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CALL FOR REGIONAL CONSULTANT APPLICATIONS

TERMS OF REFERENCE FOR REGIONAL CONSULTANT 

To Conduct a Study of Needs and Challenges for Women Running for Elected Office in Iraq

Background

The Iraqi constitution mandates a quota of 25% for women in the Council of Representatives (COR), the national parliament, and in the Provincial Councils (PCs), elected in each of the eighteen provinces. The existence of the quota since 2005 has helped many women assume elected office and raised the profile of women in politics. Despite this, women candidates have difficulty in winning seats in COR or in PCs on their own merit, without the quota system. According to statements by women candidates, women need support in a variety of areas in order to strengthen their candidacy and present a persuasive alternative to the electorate. 

The Iraq Foundation (IF), an independent NGO working in Iraq since 2003, will implement a project to study the challenges, and the opportunities, facing women candidates for elected office, with the purpose of providing the international community and local stakeholders with a needs-assessment/study that can form the basis of evidence-driven future support. The project is supported by, and will be carried out in coordination with, the United Nations Assistance Mission to Iraq (UNAMI). All reports and other outputs of the project will be shared with UNAMI. The Economic and Social Council for West Asia (ESCWA) will provide input on international standards and best practices. In a subsequent phase of the project, and in the context of Provincial Council elections scheduled for April 2020, IF intends to use the findings of the study to carry out training for women candidates PC elections in early 2020. 

The Iraq Foundation seeks to hire a regional expert to prepare a framework and tools for the needs-assessment/study, train local researches to conduct the research, and submit a report and recommendations based on the research outcomes. The regional expert will report to the Iraq Foundation. Where indicated, the regional expert will consult with ESCWA.

Specific Terms of Reference

  1. Using international standards, design a framework for a study of the needs of women candidates for elected office in Iraq and the electoral challenges they face. Consult with ESCWA in finalizing the framework.
  2. Work with a local consultant to define the local context for the study
  3. Train local researchers 
  4. Oversee the conduct of the research and compile data.
  5. Prepare a needs-assessment study based on the research, with a recommendation for specific assistance to meet the needs. Consult with ESCWA in finalizing the study

 

Scope of Work

  1. Using international standards, prepare a methodology and tools in Arabic to conduct research into the needs of women candidates and the practical challenges they face in their candidacy for elected office. ESCWA will provide input on international standards and regional models. 
  2. Communicate with Iraqi local gender expert to anchor the research in the local Iraqi socio-political context 
  3. Train local researches on methodology and proper use of research tools 
  4. Compile and analyze data from the research output 
  5. Prepare a draft study in English based on the research, identifying the electoral needs of women candidates, and recommending interventions by local and international agencies. Obtain input from ESCWA on international standards and regional models
  6. Submit the draft study to the Iraq Foundation for review 
  7. Edit and submit the final study to Iraq Foundation

Specific Deliverables

  1. A framework and tools for research in Arabic
  2. Training of local researchers in Arabic
  3. English language report/needs assessment with recommendations for action

Required Skill and experience

  1. Demonstrated understanding of women’s political participation in the MENA region 
  2. Demonstrated experience in research and study of needs and challenges facing women in politics in the MENA region
  3. Excellent written and oral skills in English and Arabic 
  4. Ability to travel to Erbil
  5. Preferred: previous work with UN agencies

Duration

Estimated number of working days: 20 days from October 15- December 30, including two days in Erbil. 

Remuneration: $11,000. Travel and per diem expenses will be paid by the Iraq Foundation.

Deadline for receiving applications: October 5, 2019.

Please respond to: fakri.b@iraqfoundation.org, with a copy to iraq@iraqfoundation.org

The Iraq Foundation (IF) wishes to contract with an External Evaluator to carry out an independent evaluation of its Women Against Violence and Extremism (WAVE) project, funded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands. The one-year project is implemented in Ramadi, Anbar province; Tikrit, Salaheddin province; and Mosul and Hamdaniya, in Nenawa province, and targeted women, families, and local communities. For further information please see the attached Terms of Reference document.

