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Consultant, Creating a Theory of Change for an Anti-Racist Feminist Response to Crisis and Forced Displacement


The Women’s Refugee Commission (WRC) works to improve the lives and defend the rights of refugee and internally displaced women, children, and young people. As a research and advocacy organization, WRC is dedicated to securing systemic changes in policy and practice that ensure uprooted women, children and young people can fully exercise their rights to protection, services, and self-sufficiency.

Project Background

With support from the Government of Canada, WRC is working to advance equitable and inclusive transformative change in the response to crises and displacement, and specifically in the humanitarian sector, which has a mandate to respond to crises and displacement globally. This project is contributing to addressing the need for a systemic change to humanitarian response: to shift from an inherently externally and global north driven approach to one that is led by crisis-affected communities and, in particular, women, people of color, and other historically marginalized groups. Our vision of an anti-racist feminist response is one that addresses the systemic inequalities, based on gender, race, social class, ethnicity, ability, religion, age, sexuality, and other axes of marginalization, that shape the experience of, and responses to, crises and displacement.

Since July 2020, WRC has worked closely with a Core Working Group on a virtual research project aimed at creating dialogue and collaboration between civil society and humanitarian actors for a more inclusive and locally driven response to crises and displacement. The Core Working Group comprises 20 experts from more than 10 countries, working in the areas of humanitarian response and policy, refugee networks, disability rights, sexual orientation and gender identity expression (SOGIE) rights, feminist movements, women’s funds, governance, and futures work. WRC and the Core Working Group have completed Phases 1 and 2 of the Project, which has entailed the following activities:

  • Co-design of a questionnaire using Active Sensemaking methodology, a technique that utilizes storytelling as a way to better understand complex phenomena;
  • Piloting, refinement, and translation of the questionnaire (into French, Spanish, and Arabic); and
  • Collection of qualitative and quantitative data in the form of stories and experiences from over 100 humanitarian and non-humanitarian actors responding to crises and displacement.

Phase 3 of the project will take place from January through March 2021, and will include the following activities:

  • Co-analysis of data using Active Sensemaking methodology;
  • Creation of a project report;
  • Co-creation of a Theory of Change for an anti-racist feminist response to crises and forced displacement; and
  • Advocacy and knowledge dissemination to influence policymakers and donors.

To this end, WRC is seeking a consultant to lead the process of co-creating a Theory of Change and draft recommendations for advocacy and knowledge dissemination.

Project Dates: 9 February-31 March 2021

Key Objectives of the Consultancy

  1. Engage with Core Working Group members and other key stakeholders to co-create a Theory of Change for an anti-racist feminist response to crises and forced displacement.
  2. Synthesize findings and outputs from all phases of the project to finalize the Theory of Change and accompanying policy paper.
  3. Provide guidance on advocacy and donor engagement at the global, regional, national, and sub-national levels.

Consultant Roles, Responsibilities, and Deliverables

The Consultant will be responsible for three key activities that are part of phase 3 of this project. Each activity is outlined below with specific responsibilities and deliverables.

Activity 1: Phase 3 Planning and Stakeholder Engagement (estimated 5 working days)

The Consultant will be responsible for planning Phase 3 of this project and ensuring engagement of key stakeholders. Specifically, the Consultant will:

  1. Design a detailed timeline for Phase 3;
  2. Outline engagement techniques for co-creation of the Theory of Change; and
  3. Identify and engage key stakeholders from the Core Working Group and beyond

Activity 1 Deliverables:

  1. Detailed workplan for Phase 3
  2. Final list of stakeholders to participate in co-creation of Theory of Change

Activity 2: Co-creation of a Theory of Change for a Feminist and Anti-Racist Response to Conflict and Forced Displacement (estimated 15 working days)

We would like to co-create the methodology for stakeholder participation with the Consultant. Some possibilities include: two half-day workshops with the identified stakeholders to co-create the Theory of Change. The co-creation process should stem from findings and outputs from Phases 1 and 2 of the project, as well as broader evidence and priorities of the field. Specifically, the Consultant will:

  1. Plan, organize, and lead at least virtual engagement with key stakeholders;
  2. Work collaboratively with stakeholders and utilize project findings/outputs to co-create a draft Theory of Change;
  3. Finalize the Theory of Change in the form of an infographic with an accompanying paper or policy brief;
  4. Solicit feedback from key stakeholders, including co-branding as is desired and appropriate.

Activity 2 Deliverables:

  1. Agenda and materials for workshops
  2. Completion of virtual engagement with key stakeholders
  3. Draft Theory of Change and paper
  4. Stakeholder feedback on Theory of Change (infographic and paper)
  5. Final Theory of Change and paper (by March 30, 2021)

Activity 3: Guidance and Recommendations for Advocacy and Donor Engagement (estimated 5 working days)

The Consultant will utilize the Theory of Change and other project findings to provide guidance and recommendations to local actors for advocacy and donor engagement. Specifically, the Consultant will:

  1. Liaise with Core Working Group members and other key stakeholders to identify opportunities for advocacy and donor engagement;
  2. Create a guidance document outlining how to utilize the Theory of Change and other project outputs for advocacy and donor engagement.

Activity 3 Deliverables:

  1. Guidance document on advocacy (by March 30, 2021)

WRC Role and Responsibilities

WRC will be responsible for the overall management of this project and coordination related to partner activities, spending, and deliverables to the donor (Government of Canada). WRC will also lead communication and advocacy efforts at the global level, and will be a collaborator, thought partner, and co-author on all knowledge products resulting from this project. WRC will provide all existing project materials to the consultant and support reaching out to key stakeholders who are part of the project’s Core Working Group. To ensure deadlines are met, WRC will be responsible for providing timely feedback on project deliverables.

Estimated Number of Working Days: 25 days (from February 9 -March 31, 2021)
Location: Remote
Deadline for Application: February 5, 2021

How to Apply

Please submit a brief email describing qualifications for the project, resume/CV, and 1-2 examples of relevant work with the subject line: “Theory of Change” via this link.