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TERMS OF REFERENCE FOR CONSULTANCY TO DEVELOP A DISTRICT ENVIRONMENTAL ACTION PLAN FOR TEREGO

TERMS OF REFERENCE FOR CONSULTANCY TO DEVELOP A DISTRICT ENVIRONMENTAL ACTION PLAN FOR TEREGO

Position Title:                                    Consultancy

Contract type :                                  Fixed payment

Location :                                            Terego District

Expected duration of assignment:  3 months

Reports to:                                           Executive Director ECO

Date of publication:                           November 2021

Background and Objectives

ECO: The Ecological Christian Organization (ECO) is a Ugandan non-governmental organization that aims to support marginalized, underserved and vulnerable populations regarding sustainable livelihoods. ECO was registered in 2005, its programme areas include: Natural Resource Governance, Climate Change Resilience and Integrated Risk Management (IRM). ECO works in five geographical focus areas which are: Karamoja Sub region, the lake Victoria basin, the Albertain region and West Nile region. The work focuses on the protection of natural resources, climate change adaptation, resilience and livelihood, resource policy as well as on the management and restoration of ecosystems.

Terego District :

Terego district is located in the West Nile region of Uganda. It is bordered by Yumbe District to the North, Maracha strict to the North West, Madi- Okollo District to the South, Vurra County to the South East and Arua City to the West. Terego covers a total of 1,163.3 sq. kms of land with six SubCounties, Thirty -Nine Parishes and Three Hundred Sixty-six villages. The District has a bi-modal rainfall pattern with light rains between April and October. The Savannah grassland by far is the predominant vegetation in the district. Vegetative Cover of the District used to be characterized of open lands with equatorial type of savannah grasslands, with small pockets of natural forests on hills, especially along the northern parts of the district. The original vegetation was composed of mixed woody savanna, which has greatly been reduced by subsistence farming that currently occupies about 80% of the total land area. . It should be noted that, though the tobacco companies used to supply tree seedlings to the farmers to raise their own woodlots, most farmers never planted woodlots and continued to rely on wild wood resources for curing tobacco which now is blamed on rapid environmental degradation in the areas.
The overall population of the district is projected at 401,677 persons, 58% of these are nationals and 42% are refugees. The economy of the population is dependent on subsistence farming (UBOS, 2014).
Terego District promotes the government’s exemplary refugee settlement model that allows refugees to interact freely and set up investments, which provides an opportunity to harness their potential to accelerate local economic development.
Rhino Camp in the Arua district currently hosts nearly 123,000 refugees on an area of 85 km2 . 97% of households use firewood as a primary source of energy for cooking and heating. Wood is also the most widely used building material. This immense need is difficult to absorb by the local ecosystem, which is also under pressure from the expansion of agricultural activity. Combined, these factors contribute to the rapid deterioration of the state of soils, vegetation and forests.
Efforts to strengthen the ecosystem are urgently needed in order to continue meeting the needs of refugee and host communities and at the same time keeping the region usable for agriculture in the long-term.

Objective of the assignment

ECO seeks to engage reliable individuals / a firm to develop a comprehensive District Environmental Action plan for Terego District. The District Environment Action Plan will present the opportunity to halt environmental degradation, restore degraded ecosystems and promote sustainable management of natural resources.

Scope of Work

To realize the above objectives, the consultant shall critically verify the scope of services indicated and may extend, reduce or amend those services wherever such is deemed necessary according to his/her own professional judgment, knowledge and experience.

Any suggested amendments to the ToR should be clearly documented within the Consultant’s Submission, including accompanying justification for the proposed amendments, and must be approved by the contracting party at Ecological Christian Organization (ECO).

Tasks and deliverables

Tasks
It is anticipated that the Assignment will be undertaken through the following tasks:
●Task 1: Review of available documents, preparation of inception report and virtual kick-off meeting.
● Task 2: Development of the stakeholder analysis and stakeholder engagement plan
● Task 3: Field visit(s) and engagement with stakeholders.
● Task 4: Development of the Environmental Action Plan.
Further details of the required tasks, the scope and guidance on content and proposed methodologies are provided in the sub-sections below.

Task 1: Review of available documents, preparation of inception report and virtual kick-off Meeting

• Terego Local Government and ECO will provide any available background documentation regarding the environmental and social aspects of the landscape, including previous Arua District Environmental Action Plans, baseline studies and mitigation measures already being adopted and under implementation.
• The Consultant is also expected to explore any relevant external research/literature. Based on the document review, the consultant is expected to prepare an inception report. The inception report will include among others; (i) identify and detail gaps resulting from the review of the available documents (including the old District Environment Action Plan, previous environment assessment reports and mitigation measures already being adopted) (ii) Specify any gaps to mitigate environmental and social risks, identified through the document analysis, that need to be addressed and b) any additional assessments required to develop the DEAP; (iii) Detailed work plan with accompanying budget (iv) Preparation, participation and documentation of a virtual kick-off meeting, including any changes to the work outlined in these ToR.
• The proposed work plan, with accompanying detailed budget, will form the basis of the detailed terms of the assignment and shall be approved by Terego LG & ECO prior to commencement of the consultancy.
• Prior to commencing the Assignment, the Consultant shall participate in a virtual kick-off meeting with relevant ECO & LG staff members at which the inception report will be presented.. This meeting will also enable ECO & LG to provide the Consultant with additional context information for the tasks and the list of documentation to be reviewed.

