Call for Consultancy – Feminist Advocacy and Movement Building Strategy

Terms of Reference (TORs)

  1. Introduction

Akina Mama wa Afrika (AMwA) is a feminist Pan-African leadership development organization with headquarters in Kampala, Uganda. Our work is rooted in feminist principles and beliefs guided by the Charter of Feminist Principles for African Feminists which define our leadership development program and movement building activities. We envision a world in which African women are politically, economically and socially autonomous and are champions of change in their lives and society. Our mission is to strengthen the individual and collective leadership of African women, forming strategic partnerships, to tackle patriarchy and attain gender equality and women’s empowerment for a just and secure Africa. Thematic areas of focus include; women in power and decision-making, sexual and reproductive health and rights, women’s economic justice, violence against women.

AMwA provides strategic direction in key Pan-African networks including NGO CSW Africa, Solidarity for African Women’s Rights and the Gender Is My Agenda Campaign. AMwA also has consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council.

  1. Background

The advancement of women’s rights in Africa over the last two and a half decades  which includes laudable gains such as increased enrollment of girls in school; improvement in women’s participation in decision making;  better access to sexual and reproductive health and rights anchored to bodily autonomy and choice, increased assertion of rights in marriages and civil partnerships; the passage of a slew of laws and policies protecting women in the public private; has equally been met with resistance that has led to rollbacks. In the last couple of years, there has been a stalling in almost all the aforementioned areas. Almost all countries on the continent have restrictive access to abortion. And yet, the unmet need for contraceptives in sub-saharan Africa remains the highest in the world, and the region accounts for the highest number of deaths from unsafe abortions. Calls for universal access to comprehensive sexuality education have largely met stiff resistance.

Violence against women is still a mainstay of women’s lives both publically and in private. Femicide across the continent has gone largely unexplained, with demands for accountability met with state sanctioned violence. Although there is much to celebrate in the increased proliferation of women in Africa’s parliaments, the large numbers have not necessarily translated to feminist legislation that has impacted the everyday experiences of women. A lens on the economy shows that women’s productive and reproductive labour is still exploited without commensurate recognition and remuneration. Public services from which women benefit the most have been frustrated by the neoliberal state, sacrificed at the altar of profit and greed. Lastly, a number of contested issues within the women’s movement such as sex work and sexual orientation gender identity and expression are still on the margins, leaving persons with these identities exposed to violence and stigma. Amidst all this, it has become increasingly difficult to organize as civic space shrinks because of oppressive laws on public meetings and funding deficits for women’s rights and feminist work.

The work of the feminist movement on the continent is far from finished. The status quo calls for renewed energies and strategies in lobby and advocacy to counter emerging threats anchored to religious fundamentalism and cultural dogma that promotes conservative values at the expense of women’s freedom.

Policy advocacy and influencing

Policy Influencing is a key strategy inbuilt in AMwA’s core programmatic pillars to ensure that issues affecting women and other gender identities are continuously brought to the attention of key policy makers, government and relevant stakeholders. AMwA fronts issues that are critical to African women in their diversities, and builds women’s leadership capacities to effectively engage in advocacy initiatives. In addition, we mobilise women’s rights organisations and/or institutions to collectively speak and drive the agenda of women’s rights and gender equality at national, regional and international platforms. Working in partnership with various women’s rights organisations, AMwA is positioned to influence and advocate for policy/law reforms and hold governments accountable to their commitments on gender equality and women’s rights.

Movement Building

All our strategic approaches are geared towards strengthening African women’s voices on issues pertinent to themselves and creating a vibrant women’s movement that collectively works to advance the interests of African women in all their diversities. AMwA believes in the spirit of sisterhood and as a result has built strong partnerships with women’s rights organisations, networks and coalitions on the African continent and beyond. Through networking and movement building, AMwA leverages on each organisation’s and/ or institutional strengths and resources to advance the rights and freedoms of African women that we could otherwise not have achieved if we worked in silos thus creating a collective voice.

