National Consultant for Development of RHR Strategy
Purpose of consultancy:
To develop adolescents & youth reproductive health and rights (RHR) strategy for the effective integration of RHR into the National Youth Development Framework supporting the Prime Minister’s National Youth Development Programme - Kamyab Jawan.
Pakistan is the fifth youngest and sixth most populated country in the world, having 64% young people of an estimated 200m population. This large cohort of youth is seen as the beacon of prosperity capturing the demographic dividend in Pakistan. However, the prevailing high level fertility rate and the age structure are not leading the country to benefit from the demographic window of opportunity. The unmet need for family planning among married women is high at 17 percent and the contraceptive prevalence rate among married people aged 15-19 is only 7.4 percent. High fertility and poor maternal health are indicative of weak health system infrastructure and a challenging situation on the ground; in terms of poor availability of and access to high quality and affordable sexual and reproductive health (RH) and family planning (FP) services.
According to the 2017-18 Pakistan Demographic and Health Survey (PDHS), 8 percent of women aged 25-49 were married by the age of 15 and 29 percent by 18. Poor reproductive health of adolescents and youth is associated with adverse consequences of early childbearing and parenthood, including neglect and abuse, pregnancy complications, maternal death and disability. Teen mothers are more likely to live in poverty. Harmful practices that result from unequal gender norms can further impede access to reproductive health services and limit women’s rights and choices in all areas of their lives.
Ensuring that adolescents have access to the health services they need can help prevent such lifelong impacts, and also contribute in checking the intergenerational transmission of poverty, for example, by reducing rates of adolescent pregnancy. Recent policies have acknowledged a need to enhance young people’s access to information and services related to reproductive health. In particular, the need to discourage early marriages and childbearing is recognized, along with making family planning services accessible to young married couples so they can avoid the high risks of pregnancy in adolescence. With the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2016, the global community, including Pakistan, has recognized universal health coverage as a critical priority. Within this context, the need to ensure health coverage for adolescents is especially emphasized. In order to enable young people to make right choices for themselves and their families, it is important to make the health services responsive to the needs of adolescents and youth, in an integrated manner. Services must be responsive, respectful, confidential and affordable.
Keeping with this momentum, UNFPA has partnered with the Prime Minister’s Kamyab Jawan Program in supporting the National Youth Development Framework to increase investment opportunities for young people’s RHR nationwide and to promote their participation in the design of federal and provincial policies and programmes. The National Youth Development Framework identifies the areas for youth development with regard to civic engagement, mainstreaming marginalized youth and youth focused institutional reforms. Whereas the National Youth Council has over-see the accountability of the programme.
In this regard, development of an adolescents and youth RHR strategy is envisioned to guide interventions under the national framework and to provide policy guidance, while supporting young people to make right choices for their own health and their families. The adolescents and youth RHR strategy is to be developed following a consultative process with the Ministry of Health and other key stakeholders.
Duration and working schedule:
Consultation is for the tenure of the period of 5 months – following standard working hours with 5 days a week working schedule.
Place where services are to be delivered:
Consultant is to be based at the Prime Minister’s Office – Kamyab Jawan Programme, Youth Affairs Wing – Islamabad and will comply with their working modality.
Delivery dates and how work will be delivered (e.g. electronic, hard copy etc.):
The key tasks of the consultant will include:
1. Desk Review: conduct an analysis of the laws, policies and regulations in place with reference to RHR for youth and adolescents, health policies, global commitments, national frameworks etc. in Pakistan.
2. Partnership mapping and coordination: identify key government and non-government counterparts/ stakeholders in influencing the development and implementation of the strategy at the national and provincial level.
3. Strategy development: develop an overall RHR strategy for adolescents and youth, including an implementation plan based on the policy analysis, consultations, and mapping focusing on key priority areas.
4. Consultation and validation: present and seek inputs on the draft strategy and implementation plan with internal and external stakeholders. Moderate the sessions and the validation workshop.
5. Finalization of the strategy.
During the course of the assignment, the consultant will work under the direct supervision of the Programme Analyst – Youth SRHR, while working in coordination with the Deputy Secretary – Kamyab Jawan Programme. Perform other tasks as may be assigned by the Deputy Representative and Representative – UNFPA.
Required expertise, qualifications and competencies, including language requirements
Knowledge and Experience:
· Advanced degree in public health, policy development and/ or reproductive health.
· At least 5 years of experience in the field of reproductive health, medical sciences is mandatory
· Previous experience of at least 3 years in developing strategies, policy analysis and research is preferred.
· Strong knowledge of contemporary development issues nationally and globally especially on youth reproductive health and rights, integrated health services, community engagement, participation in civic issues, livelihoods and employment, and national and global planning frameworks
· Strong knowledge of SDGs and Pakistan’s commitments to the goals.
· Excellent networks/linkages with government and civil society partners
· Advocacy/Advancing a policy oriented agenda
· Results-based programme development and management
· Innovation and adopting new approaches
· Values: Integrity/Commitment to mandate, Knowledge sharing/Continuous learning, Valuing diversity
· Managing Relationships: Working in teams, Communicating information and ideas, Conflict and self-management
· Working with people: Empowerment/Developing people/Performance management
· Personal Leadership and Effectiveness: Strategic and analytical thinking, Results orientation/Commitment to excellence, Appropriate and transparent decision making
Written/ verbal competency in English is required. Working knowledge of Urdu is essential.
Erken et al. 2019