Family event in Mosul

The Iraq Foundation (IF) is currently implementing a 12-month pilot project in 4 locations: the city of Mosul and Hamdaniya in Nenawa governorate; Hayy Al-Mal’ab in Ramadi, Anbar governorate; and Hayy Arba’een in the city of Tikrit, Salaheddin governorate, with the goal of equipping women to build family and community resilience against violence and extremism. The project is providing a core group (56) of returnee (and IDP) women who are survivors of violence with training to enable them to coach and guide a broader segment of women in their communities. Trained women “coaches” will reach out to and work with a broader group of women in the community to increase their understanding about VE and coach them to recognize extremist and violent behavior, build family resilience, and evolve strategies and tools to promote tolerance and moderation, and to resolve conflicts peacefully.

In the period December 1, 2018 -February 28, 2019, the Iraq Foundation and its partners implemented Objective 2 of the project. We completed the dialogue meetings (Objective 2, Activity 3), launched the family events (Objective 2, Activity 4), and held feedback meetings (Objective 2, Activity 5). Women Leaders (WL) who received training through the project held meetings with community women, of whom a large proportion are mothers, to raise awareness about VE, help women to identify signs of extremism or manifestations of violence, and coach them on building resilience by resolving family and community conflicts peacefully and through moderation and dialogue. WL encouraged community women to speak about their experiences and observations regarding violence and/or extremism, and how women can become mediators and agents in countering VE. Family events brought together mothers and children (both girls and boys) in community settings where competitive game

Family event in Hamdaniya

s and activities were played. WL and mothers observed the behavior of children during the competition to learn about children’s interactions and their ability to cooperate and compete peacefully. Local officials attended some of the family events. Following dialogue meetings and family events, WL held feedback sessions with mothers to assess the results of dialogues and community events and provide further coaching to mothers.

Notably, understanding about VE is expanding beyond the immediate beneficiaries targeted by the project. Community women who participated in the dialogue meetings, family events, and feedback sessions have been spreading their newly acquired knowledge and skills to other women, men, and children in their extended families and the community (please see Personal Narratives section below). WL have strengthened their status as coaches and mentors, and community women have encouraged others to benefit from their skills in mediation of conflicts or handling difficult situations with children. Teachers and other professionals who have participated in the project have been especially active in using their acquired knowledge and skills in their work environment, such as in classrooms, in medical clinics, and on the media. Local officials were supportive of the project, seeing it as a valuable contribution to CVE in their communities.

The Iraq Foundation (IF) is currently implementing a 12-month pilot project in 4 locations: the city of Mosul and Hamdaniya in Nenawa governorate; Hayy Al-Mal’ab in Ramadi, Anbar governorate; and Hayy Arba’een in the city of Tikrit, Salaheddin governorate, with the goal of equipping women to build family and community resilience against violence and extremism. The project is providing a core group (56) of returnee (and IDP) women who are survivors of violence with training to enable them to coach and guide a broader segment of women in their communities. Trained women “coaches” will reach out to and work with a broader group of women in the community to increase their understanding about VE and coach them to recognize extremist and violent behavior, build family resilience, and evolve strategies and tools to promote tolerance and moderation, and to resolve conflicts peacefully.

During the quarter September – November 2018, Iraq Foundation and its partners completed the third segment of the training for women in the four locations (Objective 1, Activity 2), with a three-day workshop devoted to developing their coaching and mentoring skills. Following this workshop, the women leaders began holding meetings with mothers in the community (Objective 2, Activity 3). The purpose of these “dialogue meetings” is to spread understanding of VE more broadly within the community through women’s networks, neighbors and families, and sensitize local women to manifestations of extremism and violence, whether within the family or within the community, with the objective of building resilience within families..

Women leaders used the coaching skills they had acquired through training to encourage women to question behavior around them, identify markers of violence, and explore ways in which women can mediate and mitigate actual or potential conflict, and encourage negotiation, moderation, and tolerance. Women leaders also undertook initiatives to mediate conflicts in the community, especially within families or between families.   They led meetings with local officials and stakeholders to inform them of their CVE mission and solicit their active participation and support in preventing or protecting against violence and undertaking remedial actions to avert potential extremism, such as among youth in schools.