AMwA actively participates and engages with the African Feminist Forum (AFF) and is the current host of the Uganda Feminist Forum which are both initiatives aimed at building and strengthening the feminist movement and organizing in Africa. These have both been instrumental platforms in encouraging the women’s movement to engage with emerging women’s rights issues such as sex worker rights, LGBTI rights, sexuality and bodily integrity.

  1. Overall objective, methodology and scope of work

Overall objective

The overall objective of this consultancy is to develop a feminist advocacy and movement building strategy to complement AMwA’s strategic plan.

Methodology

  • Review Akina Mama wa Afrika current projects, as well as advocacy initiatives and identify potential priorities and areas of focus;
  • Review the current structure, workload and focus of the advocacy and movement building portfolio and carry out a SWOT analysis;
  • Hold a consultative workshop for management and staff to consult on possible areas for advocacy;
  • Carry out bilateral consultations with current advocacy networks to identify areas for potential collaborations;
  • Finalize the advocacy and movement building strategy incorporating comments arising from AMwA staff
  • Note that much of these consultations will be done remotely via phone, Zoom , Skype and/or email.

Scope of the assignment

The successful consultant will be required to carry out the following activities/tasks:

  • Develop the Advocacy and Movement Building Strategy

Develop a comprehensive advocacy and movement building strategy that includes a situational and contextual analysis, identifies advocacy issues, outlines clear goals and objectives; analyses policy and power, identifies targets and influencers, allies, develop an action plan with deliverables and indicators, and an implementation plan.

  • Present the draft Advocacy Strategy to the validation meeting

Present the draft strategy for feedback from staff, board of directors and other stakeholders

  • Final Advocacy Strategy

Incorporate feedback into final advocacy and movement building strategy

  • Advocacy target groups

The targets of this advocacy strategy include women (cisgender, trans, hetorosexual, Queer), female sex workers, governments at the national and regional level, other women’s rights organizations.

  1. Key Deliverables / Expected Outputs

The following are the expected deliverables during the consultation period:-

i. Inception report

An inception report that outlines the consultant’s understanding of these Terms of Reference including a proposed methodology. The project proposal will have to be discussed with the client and may lead to some modification with regard to the scope and – if necessary – the methodology.

Advocacy and movement building strategy

ii. Action Plan with a list of named individuals alongside their roles/organisations who we believe we need to influence as part of this strategy, and our objective for them specifically.

iii. Resourcing plan: This will include resource requirements for effective implementation of the strategy.

5. Timeframe

The task will take a cumulative 15 days to complete.

  1. Supervision and oversight

The Consultant will work closely with the Executive Director and the Research Advocacy and Movement Building Manager.

  1. Budget

This budget includes the consultant’s day rates plus all incidental costs including but not limited to transport, accommodation, subsistence, stationery as well as related taxes and license fees.

  1. Required skills and experience:
  • Masters degree in relevant discipline or the equivalent experience with at least 10 years’ relevant professional experience in a similar function within international development context – Public Policy, Advocacy and Communications.
  • Demonstrable conceptual clarity on feminist theory and praxis
  • Strong conceptual and research/analytical skills with the ability to quickly analyze data and information from different sources and produce coherent reports
  • Exceptional written and oral communication skills, with strong demonstrated ability to convey complex ideas in a clear, direct, and lively style
  • Strong background in policy analysis and research
  • Ability to work independently, operate under pressure, manage multiple tasks, deliver time sensitive, high-quality work, and meet team objectives
  • Ability to communicate and write competently in English.
  • Highly organized at both the task and project level
  • Knowledge and experience with other international organizations and/or Global Funds
  • Highly creative and innovative thinker
  • Clear articulation of capacity and innovative approaches to carry out the assignment
  1. How to Apply
    Interested applicants should send a cover letter to amwa@akinamamawaafrika.org no later than 12th June, 2020 including the following items;
  1. A brief proposal of no more than 7 pages indicating how they will approach the task as outlined
  2. Budget for delivery of the project as outlined.
  3. A CV of the applicant.

The subject line of the email should state: Consultancy Application – Development of Advocacy and Movement Building Strategy