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Consultancy Title: Development of resources for Social and Behavior Change programming in MENA, focusing on Social Norms and Parenting

The goal of the consultancy is to support the development of a set of resources and tools to support Country Offices in improving their programming on positive parenting, with a focus on influencing social factors and in particular social norms, and applicability to interventions related to Early Childhood development, Violence Against Children, and Psychosocial Support.

If you are a committed, creative professional and are passionate about making a lasting difference for children, the world's leading children's rights organization would like to hear from you.

For 70 years, UNICEF has been working on the ground in 190 countries and territories to promote children's survival, protection and development. The world's largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.



Duration: 90 working days

Location: UNICEF MENARO, Amman, Jordan

On-site working days:  75 days

Off-site working days: 15 days, countries in the region

Field Missions/Travel: Yes

Estimated Start Date:  20 August, 2017

Estimated End Date:  31 December, 2017


The Consultant will work closely with the Child Protection regional team and the C4D Headquarters team.





The need to influence and shift social norms is now recognized as one of the key pillars to the realization of women and children’s rights in the Middle East, in particular in areas such as violence prevention, better parenting, family roles, relationships and decision making. In the majority of cases, some forms of social norms (whether moral, gender-related, religious, cultural or purely social) are flagged by the existing research as the principal underlying drivers of practices related to child rearing and protection. And more generally, all scientific evidence available in the field of Social and Behavior Change underlines the impossibility to influence behaviors for positive parenting by only addressing cognitive factors (knowledge and awareness) and limiting interventions to the individual level. Accordingly, the most recent global frameworks, such as the INSPIRE package promoting evidence-based strategies to reduce violence against children, or the Early Childhood Development programme guidance to improve young children’s development, define the promotion of norms and values that support non-violent, nurturing, positive and gender equitable relationships for children as a key strategy for success.


Nevertheless, until recently, social conditions in general and norms in particular have represented an area of under-investment in UNICEF programming, including because of their theoretical complexity, the fact that they require sophisticated holistic field approaches, and because of the difficulty to attain and measure tangible results in the course of traditional planning and funding cycles. Social norms are usually mentioned in the theories of change, but rarely dissected during formative research to inform programming, and often poorly included in monitoring and evaluation.

The need to improve UNICEF’s in social norms programming in MENA was once again recognized collectively during the Child Protection Regional Network Meeting organized in Amman in 2017.


This necessity is also reflected by desk researches. In 2015, the Programme Division at UNICEF Headquarters in New York published a research study to analyze the effectiveness of communication for development (C4D) approaches to address violence against children. The data underlined critical programming gaps to address, in particular on the social factors side.


MENARO conducted in May 2017 a survey covering 14 Country Offices operating on VAC, Harmful Traditional Practices (Child Marriage and FGM/c) and Child Protection in Emergencies. Participants (Child Protection and C4D staff jointly) were asked to select the interventions they deemed to be the most important for achieving results in these areas. The results of the survey placed Addressing Social Norms and Values as the top priority intervention across the region, and ranked other social and behavior change-related interventions high, including the provision of support to parents and caregivers.




The goal of the consultancy is to support the development of a set of resources and tools to support Country Offices in improving their programming on positive parenting, with a focus on influencing social factors and in particular social norms, and applicability to interventions related to Early Childhood development, Violence Against Children, and Psychosocial Support. 




The objectives of the consultancy are:

  1. Contribute to the development of a simplified M&E framework for Social Norms Change
  2. Develop regional guidance on Social Norms programming
  3. Ensure the alignment of the upcoming regional social norms training (developed jointly with ESARO, planned for Q4) with the above-mentioned resources
  4. Develop a rationale on the need and value of Social Norms programming
  5. Contribute to the development of parenting job aids for social workforce in the region
  6. Contribute to the development of ‘’parenting for life’’ resource





The consultant should apply the most appropriate technique/ methodology approach that will focus on the objectives highlighted above. These could include but are not limited to the use of desk review, key informant interviews, focus group discussions (in particular during pre-testing exercises), and consultative meetings/ trainings. The consultant will be requested to submit a technical proposal with brief description of methodology, milestones and timeframe as part of her/his application.