Today and every day the Iraq Foundation is committed to advancing the rights of women and celebrating the amazing things women have accomplished. Happy International Women’s Day.

 

 

As bereaved mothers, sisters, daughters, and wives, women bear the brunt of violence brought on by radicalization. They, therefore, have a vested interest in peace and stability for their families and communities, and they should be empowered and mobilized to be at the forefront of countering violence and extremism (VE).

Iraq Foundation (IF) is implementing a 12-month pilot project in 4 locations: the city of Mosul and Hamdaniya in Nenawa governorate; Hayy Al-Mal’ab in Ramadi, Anbar governorate; and Hayy Arba’een in the city of Tikrit, Salaheddin governorate, with the goal of equipping women to build family and community resilience against violence and extremism. The project is providing a core group (56) of returnee (and IDP) women who are survivors of violence with training to enable them to coach and guide a broader segment of women in their communities. Trained women “coaches” will reach out to and work with a broader group of women in the community to increase their understanding about VE and coach them to recognize extremist and violent behavior, build family resilience, and evolve strategies and tools to promote tolerance and moderation, and to resolve conflicts peacefully.

While addressing women directly, the project also addresses stresses and tensions faced by families and therefore has a “whole community” dimension. The goal is to enable women, particularly those who have lost loved ones, to become agents for peace and moderation, to bolster resilience to radicalization among family members, and to develop women-led, community-based solutions to the problem of violence and extremism. The project will allow women to discuss challenges, define markers of VE from their own experiences, and come up with family-based interventions and community-based activities that can be effective within the family framework. The project takes into account ethnic and religious diversity in post-conflict locations and seeks to reflect diversity, and tolerance of diversity, in its programming.

The Iraq Foundation is pleased and honored to announce that Ms. Raya Barazanji has joined our Board.

Raya Barazanji is a senior program officer at the United States Institute for Peace for the Middle East programs focusing on Iraq, Syria, and Yemen. Previously she managed the Institute’s grantmaking program related to the Middle East and Africa regions. Before joining the Institute in 2010, Barazanji worked on counterterrorism programs relating to Iraq and the broader Middle East for a private sector corporation. Prior to that, and for eight years, she served as the Chief Operating Officer of the Iraq Foundation. In that capacity, she led the organization’s team in implementing democracy-building and human rights training projects, as well as supporting USAID initiatives to revitalize Iraq’s education system and to develop the capacity of civil society organizations and independent media.

Additionally, she managed a community organization and integration program for Iraqi refugees in the U.S. in the late 90s. She has over 20 years of experience in the design and management of democracy and peacebuilding programs with NGOs and is an avid advocate for women’s rights and gender equality in the Middle East and the Muslim World. Barazanji holds a master’s degree in international law and diplomacy from the Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy, Tufts University, and a bachelor’s from the College of Arts, Al-Mustansiriyah University in Baghdad.

We would like to extend our best wishes to all of our friends and supporters this holiday season!

The Iraq Foundation is pleased to announce the launch of its new project, Women Against Violence and Extremism (WAVE). It will be a 12-month, ground-breaking project implemented in Ninawa, Anbar, and Salaheddin governorates with the goal of equipping women to build family and community resilience against violence and extremism and contribute to social peace in their communities. It will seek to build the capacities of women leaders to identify markers and indicators of radicalization and violence, teach skills to counter violent extremism within communities, and raise awareness and advocacy for women’s role as the first line of defense against extremism. The project is funded by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The Iraq Foundation would like to wish a happy Eid al-Fitr to all Muslims in Iraq and around the world in culmination of the month of Ramadan. We wish everyone happiness and safety with friends and familyduring this holy time. Eid Mubarak!

 

يتقدم المعهد العراقي بأطيب التهاني وأصدق التمنيات بمناسبه عيد الفطر المبارك

 

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