Task 2: Carry out a stakeholder analysis and a stakeholder engagement plan
Based on the information provided by Terego LG & ECO during the first task, the Consultant will carry out stakeholder analysis and develop subsequent stakeholder engagement plans. The stakeholder analysis will serve as an input in the development a comprehensive stakeholder engagement plan. This plan is meant to provide a better understanding of the mechanisms and nature of engagement with the different rights holder groups, including their participation and representation in decision-making. The stakeholder analysis should be inclusive of the vulnerable and marginalized (including refugees) poor that are prone to the impacts of environment and natural resource degradation.

Task 3: Carry out field visit(s) and consult with stakeholders, based on the stakeholder Engagement plan.

Data collection and consultation processes in the framework of this Assignment will include one or more field visits to the landscape program sites (to be agreed in consultation with Terego LG & ECO).
The selection of field visit sites/communities will be evaluated and jointly established by the Consultant, Terego LG &ECO team, based on the following;
●Accessibility of the villages by road and possible mobility of community members to the location where the consultation will take place.
● Ethnicity: Differences in culture and ethnic identity;
● Livelihoods: Differences in the main livelihood strategies – agriculture, fishing, etc.;
● Dependency: Dependency of household livelihoods on natural resources such as forests and wetlands, among others
● Impact: Difference in types of project-related positive and negative impacts and their spatial distribution.
● Historical conflicts: Areas which have had conflicts between refugees and local communities.
Site visits and field work shall be carried out in cooperation with Terego LG, ECO Project staff, and any other relevant authorities as appropriate.

Task 4: Development of the Environment Action Plan Frame Work

The DEAP serves as a framework for managing and mitigating the environmental and social risks and impacts associated with implementing the Project. Its content will depend on issues identified during the documentation review, the field visit and the engagement with stakeholders.
To prepare the DEAP, the Consultant in close cooperation with the LG & ECO Project staff will:
(a) Propose a set of mitigating actions to address potential adverse impacts highlighted by the
earlier steps;
(b) Assess the potential for locally sourced and managed mitigation actions including the required support for their sustainability
(c) Determine requirements (e.g. in terms of capacity, partners, resources, etc. that need to be in place) for ensuring that responses are effectively made in a timely manner; and
(d) Describe the means for meeting those requirements (including an indicative budget and Timeline).
(e) Estimate time required for the mitigating action to become effective and recommendations for the frequency of status monitoring and review.
Non-technical summary of the findings from the DEAP will be disclosed to key local stakeholders including communities. Based on the provided feedback and review from the local stakeholders and ECO, the final versions will be developed. Requested changes shall be duly considered by the Consultant. After approval of final documents, the Consultant shall submit the final versions in PDF and Word format.

Deliverables

Task 1 – an inception report
Task 2 and 3 – stakeholder analysis (including refugees), list of stakeholders that will participate in the consultative visit and engagement plan for the district and summary report of stakeholder engagement activities.
Task 4 – Draft and final DEAP with annexes (including a non-technical summary)

Qualification and experience of the consultant

The prospective consultant/firm/individual shall be required to possess the following minimum qualifications
• Master’s Degree in Natural Resources Management.
Experience:
The following experience is required for this assignment:
• Demonstrate a good understanding of Terego district with practical working experience in such environments.
• Demonstrated experience in developing and delivering high quality environmental action plans, socio-economic assessments, including gender analyses and natural resource management.
• Excellent language knowledge of the region
• Demonstrated ability to work in technical teams
• Demonstrated analytical and report-writing skills.
The Consultant shall provide updated curricula vitae (CV) of the proposed staff. Key staff should have adequate education, professional experience. The Consultant shall provide a description of tasks to be performed by each team member, their respective estimated time input as well as details on the selection and experience of the proposed members with regard to their tasks. ECO anticipates that proposed team members will include locals in the area with (1) sound expertise of the country legal context and (2), personal knowledge of the Terego district and the communities that reside within it.

Please note that key staff presented in the Consultant’s proposal may not be replaced without the prior approval of ECO.

Payment schedule and modalities

Deliverable Timeline Payment terms per deliverable (percentage based on contract amount)
Inception report 2 weeks after signing contract 40%
Draft DEAP 60 days after inception report is approved 30%
Final DEAP 2 weeks after review of draft documents 30%

Request for proposals

On the basis of these ToR, the Consultant should prepare a proposal that covers:
● Proposed tasks and outputs (methodology);
● Team composition, including summary of expertise and experience
● Tentative work schedule (activities and milestones);
● Estimated level of effort;
● Estimated travel cost estimate (travels + per diem).
● The availability to sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement.

Completed application documents (technical and financial proposals) should be submitted to the Executive Director ECO through email at: ed@ecouganda.org

The deadline for applying is midnight 9th December 2021. Only the successful applicants will be contacted.

Proposal evaluation

The proposal will be evaluated by ECO against the following criteria:
● Knowledge of the natural resource sector in Uganda
● Level of expertise and experience in developing DEAPs
● Experience in participatory rural appraisal techniques
● Level of expertise and experience in the West- Nile region particularly in Terego district.
● Any other relevant expertise and experience (e.g. Law enforcement, livelihoods, stakeholder engagement, participatory approaches, etc.).
● Language skills (including local languages)
● Overall quality of the proposal (incl. quality of the proposed methodology for stakeholder engagement).
● Cost – i.e. value for money.
● Availability of consultant for the assignment

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