Key Task



  1. Simplified M&E framework for Social Norms


MENARO will seek to build upon two resources under development at the moment:

  • a macro level M&E Framework on social norms developed by NYHQ in partnership with Drexel University, commissioned by the global UNICEF/UNFPA joint programme on FGM/C
  • a pilot study conducted by the Columbia Group for Children in Adversity in close collaboration with UNICEF WCARO and Senegal CO, designed to measure the outcomes generated by CP system strengthening work at decentralized level on both prevalence of Child Protection issues and acceptance of related social norms

Through combining these two existing tools in light of other publications on the topic (DFID’s guidance notes on M&E for programming on Violence Against Women and Girls, Care’s methodology to measure Social Norms for Gender Programming, the How to diagnose and measure social norms developed by Cristina Bicchieri, and reports and M&E for social norms from Gerry Mackie and Francesca Moneti, among others), the consultant will seek to develop an agile M&E Framework, up to theoretical standards but pragmatic and realistic, tailored to the regional context, and ready for implementation by Country Offices.

This work will be coordinated with the Child Protection section’s efforts to adapt and pilot the Columbia Pilot Study to the region.

Simplified M&E Framework aligned with the associated piloting tool

End September, 2017

  1. Guidance on Social Norms programming


One of the needs most frequently expressed by Country Offices is the provision of clear guidance on what to do, programmatically and very concretely, to tackle social norms. The literature is quite abundant on the matter, but authors’ reluctance to provide recipes and oversimplify the concepts, which is perfectly legitimate, creates a lack of accessible tools for non–experts who want to take first steps into programming for Social Norms, or simply explore the feasibility to do so. The existing literature also needs to be reconnected to the reality of what it means to work in a UNICEF Country Office, and the concrete steps to develop the Social Norms interventions for VAC or ECD programmes when supporting Governments, with the existing limitations. The development of a set of simplified and accessible resources (e.g. visual pathway of change, step-by-step summary of standard Social Norm programming, check-lists, options according to resources, etc.) would pursue the objective to allow staff members and their partners to rapidly get an understanding of the concepts and assess their options for action in a few minutes. Before, possibly at a later stage when basic decisions have been made, coming back to the existing more detailed guidance. 

Set of tools developed, and ready for editing by a service provider.  

End October 2017

  1. Rationale on the need and value of SN programming


The consultant will develop a rationale putting forward arguments that justify focusing on and investing in social norms programming to advance results for children, to be used by UNICEF offices to engage with government stakeholders and donors and develop written proposals, addressing the regular misunderstandings and reservations shown by partners on the topic (Country Offices will be consulted on specific examples). A short and a longer versions are envisioned. 

Standard rationale in English, French and Arabic (translations facilitated by MENARO)

End December, 2017

  1. Coherence between SN training and other resources developed


ESARO and MENARO are working jointly on adapting the Manual on Social Norms and Change developed under the FGM/C joint programme into a training focusing on programming for social norms related to violence against women and children, and its measurement. A company will be hired for this purpose and two trainings conducted with duration of 4-5 days for staff and partners (1 in the region, in Beirut or Cairo). 

It will be critical for the consultant to ensure the alignment of the content of this joint training with the M&E Framework and programming guidance developed for the region.

Alignment of content is ensured

Training date in Q4

  1. Positive parenting job aids


Drawing upon the global parenting standards, as well as the multiple existing partners’ resources,  in collaboration with C4D HQ, the consultant will translate the standards into concrete ‘’job aids’’, starting with Egypt as a pilot, and a couple of other countries (TBD) for further testing and adaptation. The main audience will be Frontline workers involved in parenting activities. These tools will be adapted to the local context (sub-regional if possible, country-specific if not), translated, pre-tested, and later edited in a modern format. They will include a specific section on ECD in Emergencies / PSS.

Pre-tested job aids available in Arabic and French (translations facilitated by MENARO) and ready for editing by a service provider.  

