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Gender Mainstreaming Consultancy for the Scaling Up of Post-Harvest Management Innovations for Grain Legumes in Africa

  • Ouagadougou, Centre Region, Burkina Faso
  • Consultance

Description du Poste

Background
The Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), is an African-led alliance that puts smallholder farmers at the center of the continent’s growing economy by transforming agriculture from a solitary struggle to survive into a business that thrives. Founded in 2006, at a time when agricultural development was emerging from a 20-year decline characterized by minimal growth and investment in the sector, AGRA’s mission is to catalyze and sustain an agricultural transformation in Africa through innovation-driven productivity increases and access to markets and finance that improve the livelihoods of smallholder farmers.
From the beginning, AGRA was positioned to tailor the research, technologies, and lessons of the world to the needs and opportunities of smallholder farmers and in particular agro-ecologies and farming systems. AGRA’s approach was private sector-driven and represented a more robust and sustainable way of addressing chronic, systemic failures in African agricultural development.
Together with its partners – including African governments, researchers, donors, the private sector and civil society – AGRA works to catalyze an agricultural transformation in Africa through innovation-driven and sustainable productivity increases and access to innovative finance and markets that improve the livelihoods of smallholder farmers. As the sector that employs the majority of Africa’s people, nearly all of them smallholder farmers, AGRA recognizes that transforming agriculture into a productive, efficient, and sustainable system is essential to ensuring food security, lifting millions out of poverty, and driving equitable growth across the continent.
AGRA will aim to catalyze and sustain inclusive agricultural transformations through integrated, country-based investment plans in 11 countries with high potential for take-off over the next five years. To deliver this transformation, AGRA and partners will draw on experiences gained over the last decade to implement a fully integrated set of activities in 11 countries located mainly in three high-potential, under-exploited agro-ecologies – the Guinea Savannah Zone (West Africa), the East African Highlands, and the Miombo Woodland (Southern Africa), where it has developed agricultural technologies, understands the landscape and has strong partnerships.
AGRA’s overall vision of success is centered on three headline goals to be achieved by 2020 through its efforts to catalyze, convene, and align with an alliance of partners and grantees:
• To support 11 African countries on a pathway to create and sustain agricultural transformation. The investment will empower AGRA to work through an ecosystem of public and private partners to work with government and private sector to overcome bottlenecks and unlock transformation. As part of this effort, AGRA will work to generate evidence and follow up with targeted technical, planning and coordination support.
• To increase incomes and food security for 9 million farm households through the direct result of its activities, its grantees, and partners to increase productivity and access to markets and finance in six countries where it is seeking to catalyze an agricultural transformation. At this level, AGRA will assist farmers to adopt an integrated package of improved seeds, fertilizers, and agronomic practices that close the yield gap sustainably in staple crops, and consequently support and improve their families’ well-being – through increased food security and additional income.
• To contribute to increasing the incomes and food security of an additional 21 million farm households through the contributions of AGRA, grantees, and partners to policies, programs, and partnerships that increase productivity, access to markets and finance in other countries where an agricultural transformation is already under way, but needs to be sustained.
In the attainment of these goals, AGRA will support progress towards transformation through integrated delivery approaches to achieve tipping points – the moment when the build-up of new activities, innovations, and solutions becomes self-sustaining and will no longer need AGRA’s support – at farmer, system and national level. This will minimize the philanthropic and public subsidy required from AGRA, while also ensuring these contributions are catalytic and create sustainable change at scale.
The Project
AGRA is implementing a three-year pilot project funded by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), supporting applied research to bring effective, field-tested innovations for reducing post-harvest loss of soybeans and cowpeas to thousands of smallholder farmers in Mozambique and Burkina Faso respectively. In addition, the project will identify opportunities to promote the adoption of technologies to process soybean for the production of a range of consumable soy products including soy milk, soy cheese, tofu and yoghurt. These products, with longer shelf lives, will enhance food security and lead to higher incomes for the farmers.
Soybean and cowpeas were selected for this project as they are a critical secondary food, providing essential affordable proteins as well as calories to the diets of the poor. The market opportunities for both crops are also growing, offering prospects to increase income for farmers producing a marketable surplus.
Innovative technologies such as Hermetic Storage Technology, which replaces oxygen in the grain storage bag with carbon dioxide, controlling grain storage pests without insecticide, and threshers which significantly reduce physical damage to the grains, increase threshing efficiency, enhance grain quality and make agriculture less labour intensive will be deployed under the project. Scaling up of simple technologies, for example the hermetic storage bags, can reduce post-harvest losses by up to 50 percent and significantly increase farmers’ income. The deployment of mechanized threshers will also reduce the drudgery of farming, which is especially significant among women who are the majority of farmers in Africa.
Launched in 2016, the project will help drive known solutions to scale and will benefit millions of farmers. In the short term, the innovations have the ability to directly benefit the lives of at least 10,000 smallholder farmers and up to 60,000 by 2020. The project is a partnership aimed at increasing food security and farmers’ incomes, and building a stronger agricultural sector in Africa. Reducing post-harvest losses, increasing the quality of produce and improving farmers’ access to markets are key to sustaining the productivity-driven transformation of the agricultural sector.
