Consultancy for carrying out an assessment on MHPSS & Peacebuilding under the Women, Peace and Security framework in South Sudan

HealthNet Transcultural Psychosocial Organisation (HealthNet TPO/HNTPO) is a Dutch-based international organisation founded in 1992 working in areas affected by conflict and disaster. HNTPO has been implementing public health and Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) interventions in South Sudan since 1995. HNTPO is an active member of the national MHPSS Technical Working Group and the IASC Reference Group on MHPSS in Emergency Settings at global level, including the IASC MHPSS & Peacebuilding and Advocacy Sub-Working Groups.

About the project

Leaders of Peace (LoP) is a five-year programme (2021-25) implemented in South Sudan under the grant instrument Women, Peace and Security (WPS) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Netherlands. The project focuses on creating an enabling environment where women and girls feel protected and are able to realise their rights, increase their participation and contribute to peacebuilding processes. The LoP alliance is composed of five organisations: Plan International (as the lead), PAX, Eve, AMA (Assistance Mission for Africa) and HNTPO, who carry out interventions in five regions in South Sudan, namely Eastern, Western and Central Equatoria, Unity, and Lakes.

As a member of the alliance, HNTPO seeks to improve the mental health and psychosocial wellbeing of women, girls and their communities across targeted locations of the programme. This is done by building the capacity of local agents of change and community-based groups in the areas of MHPSS and GBV prevention, including through community mobilisation and resource mapping, activating referrals, awareness-raising and case management services. These agents of change engage with communities to identify MHPSS needs, priorities and define advocacy initiatives in favour of women and girls. The programme currently supports 50 communities, community volunteers (also known as Psychosocial Focal Points - PFPs), community leaders and influencers across selected 20 Payams in 7 counties of five States in South Sudan.

Assessment locations

State County # of Payams # Communities
Eastern Equatoria Torit 1 5
Magwi 2 11
Western Equatoria Yambio 1 5
Central Equatoria Terekeka 5 14
Juba 3 5
Lakes Yirol East 2 3
Unity Panyijar 2 4
Nyal 2 3

About the LoP learning agenda

During the inception of the programme, the LoP alliance and its stakeholders jointly developed a learning agenda with the objective to strengthen collaboration and to fill knowledge gaps to adapt their work and support advocacy activities. One of the learning priorities of the LoP alliance is to examine the link between MHPSS and peacebuilding initiatives. By consolidating and generating new evidence on these topics, the alliance will aim to strengthen support mechanisms and services that promote mental health and wellbeing of women, girls, and their communities and to promote an environment whereby women can feel safe to realise their rights and be able to access dignified services. The following learning questions have been formulated at the inception of the programme:

  • What is the influence of community-based psychosocial support in strengthening and empowering CBOs/CSOs to address issues related to MHPSS and GBV in their local communities?
  • What is the influence of these groups on influencing the national and local agenda on MHPSS and GBV through lobbying and advocacy in favour of women and girls?

As MHPSS technical lead, HNTPO will seek to answer these questions in collaboration with the LoP alliance and engage in a learning exercise to guide programme implementation, knowledge exchange, and advocacy-related activities. Additionally, HNTPO aims to engage in a cross-country learning process with WPS partners in Colombia where it is carrying out a similar programme.

Aim and objectives of the consultancy

HNTPO wishes to engage an external consultant to support in carrying out an assessment aimed to contribute to the LoP learning agenda on MHPSS and peacebuilding and the learning questions highlighted above. An assessment guideline, including data collection tools, have been drafted by HNTPO and reviewed by LoP partners. The overall objectives of the assessment are:

  • To assess existing knowledge, attitudes, practices and meanings around MHPSS, GBV and peacebuilding constructed by women, men, youth and their networks in selected locations of the programme;
  • To analyse MHPSS needs, to map existing (formal and informal) MHPSS services, referral mechanisms and to identify gaps in knowledge and available services to address needs, with a focus on survivors of gender-based violence and people with mental health problems
  • To identify and document capacities, resources, challenges and lessons learned of different actors to address MHPSS needs – including documenting coping mechanisms and self-care strategies, community-based practices, and advocacy activities.

