Transnational Consultancy for Support to conduct a budget expenditure analysis

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Terms of Reference

Transnational Consultancy for Support to conduct a budget expenditure analysis, and development of a budget tracking tool, and produce a budget brief on Early Childhood Development Education .

Type: Consultancy

Duration: estimated 15working days

Duty station: Virtual, mostly desk reviews

  1. Context

Zimbabwe Network of Early Childhood Development Actors (ZINECDA) in partnership with Lesotho National ECD Coalition of Lesotho (NECDOL), and the Malawi ECD Coalition are implementing a transnational advocacy capacity building project which seeks to develop stronger and vibrant Early Child Development and Education (ECDE) in southern Africa. The strengthened CSOs will engage in transnational advocacy to make governments in Southern Africa more transparent and accountable to their citizens on ECDE issues. Transparent and accountable governments ultimately improve the development and implementation of sustainable, equitable, inclusive, and gender-responsive ECDE policies, legislation, and systems as well as improved ECDE financing by governments, CSOs, and donors. This three-year project to be implemented in Lesotho, Malawi, and Zimbabwe will run from 2021 through to 2023.

There is a growing trend of government-led financing strategies in which public resources play a central and catalytic role in mobilizing domestic resources for implementing ECD policies, programs, and services. In most cases, public financing is the most important and sustainable mechanism to meet their objectives. Zimbabwe, Lesotho, and Malawi have made good progress in developing national policies and implementation plans that support early learning. To move from policy to budget commitment, further steps are needed to cost and resource them through the public budget. ECDE financing is not simply about allocating more resources but also about using available funds more efficiently, effectively, and equitably important step towards budget commitment. Yet there is little in the way of research data that unpacks ECDE budget expenditure, nor tracks expenditure therefore this research study seeks to close this gap. To this end, the implementing organizations, through the lead agency ZINECDA, are seeking the services of a consultant to analyze the ECDE 2016-2021 budget expenditure analysis trends in Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia, and Zimbabwe and to develop a budget tracking mechanisms and tools that can be adopted and adapted regionally over at least three years from 2021.

2. Objective and purpose of the consultancy

The objective of this consultancy is to develop a succinct budget analysis and trends of Zimbabwe, Malawi, and Lesotho by identifying the critical public finance contributions towards ECDE and develop a tracking mechanism/tool for use from 2021-2023. The consultant will also build the capacity of project partners to effectively use budget analyses and tracking reports for policy advocacy to increase ECD financing in the six countries.

  • Details of how the work should be delivered

Subject to agreement and validation during the inception phase, it is intended that the Budget analysis and tracking assignment comprise of the following components:

1. Assessment and analysis of the amounts of budgets allocated to Education in the context of the national budget and or GDP, ECDE as a percentage of the overall education budget, percentage of the national budget, sources of funds allocation, spending per child, etc from 2016-2021

3. Detailed analysis of the structure of the ECDE sector’s budgets by examining the internal distribution and cost areas as defined and classified in the Ministries of  Education in Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

5. Disparities in subnational allocation and expenditure for ECDE, a comparison of Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and other Southern African countries.

6. A transnational ECDE budget tracking mechanism and tools monitoring disbursements, efficiency, effective utilisations, beneficiaries, etc.

6. Key recommendations for more effective and efficient allocation and use of resources for ECDE.

3. Key Deliverables

  • An inception report.
  • Develop an ECDE transnational budget trends analysis for Eswatini, Mozambique, Zambia, Lesotho, Malawi, and Zimbabwe from 2016-2021
  • Develop a tracking mechanism and guide or training manual for Members of Parliament, senior government officials, and senior civil society representatives.
  • Facilitate the budget and analysis and tracking workshop with members of parliament senior government officials and senior civil society representatives in Eswatini, Mozambique, Zambia Lesotho, Malawi, and Zimbabwe.
  • Conduct validation meetings with key stakeholders to discuss and agree on key findings and messages for inclusion in the Budget brief.

4. Minimum requirements

The consultant is expected to have the following qualifications/specialized knowledge/experience required to complete the task:

• An advanced University Degree in Economics, Public Policy, Governance, Fiscal reform or

other relevant areas;

• 5 years in experience in Public Finance Management (PFM) and budget analysis;

• A solid knowledge of PFM instruments, and proven experience on similar analyses of the

State Budget with focus on the education sector

• Strong analytical and writing skills, and the ability to present the results in a simple language, making use of interesting visual aid (maps, graphs, and other visual tools);

• Strong communication (oral and written) skills;

• Previous work experience in education financing is a strong asset.

• High proficiency in English;

• Ability to complete the task in a tight schedule and with limited supervision.

6. Technical proposal to be submitted

  • Technical bids are required stating the approaches, methods, technical skills and competencies, and other relevant information. The proposal must be less than 10 pages.
  • Financial proposal (300 words)

• Proposed approach and methodology (max 1500 words), including:

     a. Timeline and milestones

      b. Risk and mitigation measures

• Annex: Short Sample or links to related work previously conducted by the consultant

In addition, please provide your Curriculum Vitae.

7. Content of financial proposal to be submitted

The applicant should fill in the Financial Offer Template and specify the consultancy fee per day of work, request for the tasks described in the Terms of Reference in USD, as well as a breakdown of travel and daily subsistence allowance (DSA), costs, if applicable.

The final selection will be based on the principle of “best value for money” i.e. achieving the desired outcome at the lowest possible fee.

8.         Payment schedule

The winning consultant will be paid 50% of the total agreed service after acceptance of the inception report while the balance will be paid on the acceptance of completed the tasks at hand.

9. Application submission processes

All applications should be sent by 23 July 2021 at the following email address: [email protected] Hard copies will not be accepted. 

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