The project will field-test post-harvest technology delivery models for cowpea and soybean in Mozambique and Burkina Faso in the following areas;
• Improved threshers – machines that separate grain from the plant
• Crop storage methods, including the triple-layer Purdue Improved Crop Storage bags
• Other post-harvest management practices, such as agro-dealer networks, cooperatives, and small commercial farmers as integrated service providers,
The researchers will identify how post-harvest technologies can alleviate women’s workloads and contribute positively to their livelihoods. The project will use business models that ensure long-term economic, environmental, and social sustainability. It will also leverage partnerships between the public and private sectors, farmers’ organizations, and other social entrepreneurs.
The project will also engage 60 youth as service providers and increase incomes through farmer-market linkages. These innovations are expected to reduce post-harvest losses from the current 30% to 10% for the two crops in the target areas. The research team will share evidence and lessons from the scaling up efforts to improve implementation in the field, and inform policy change and investment.
In this context, we wish to engage two consultants, one in Mozambique who MUST be a Mozambique national and fluent in written and spoken Portuguese and the other in Burkina Faso who MUST be a Burkina Faso national and fluent in written and spoken French.
Scope of Work
Considering the role of women in agriculture in both Mozambique and Burkina Faso, this project recognizes the need to increase their access to technologies, markets, information and practical knowledge. To sustain the adoption of improved storage technologies, there is also need to address the issue of the distribution system of hermetic storage bags. To increase the benefits of these technologies especially to women and sustain these efforts, the two projects recognize the need for:
Ø Continued awareness-creation and adoption through gender-focused activities to increase participation of women in cowpea and soya post-harvest management activities. These activities could target women’s associations or women in communities in the target regions of the focus countries;
Ø Improved access to PICS technology by creating groups or using women’s associations as a platform to buy PICS bags from vendors or distributors. In addition, the women’s groups could be used as a platform to market cowpea stored by its members. Purchasing the PICS bags as a group and selling stored cowpea through the group would increase their bargaining power;
Ø Sensitizing micro-lending institutions to initiate inventory credit activities targeted at women to improve access to the bags and cash at harvest when cowpea prices are low. This would allow women to obtain cash to address pressing needs at harvest while waiting for the cowpea/soybean price to increase, as it does annually.
Ø The increased access to threshing and winnowing services through women’s associations or agro dealers, which would greatly reduce the drudgery.
To achieve the targets listed above, the project will address various challenges that limit the participation of women through a number of activities. The consultancy, will include but not be limited to the following tasks:
1. Sensitize the implementing partners (grantees) on gender inclusiveness as well as gender expectations and outputs. The grantees are all expected to ensure that gender is comprehensively included by addressing issues affecting both men and women in a manner that l enhances their capacity to participate and benefit from these projects.
2. The consultant is expected to facilitate sessions for the grantees to recognize and mitigate gender-related challenges in their specific contexts.
3. Build grantee and beneficiary skills in the use of gender analytical tools. Many grantees do not clearly understand ‘how to’ include gender aspects in their day-to-day work due to absence of methodological processes through which the same can be measured and addressed, in a cost effective manner. Therefore, the consultant is expected to share quick, simple tools that could be utilized in assessing gender gaps and in devising strategies to be inclusive, of the same.
4. Train the grantees on how to design, integrate, monitor and assess the integration of gender dimensions.
5. Assist the grantees to develop measurable action plans and targets as per their proposals. The consultant is expected to develop activities that will be carried out within this project with the grantee to address existing gender gaps that would otherwise hinder the project’s success; as well as relevant indicators that will be tracked over time by AGRA’s Monitoring & Evaluation Unit. These activities will be specific to each project. The measurable action plans are key in developing logic models and will identify performance indicators and targets to support the outcome measurement process. The consultant is expected to work with the grantees and align the work plan with them, with attention to cropping calendars.
6. The consultant will provide support to the grantees over the project life, from May 2017 to March 2019
Deliverables
The consultancy will be expected to deliver, the following outputs:
1. Inception Report, including work plan for implementing the gender plans
2. Gender Analysis Report
3. Progress Report (bi annual)
4. Case study documentation of best practices
5. Report of training workshops held **

Comment postuler

Questions and/or clarifications may be submitted to AMbaabu@agra.org by 20.03.2017 Responses will be shared with all those who will have shared their e-mail addresses with us by 25.03.2017 Submission All interested consultants or consultancy companies are asked to submit their proposals by close of business on 07.04.2017 at 1700 Hours East Africa Time (GMT +3) to the following email address: procurement@agra.org Disclaimer AGRA reserves the right to determine the structure of the process, number of short-listed participants, the right to withdraw from the proposal process, the right to change this timetable at any time without notice and reserves the right to withdraw this tender at any time, without prior notice and without liability to compensate and/or reimburse any party.

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