of communication.  The participants included all managers involved in supervising the RAI campaign.   Elements of this workshop need to be adapted for follow-on training with the District Coordinators, Social Mobilizers and CCAs.

Scope of Work for the consultant

For the new RAI activities, the SBC consultant will perform the following tasks:

  • Work with the CRS Training Manager to design and implement a training workshop for the new RAI staff (District Coordinators and Social Mobilizers) that will be hired by CRS.   This training will adapt the content of the recent SBC training targeted at senior managers so that the DCs and SMs will be able to apply the same approaches in planning district activities.  In addition, the workshop will be used so that the RAI staff complete more detailed strategic plans that specific a target audience and segment for each health area, key strategies for the Opportunity, Ability and Motivation framework and key messages and channels to be used during the campaign.  The output of the workshop should be detailed plans for the campaign in each district that the RAI staff understand and can implement.  This workshop will take place in Kathmandu and will be conducted entirely in Nepali.
  • Work with the CRS Training manager and the RAI staff (DC’s and SM’s) to design and implement a training workshop targeted at the CCA’s in each district.  During this workshop, the plan for the campaign will be presented and discussed with the CCAs, the CCAs will be trained in adult learning techniques and participatory facilitation methods and they will receive training in the health areas of the projects.  The workshop should be planned to maximize practical exercises and role plays to allow CCA’s to practice the methods.   This workshop will be conducted four times (once in each of the districts) entirely in Nepali.
  • In collaboration with the CRS and SHOPS Plus staff, the consultant will review the current RAI Training Manual, suggest revisions and ensure that the Training Manual is focused ondeveloping the skills and knowledge of the RAI staff and CCAs to carry out BCC activities in the target districts.  It will cover the following areas: 
  1. Adult learning principles and participatory methods for behavior change and community mobilization.  This section should provide practical guidance different techniques for ensuring participation in community groups using real life situations, case studies, games, and ideas for community eventsadapted for the Nepali context.
  2. Specific guidance on how to facilitate sessions on each health area using the standard RAI flip charts and posters.
  3. Sample forms and instructions on what data CCAs are expected to collect and report to the District Coordinators and Social Mobilizers.
  4. A different section for each of the health areas that are to be covered during the RAI campaign (family planning, handwashing, water treatment, treatment of diarrhea with ORS zinc, uterine prolapse, maternal and newborn health, etc,.  In addition to technical information on the health area, each section should provide some key messages for people with the health risk or need.
  • Review and provide technical suggestions for updating existing RAI SBC materials including new materials to be developed on cyclebeads, ORS and zinc.

Contract Duration -The SBC consultant’s contract will span the period of April 1, 2018 – July, 2018. LOE – approximately 75 days. 

Deliverable Schedule

Dates Deliverables
TBD Report with analysis and recommendations for revisions of the Training Manual of CCAs
TBD Report with analysis and recommendations for revisions of the RAI SBC materials
TBD Detailed training plan for the Kathmandu training of RAI staff  (DC’s and SM’s)
TBD Detailed training plan for the district level training of the CCA’s
TBD Co-facilitation of both training events
TBD Training report of both training activities.

 

Read also:  RFP - M&E services for WASH sector, SNV Nepal 

Desired Qualifications of the Consultant:

The SBC Consultant should have the following qualifications:

  • Advanced degree (masters) in public health or communications
  • Minimum of six years’ experience in implementing behavior change activities at the community level, preferably for achieving public health objectives
  • Highly proficient in spoken and written English
  • Native or fluent in Nepali
  • Two to three years’ experience in training of adults in Nepal. 

Application Instructions:

All interested applicants should apply with their CV and cover letter to [email protected] by April 1, 2018.

ORIGINAL SOURCE OF INFO: JOBSNEPAL.COM

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Sagun's Blog is a Public Health Information sharing platform created by Sagun Paudel. The main purpose of this blog is to share public health updates.

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