Request for Proposal (RFP) – Conduct Design, Pre-Testing and Validation of Handbook at the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) invites interested and eligible consultancy firms to express interest by submitting RFP documents for the following works:

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), is a United Nations agency responsible for providing humanitarian and developmental aid to children worldwide. The agency is among the most widespread and recognizable social welfare organizations in the world, with a presence in 192 countries and territories.

Applications are invited for:

Title: Request for Proposal (RFP) – Conduct Design, Pre-testing and Validation of the Maiden Mother and Child Health Handbook for National Dissemination

Reference No:
 RFP 9173929

Reducing maternal, infant and child mortality is a major health target of sustainable development goals and to contribute to this target, Nigeria has introduced high impact and critical lifesaving interventions, delivered during antenatal, delivery, postnatal care and other child related activities, however, is yet to reach optimal targets. Healthsystem gaps remain, especially when providing a care continuum.

Research has proven that continuum of care (CoC) is key to improved maternal, new-born and child health (MNCH). However, a number of women and new-borns are missed out from the MNCH services due to a myriad of factors, but mainly the challenge of poor care seeking behaviour, inequity and poor access to health services, and data management gaps. Nigeria recognises the need to track Maternal and Child Health indicators. To accelerate universal health coverage (UHC) in MNCH, Nigeria has adopted two types of approaches in the Maternal, Infant and Young Child Nutrition Policy: (i) empowering the mothers and new-borns to seek essential care; and (ii) strengthening the health system. Furthermore, it is one of the recommendations of the National Strategic Plan of Action for Nutrition (NSPAN) 2020-2025 developed by the country with two important goals. First, to reduce morbidity and mortality among children under five years to one digit in the next five years and secondly, to reduce perinatal and maternal morbidity and mortality rate and thirdly more efficient use of government and donor investments.

To ensure this and other critical goals are sustained, MNCH need to be implemented and tracked, by the Health Information System and on the side of users. Nigeria’s maiden Maternal and Child Health Handbook (MCH-HB) offers a promise for users. The MCH HB will standardize data reporting and health records for use across the country for every pregnant mother, during delivery and early childhood period.

Purpose of Assignment
For of the newly developed MCH HB, plan, design, pre-test and conduct a validation exercise, in preparation for national dissemination for NPHCDA and stakeholders. For maternal and early childhood nutrition and health services:

  • Assess end user (pregnant women, lactating mothers, and other primary caregivers) interpretation, data applicability and usability as a health records tool and behaviour change communication material
  • Assess service delivery personnel (including health workers at ANC and child health clinics, community workers and volunteers) usability as a health record tool and behaviour change communication material, interpretation of facility records, and 3-way referral.
  • Following the life cycle, qualify service level information flow
  • Recommend strategies to roll-out the MCH HB across Nigeria

Scope of Work / Assignments
The scope of work for design, pre-testing and validation of the MCH HB are:

  • Designing, layout and illustrations: Using pictorials and created in local languages for reaching and engaging end users.
  • Pre-testing across 6 geopolitical zones: The pretesting of the MCH HB should be done with participation from the end users (caretakers/community members), service providers (health workers/other PHC staff), programme managers and technical experts (representatives from program units within MOH, PHCDA), and creative designers. To provide a critical assessment of the MCH HB agreed-upon criteria to highlight strengths and limitations. To identify knowledge gaps.
  • Validation among stakeholders: conduct validation workshops with stakeholders
  • Develop an implementation plan for national roll out

To pre-test and validate the MCH HB, this consultancy seeks to achieve the following:

  • To leave no one behind: “No one left behind” is one of the philosophical foundations of the SDGs. The MCH HB aims to include the most vulnerable.
  • To ensure a continuum of MCH care: MCH HB should strengthen a continuum of care within the fields of maternal, infant, and child health.
  • Promoting a harmonized care within many health fields: The MCH HB should be all in one. Information
  • from many sectors, such as MCH, immunization, nutrition, family planning, education WASH etc., are integrated into 1 book.
  • To offer a flexible tool that can be adapted to each state/geo-political needs and culture. The MCH HB should be flexible and user friendly. Must contain colour pages and illustrations, figures, and photos when needed, or to reduce the number of pages due to financial constraints.
  • To empower women: MCH HB should empower women by delivering their own health information into their hands. They can also strengthen communication between health professionals and mothers. The MCH HB should be used as a personal keepsake; it contains a record of the childrearing efforts carried out by mothers and fathers.
  • To apply ICT to MCH HB: The digital MCH HB should be user-friendly for low educated people and visual defect. It is expected to integrate the information of MCH HB and the digital MCH HB services by utilizing ICT

Qualifications or Specialized Knowledge / Experience Required

  • An experienced research institution with highly qualified researchers with extensive experience in social and behaviour research on nutrition, WASH and health. Past related work in nutrition and gender is an asset as well as previous experience working with UNICEF.
  • Have extensive experience in applying innovative qualitative methods including but not limited to positive inquiries, participatory observation, positive deviance, human centred design and other participatory methods.
  • Have reliable local partner to implement the field work
  • Have highly qualified investigators and analysts with rich qualitative research experience with experience working in Nigeria and in-depth knowledge of Nigeria’s nutrition, health, and WASH context as well as understanding of Nigeria’s social, political, and cultural context.
  • A multi-disciplinary team with expertise across the range of disciplines (nutrition, health, behavioural science, anthropology). The team leader should have at least 10 years and other key staff should have a minimum of 5 years of professional work experience in designing and implementing assessments.
  • Willingness to comply with UNICEF Harmonised Approach to Cash Transfer (HACT) approaches such as micro-assessments, spot-checks including at end-user level.

Application Closing Date
21st April, 2022.

Submission of Documents

All proposals should be submitted via email to: [email protected] with the RFP number used as email subject title. kindly note that the technical proposal should be separated from the financial proposal.

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