|Location :||Home Based with travel in the 4 countries of the Region|
|Application Deadline :||22-May-19 (Midnight New York, USA)|
|Time left :||9d 15h 43m|
|Additional Category :||Gender Equality|
|Type of Contract :||Individual Contract|
|Post Level :||International Consultant|
|Languages Required :||English French|
|Starting Date : (date when the selected candidate is expected to start)||27-May-2019|
|Duration of Initial Contract :||2 months|
|Expected Duration of Assignment :||2 months|
Over the last decade, the four riparian countries around Lake Chad – Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria, have experienced unprecedented levels of crises, exacerbated by repeated incidences of violence from the Boko Haram terrorist group. The humanitarian crisis in the Lake Chad Basin (LCB) continues to be severe, with more than 10.7 million people still requiring life-saving assistance and protection. Close to a decade now, attacks by Boko Haram insurgents remain frequent, and violent conflict continues to fuel large-scale human suffering in Nigeria, especially the north-east region and parts of Niger, Chad and Cameroon. Communities and individuals in the LCB are resilient to shocks and have already withstood numerous crisis of different nature in the past decades. Life-saving humanitarian assistance has been critical to help them absorb the impact of these socks and it must continue.
Yet, it is critical to urgently scale up stabilization, resilience, recovery, and development-oriented activities in the LCB to help people and communities recover as quickly as possible and help prevent a further deterioration of the crisis. While acute emergency needs continue, delivering aid year after year on a humanitarian modus operandi will not be enough to bend the vulnerability curve and bring communities back on the sustainable development path. A more joined up approach to good governance, peace, humanitarian and development programing is needed for a qualitative move in resilience programming in the region.
Research shows that the crisis in the LCB stems from the mobilization of people’s perception of exclusion, and injustice, rooted in inequalities. The Government of Nigeria identified the underlying causes of the crisis in the Lake Chad Basin as high inequalities, perceived social injustice, lack of social service provision, historic marginalization, inadequate economic opportunities, high levels of poverty and the impact of climate change and land degradation.
Human rights abuses, particularly those of women and children are more rampant in attacks carried out by Boko Haram. Majority of suicide bombings perpetrated by Boko Haram have been carried out by women and girls. Nearly all recent suicide attacks in the Far North region of Cameroon have been carried out by young women and girls. Since the beginning of 2014 more than 2,000 women and young girls have been kidnapped by Boko Haram and some of them have been forced to get married and take part in armed conflicts, suicide bombers, sexual violence and other acts of violence like slavery. Violence, especially sex and gender-based violence (SGBV) against women and girls have accentuated existing gender inequalities and exposed women to the risk of heightened violence at home and in communities. This escalation of violence raises the issue of protection for Internal Displaced Persons (IDPs), host populations, refugees with emphasis on women, girls and children that have been frequently targeted by Boko Haram in its new conflict strategy.
Women and young people were even marginalized before the crisis and competition over natural resources due to the impacts of climate change has exacerbated their vulnerability. The lack of access to life-saving, medical, social care and insecurity caused by displacements has exacerbated women’s security and safety as well as destroyed their means of subsistence. So many women have been affected by the crisis (displaced women, women released by terrorist movements, survivors of SGBV…). Therefore, Life-saving humanitarian assistance and resilience is critical to help them, and specific approaches have to be adopted for their socio-economic reintegration.
Funding for protection, livelihoods assistance and reintegration support has been limited in Cameroon while patterns of sexual violence of an ethnic and sectarian nature impede the mobility needed for women to undertake vital economic and livelihood activities, such as gaining access to fields and markets in the Central African Republic. In Nigeria, women and adolescent girls are at risk of sexual violence when collecting firewood, limiting their livelihoods. GBV also occurs at home, on the way to school and during humanitarian distributions. Women and girls returning after abductions by Boko Haram face long-term health consequences and stigmatization and are forced to live with armed groups or face the consequences of pregnancies from rape. Women and girls in Niger face the world’s highest rates of child, early, and forced marriage and low rates of formal education, which has been exacerbated by the conflict.
