National Consultant - Baseline Study for Project on Care and Protection for Vulnerable Children in Sierra Leone


Background and Purpose of the Assignment

The three-year project in ‘Care and Protection for Vulnerable Children in Sierra Leone’ will focus on strengthening the child protection, alternative care and education systems to care for vulnerable children in Sierra Leone, including street children and those affected by Ebola. At the national level, the project will strengthen the capacity of government and civil society for the application of the national Case Management system, which will ensure registration, assessment, needs-based referral for services, and follow up for vulnerable children.

This project will enable the provision of alternative care for children without parental care, including street children and Ebola-affected children who have not been, or are unable to be, reintegrated into families and communities, as well as family tracing and reunification. Many children are placed unnecessarily and for too long in institutions, where they receive less of the stimulation and individual attention needed to grow to their full potential. Inadequate care environments can impair children’s emotional and social development and leave them vulnerable to exploitation, sexual abuse and physical violence, thus the need for family-based care environments, including foster care. In addition, psychosocial support, and education support to enable enrolment and attendance in school will be provided, which builds upon on-going initiatives that target out-of-school children and ensures that they are supported to be in school. 

At the community level, this project will strengthen social change for the protection of children without parental care, including street children and those affected by Ebola. The project will strengthen traditional child rearing practices - especially the care of children within the extended family system (especially for Ebola orphans) and strengthen community mechanisms for the identification and referral of children to the formal Case Management system as and when necessary.


The Child Protection Section, UNICEF Sierra Leone, is seeking an individual national consultant to provide support to the country office to establish and present a baseline to measure and evaluate the impact of a three-year project on ‘Care and Protection for Vulnerable Children in Sierra Leone’. The project will commence in April 2018 and will seek to ensure that 3,000 children will benefit from a child protection system that is responsive, child-friendly, and prioritizes their right to care and protection. It will achieve this through activities which focus on building the knowledge and capacity of frontline staff on case management and alternative care; through the practice of Case Management; the provision of alternative care and essential services to vulnerable children; and through strengthening the capacity of schools to ensure access for the most vulnerable children.

Purpose and Objectives

Under the overall supervision of the Child Protection Specialist, the Consultant will be required to collect and compile baseline data on the four key interventions of the project, so that the project may be monitored throughout its three-year duration, and evaluated against the baseline at its completion in 2020. The key activities for the project, which the Consultant will need to collect baseline data for, are as follows:

a.       Case management for at least 3,000 vulnerable children, including street children and Ebola-affected children

b.       Alternative Care and Service Provision for children and their families

c.        Training of 700 frontline staff working with vulnerable children, including those without parental care, such as street children, and children affected by Ebola

d.       Strengthen capacity of schools to ensure access for the most vulnerable children

Methodology and Technical Approach

The consultant will need to review and assess the available evidence and expertise generated within UNICEF, the Ministry of Social Welfare, the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, and NGO partners in order to come up with baseline data, as well as develop indicators and a reporting format for monitoring the implementation, and guiding the final evaluation, of the project.

Activities, Tasks, Outputs and Deliverables

    1. Develop and finalize the list of indicators and establish a format for the collection and management of the baseline;
    2. Compile the baseline data for all activity areas with all available/important disaggregation. The consultant will use available data from existing databases (including PRIMERO), NGO and government reports, as well as other available sources identified in coordination with UNICEF;
    3. Contact government counterparts and NGO partners to validate existing data and identify potential source for missing data and/or identify ongoing/future efforts to collect data;
    4. Identify remaining data gaps, review feasibility of additional data collection. The consultant will also identify key challenges related to the available data as well as future monitoring of progress and suggest possible solutions to fill data gaps and address other key challenges;
    5. Draft a baseline PPT presentation and report with data visualization (coordinate infographics);
    6. Draft a reporting format for UNICEF, government counterparts, and NGO partners’ annexes to compile data related to the project;
    7. Provide written recommendations for future monitoring and reporting on progress against the activity indicators.

      The following outputs shall be expected of the consultant. All outputs shall be reviewed internally and by external partners for quality before they are accepted for processing of payments.

  1. Final list of key indicators for each of the 4 activity areas
  2. Excel database with all baseline indicator data available by activity area
  3. PPT presentation of the baseline to be presented to UNICEF and interested parties
  4. Word Report analyzing data available, identifying key challenges with the baseline including data gaps, and recommendations to address these challenges and for future monitoring and reporting on the activity areas


Application deadline is 1 April 2018.