End November 2017

  1. Parenting for Life


A ‘’Parenting for Life’’ guide, based on the model of Facts for life, will be developed in collaboration with C4D HQ, to help put parenting knowledge into the hands of those who need it most: parents and caregivers first, but also social workers, journalists and teachers. The knowledge and science will be converted into easy-to-understand rationale for parents to engage in new rearing practices, on each component of the domains of parenting. Pre-testing will be conducted in selected countries. These would also serve as basis for developing messages during future communication campaigns.

Parenting for Life guide ready

End December 2017 (shared accountability with MENARO  and HQ staff)



TRAVEL CONSIDERATIONS (PLEASE CHECK IF APPLICABLE): Commencement travel (consultant’s cost)


For individual contractors and consultants, all travel arrangements to commence the assignment, including insurance and visas, will be managed and paid by the individual.  Therefore, expected travel costs must be included as a budget item in the financial proposal. 

When “mission travel” will be required, UNICEF will manage and pay for travel via Travel Authorization.  However, this will be subject to the following prerequisites:  Medical Clearance, Security Clearance through the Travel Request Information Process (TRIP) system, the Basic and Advanced Security in the Field Trainings, Travel Visa, and liability waiver. Trip prerequisites will be met at the expense of the consultant.


Travel cost shall be calculated based on economy class travel, regardless of the length of travel.  Costs for accommodation, meals and incidentals shall not exceed applicable daily subsistence allowance (DSA) rates, as promulgated by the International Civil Service Commission (ICSC at  The consultant must travel on UNICEF approved airlines.


The foreseen mission schedule (TBC) is the following:


Pre-testing of tools



3 days

Pre-testing of tools



3 days

Pre-testing of tools



2 days

SN training attendance



7 days





1.      Education: Master degree or its equivalent in communication or social science field is required.

2.      Work experience: A minimum of 8 years of professional experience in Social and Behavior Change.

3.      Technical knowledge:

Knowledge of the individual and social factors related to Child Protection issues and Parenting, preferably but no necessarily in the region.

Proven skills in social and behavior change programming, communication, networking, and tools development.

Proven ability to conceptualize, plan and execute ideas as well as ensure knowledge transfer.

Strong writing skills.

4.      Language: Oral and written proficiency in English is required, Arabic (and French to a lower extent) is considered an asset.




The MENA regional Office will cover costs through its programming budget. 




Select proposed methodology: By Deliverable


Overtime, weekend and official holidays will not be compensated, nor will any holiday/leave time be granted. The payment will be linked to the tasks and deliverables.



Payment schedule linked to deliverables

  1. Simplified M&E framework for Social Norms Change

40% of total payment to be disbursed upon submission of deliverables 1 and 2.

  1. Regional guidance on Social Norms programming
  1. Alignment of the regional social norms training

30% of total payment to be disbursed upon submission of deliverables 3 and 4.

  1. Parenting job aids
  1. Rationale for Social Norms programming

30% of total payment to be disbursed upon submission of deliverables 5 and 6.

  1. ‘’Parenting for life’’






Qualified candidates are requested to submit:

  1. Cover letter/application.
  2. Proposed methodology/approach to managing the project and deliver according to timeframe.
  3. Financial quote: lump sum for professional fees (linked to daily rate) + lump sum for travel/administrative + lump sum for subsistence.
  4. CV.
  5. Examples of previous, relevant work as applicable
  6. At least 2 Referees
  7. P 11 form (which can be downloaded from our website at


Late submissions, incomplete packets, or submissions with an incorrect email subject heading will not be considered.


Please indicate your ability, availability and daily/monthly rate (in US$) to undertake the terms of reference above (including travel and daily subsistence allowance, if applicable).  Applications submitted without a daily/monthly rate will not be considered.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages qualified female and male candidates from all national, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of our organisation.


Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

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  • Organization: UNICEF - United Nations Children’s Fund
  • Location:
  • Grade: International Consultant - Internationally recruited Contractors Agreement - Consultancy
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Information Technology and Computer Science
    • Social Affairs
    • Information Technology and Computer Science
  • Closing Date: 2017-08-03

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