In response to the above-mentioned challenges, the African Union and the Lake Chad Basin Commission in 2015, signed an agreement for the operationalization of the Multi National Joint Task Force (MNJTF) to bring an end to the Boko Haram insurgency in the Region. Despite the significant progress made by the MNJTF, it is agreed by all stakeholders that more is to be done to achieve overall success. A military intervention alone will not be enough to create positive peace and stability. It is necessary to engage women as partners and leaders in finding solutions for addressing the prevailing insecurity and preventing violent extremism. The UN Plan of Action on the prevention of violent extremism recommends the protection and empowerment of women as a central consideration in devising strategies to counter terrorism and violent extremism, and to ensure that any efforts to counter terrorism and violent extremism do not have an adverse impact on the rights of women and girls.
A Regional Stabilization Strategy (RSS) for the Areas in the Lake Chad Basin Affected by Boko Haram was developed by the LCBC and was endorsed by AU in December 2018. The strategy is anchored on nine pillars with nine strategic objectives including a specific pillar on gender. It is recognized in the strategy that, issues of gender are at the heart of the crisis around Lake Chad and will be central to its sustainable resolution. As a matter of equality and justice, the proposed approach is to improve their protection and welfare while ensuring their empowerment as key actors as well as beneficiaries of this Strategy across all its pillars. Other strategies to deal with these problems in the region include the UNISS and the UNIS Support plan, ….
It is against the afore mentioned backdrop and in line with key strategies mentioned above that UN Women is determined to develop a program to scale up interventions to promote/enhance women’s leadership and participation in stabilisation, resilience and recovery in the affected areas in the Lake Chad Basin region.
Duties and Responsibilities
The consultant will report to the UN Women Regional Policy Adviser on Peace, Security and Humanitarian Action based in Dakar.
Under the direct supervision of the Regional Policy Adviser on Peace, Security and Humanitarian Action, the International consultant will:
- Collate and if necessary supplement existing country analyses in specified regions/ provinces on women’s situation in Lake Chad Basin (Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states in Nigeria; Diffa Region in Niger; Region du
- Lac and Hajder-Lamis Region in Chad; The Far North and North Region of Cameroon.)
- Hold meetings with key actors/organizations and regional bodies as well as women organizations to supplement primary data in order to identify key priority areas/needs;
- Organize consultations with different groups of women and girls affected by the conflict to collect their priorities;
- Conduct a partner analysis and suggest the type of medium/longer-term efforts that need to be supported and scaled up, in parallel with humanitarian and stabilization efforts, to build resilience and which can be initiated now to achieve collective outcomes and make the 2030 Agenda a reality for the more than 10 million people affected by crisis year after year in the Lake Chad Basin;
- Explore gaps in leadership, livelihoods, economic empowerment and GBV prevention and response programming to inform UN Women’s interventions based on its comparative advantage vis-à-vis other UN agencies and international actors;
- Identify lessons learnt and good practices emerging from UN Women led programmatic interventions in the region across different portfolios (WPS, LEAP, DRR, CVE);
- In consultation with UN Women offices in Niger, Cameroon and Niger, UN Women Regional office in Dakar, WSP and HACRO teams in New York, develop a regional flagship program (preferably joint programming and programs) on gender and women’s participation on stabilisation, resilience and recovery process in the Lake Chad Basin in line with the African Union’s and Lake Chad Basin Joint Commission’s strategy for the stabilisation, recovery and resilience of the Boko Haram affected areas. The program should be aligned to the other following strategies: UN Women’s 2019 Humanitarian Strategy, SDGs, the 2016 World Humanitarian
- Summit’s Agenda for Humanity, the Secretary General’s New Ways of Working, regional and sub-regional strategic frameworks such as the UN Integrated Strategy for the Sahel (UNISS) and its new Support Plan and the Action Plan of ECOWAS humanitarian policy (2018-2020)
- Identify opportunities for partnership and joint programming with other UN agencies on key thematic areas.
- A multi-year high-quality flagship program designed in a way to maximise partnership opportunities towards strengthening women’s role for the Stabilization, Recovery & Resilience of the Boko Haram- affected Areas of the Lake Chad Basin Region considering the Humanitarian, Peace and development nexus
- A mapping of key humanitarian, peace and security actors and key donors in the region (at country and regional level) and recommendations for partnership development and future resource mobilisation efforts.
Required Skills and Experience
Advanced University degree in social sciences, international development, gender studies, law, international relations or another related field, or equivalent.
At least 10 years of progressive professional experience working on gender and women rights, Humanitarian action with a focus on program development and Management or another related field. Experience in West and Central Africa is required. Experience in the Sahel is a plus.
Fluency in French and English (both oral and written) is required.