2.1. Scope and use of assessment

The evidence collected will assist HNTPO and LoP partners to improve the programme, coordination and to build a joint action plan to guide advocacy actions based on existing needs and resources. The findings will seek to equip communities with tools and evidence to better address the gaps identified, mobilise existing resources and support their activities. Based on the findings of the assessment, the alliance will jointly determine how the findings will be disseminated through the development of knowledge products aimed at different target audiences. Findings will be shared with relevant local, national and international stakeholders, including affected populations. Under the lead of HNTPO, the evidence will feed cross-country learning with WPS partners in Colombia, enabling sharing of experiences and the amplification of voices from the South, especially those of women and youth as key actors for peacebuilding, thereby contributing to the global agenda on MHPSS and peacebuilding.

Role of HNTPO and consortium partners

The technical and operational team of HNTPO in South Sudan and in Amsterdam office will provide coordination, management and support to the consultant. Upon initial consultation with HNTPO, the consultant is expected to effectively engage with LoP partners during various phases of the assessment to ensure active buy-in and support. HNTPO will:

  • Provide guidance and support to consultant about project locations and contact persons
  • Assist the consultant with identifying and accessing stakeholders
  • Provide relevant project documents
  • Methodology and activities

The consultant will engage in the following activities:

4.1. Review assessment guideline and data collection tools

The consultant will review the existing guideline and data collection tools developed by HNTPO in line with relevant standards and priorities. Data collection methods will include a desk review, FGDs, KIIs and a survey. The consultant is expected to actively engage with HNTPO team at national and global levels to ensure alignment with organisational and programmatic priorities.

4.2. Identification and management of LoP assessment team

The consultant will identify and manage the LoP assessment team. A clear data management and analysis plan, including the definition of roles and responsibilities of the assessment team, should be developed that will explain how collected data will be handled and analysed to reach conclusions.

4.3. Training of data collectors

The consultant will support the selection of data collectors and other relevant staff from the targeted locations of the LoP programme based on quality criteria. A two-day training will be conducted in line with ethical standards, including testing and piloting of data collection instruments.

4.4. Data analysis

Appropriate data analysis packages and tools to be used should be explained. Datasets to be produced should be clearly managed and presented as part of deliverables.

4.5. Consolidation and presentation of final report

The preliminary findings will be shared with key stakeholders and refined based on consultative discussions. The final report will be consolidated along with a summary report with key findings, recommendations for further action and key advocacy messages.


The following deliverables are expected:

  • Reviewed assessment guideline and data collection tools
  • Draft final report
  • Final report
  • Summary report
  • PowerPoint presentation to key stakeholders
  • A cleaned data set and transcriptions (electronic)
  • All other materials used

5.1. Tentative format of final report (approximately 30 pages, excluding annexes)

  • Cover page
  • Table of contents
  • Acronyms
  • Executive summary
  • Key definitions
  • Section 1: Introduction (general context, introduction of project and partners)
  • Section 2: Objectives of assessment
  • Section 3: Methodology (data collection methods and process, sampling, adaptation of instruments, number of participants per location (gender-disaggregated), timeframe, limitations)
  • Section 4: Background and context analysis per location (demographic aspects, description of population, national and state policies, gender and conflict analysis, GBV and MHPSS diagnosis)
  • Section 5: Assessment results per location (MHPSS needs and stressors, perceptions, knowledge and capacities, mental health needs, self-care and community-based practices, link with peacebuilding and gender, help-seeking and coping strategies, available resources and services (formal/informal, including within health facilities), advocacy activities etc.) To complement the text, add tables and graphs, for example: demographics of respondents, perceptions of problems by different groups, quotes etc.
  • Section 6: Conclusion and Recommendations (related to: needs, resources, capacities of individuals and communities, key advocacy activities to be conducted, specific issues to be addressed, stakeholders to be involved, (human) resources needed)
  • Annexes (details of tools developed, list of contact persons and/or organizations consulted, bibliography references, raw data (both quantitative and qualitative), statistical analyses (codes and formulas used))
  • Timeframe

The consultancy will begin on the 19th of June after signing the contractual agreement. The final report is due in September 2023. The following timeline could be tentatively followed:

What When
Kick-off meeting(s) with HNTPO and LoP partners 19 – 23 June
Desk review 19 June – 14 July
Training of assessment team (including tool piloting) 10 – 14 July
Data collection 17 – 31 July
Data analysis 31 July – 31 August
First draft of final report 31 August
Validation process and presentation of findings 31 August – 15 September
Final report submission and summary report 15 September

Ethical standards and safeguarding

HNTPO and the LoP alliance are committed to ensuring that the rights of those involved in data collection or analysis are respected and protected, in accordance with ethical research principles. Among others, the assessment will follow internationally-recognised principles outlined in the IASC Guidelines on Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergency Settings (2007), the IASC Reference Group on Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Assessment Guide (2012) and the IASC Recommendations for Conducting Ethical Mental Health and Psychosocial Research in Emergency Settings (2014). The consultant should provide sufficient details in their proposal to clarify how they will guarantee the ethics and protection of participants in the data collection process. In particular, the consultant should explain how the adequate, safe and non-discriminatory participation of all stakeholders will be ensured and how special attention will be paid to the needs of vulnerable groups. The consultant should also explain how they will ensure the confidentiality and anonymity of the participants.

Profile of the candidate

The consultant should demonstrate clear competencies in one or more professional backgrounds in the area of conducting qualitative projects and assessments that focus on MHPSS, public health, gender equality, peacebuilding and protection. More specifically the consultant is expected to have:

  • Master’s degree in above mentioned or related fields of expertise.
  • Sufficient knowledge and understanding of MHPSS, gender and protection in South Sudan.
  • Experienced in qualitative and quantitative statistical analysis packages such as NVivo, ATLAS.ti, SPSS, STATA, or other similar software.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and capacity to work with people at all levels.
  • Committed to work and meet the deadline as agreed by project management.
  • Excellent English communication and writing skills. Proven experience in producing written research reports.
  • Good knowledge of LoP programme locations. Fluency of local languages desirable.
  • Proposal criteria

A proposal detailing the technical and financial aspects of the assessment (with consultant’s understanding of the assignment, a clear outline of the proposed methodology and workplan, consultant(s)’ up to date CVs, detailed cost) should be submitted. All proposals must include the following details:

  • Proposed methodology and justification
  • How the consultant will ensure quality at all steps of the process
  • How analysis of each type of data will be completed
  • Implementation plan
  • Demonstration of how the consultant (and potential team) meet the qualification and experience required, as detailed above

The technical proposal will be evaluated based on the Quality Cost-Based Selection (QCBS) criteria:

  • The individual general reliability as well as experience and capacity in the carrying out the assignment (30%).
  • The approach in responding to the ToR and detailed work plan (45%).
  • The qualifications and competencies of the proposed personnel for the assignment (25%).

Proposals obtaining more than 70% of the technical points will be considered technically suitable and qualify for a financial assessment.

Proposal submission

Consultant(s) who meet the above requirements should submit the following:

A narrative/technical proposal which should include a very clear understanding and interpretation of the ToR, including a thorough methodology and detailed schedule;

*The technical proposal content should not exceed 8 pages (Verdana font 9 should be used) and financial proposal should not exceed 2 pages;

A financial proposal indicating fees for the consultancy to complete the task (excel format with itemised budget lines)

Updated CVs/Profiles that clearly show the qualification and experience of the consultant and potential team;

Contacts of three organizations recently worked with-clearly similar/related work.

Registration and tax clearance certificates (for Consulting firms)

Please strictly adhere to the ToRs requirements and application procedure, otherwise your proposals (technical and financial) will not be considered.

The total budget of this assessment is between 8,000 and 10,000 Euro, including all taxes and costs.

The submission date line is 14th June 2023. Proposals shall be evaluated on a rolling bases. Selected applicants will be interviewed in the week of 12th – 16th of June - with representation of HNTPO’s Program Manager in South Sudan, MEAL Manager in South Sudan and MEAL Coordinator in the Netherlands. Interested consultancy firms should send applications to: [email protected], copying [email protected] by 14th June 2023 copying [email protected] and [email protected] . Hard copy applications may be dropped off in our Juba Office at SADECO building opposite UNMISS airport road.

For further information or sending your application please contact Mrs. Tamara van der Putten at [email protected].

Request for Proposal to conduct a Learning Agenda assessment for Leaders of Peace project -2023.pdf (2.7 MB)