Consultant – Hear our Voices Conference 2nd Edition – Amman, Jordan

  • Location:
  • Salary:
    negotiable / YEAR
  • Job type:
    CONTRACTOR
  • Posted:
    3 months ago
  • Category:
    Conference and Meeting Services
  • Deadline:
    10/02/2024

JOB DESCRIPTION

Description

Background

Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within.

Since 2015, civil society organisations (CSOs) working in Syria and refugee-hosting countries in the region have participated in the Brussels Conference on ‘Supporting the future of Syria and the Region’ (BC). The annual BC is a key moment in the policy, advocacy and fundraising response to the crisis in Syria and neighbouring countries, bringing together government representatives from refugee-hosting countries, senior UN officials, representatives of donor governments, international and national CSOs working in Syria and the region, and Syrian diaspora representatives.

The format typically consists of ‘Days of Dialogue’ between decision-makers and civil society and ‘Ministerial Meetings’ which involve policy statements from States and financial pledges.

At different iterations of the BC, the organisers consulted and included CSOs to higher or lower degrees (i.a the preparation of the agenda, the selection of CSO participants for panels, and the closed-door Ministerial Meetings). In order to ensure equitable representation of civil society voices, CSOs organised themselves through the regional fora and the fora directors and coordinators. As such, the fora directors and coordinators liaised with interlocutors of the EU and UN, co-organizers of the BC for the first five iterations, before the BC to ensure representative participation of locally-led CSOs and INGOs at all stages of the organisation and in all Conference events. At the BC, either verbally or in writing if speaking slots did not allow, CSOs working in Syria and the region jointly advocated for the priority needs of affected populations and for an increase in the (quality of) the funding for the response.

In 2023 Fora and coordination mechanisms in Syria and 3RP neighbouring countries decided to convene CSO actors that work on Syria and the region to review the collective response and adapt to the current realities. The first edition of the CSO Conference ‘Hear our Voices’ took place in March 2023, organised by the Norwegian Refugee Council with broad representation from locally-led organisations and INGOs operating in 3RP countries and all areas in Syria to facilitate stronger joint proactive agenda setting ahead of the 7th Brussels Conference in June 2023.

Based on the role and impact of the high-level outcomes of the Hear our Voices conference in 2023, the steering committee, comprised of representatives of different fora and coordination mechanisms in Syria and 3RP countries, has decided to escalate the conference to an annual standing initiative, providing platform for CSOs in these areas to deliver their voices on the needs and priorities of the Humanitarian Response in Syria and the neighbourhood. While in the first edition, the conference was designed to produce recommendations specifically for BC VII, the 2nd edition will expand the scope of the conference and integrate year-round advocacy planning to leverage the voices of Syrians and CSOs from neighbouring countries.

Mercy Corps will be leading the organisation of the 2nd edition of the conference in April 2024, working with a steering committee consisting of representatives from the different Syria hubs and fora as well as neighbouring countries.

The conference has 4 thematic areas determined by the steering committee:

  • Early Recovery and Resilience, and Internal Displacement in Syria
  • Integration of Refugees and the Nexus
  • Return of Refugees to Syria
  • Localisation of Humanitarian Action in Practice

Objectives

The main objectives of the HoV conference 2nd edition are to:

  • Bring together Syrians working in Syria and neighbouring countries, as well as other representatives of INGOs and locally-led CSOs working in Syria and the region and of the Syrian diaspora, to discuss priorities for funding, programme and policy interventions;
  • Discuss main findings and recommendations of the HoV Conference with key stakeholders including donors, UN, and Brussels Conference organisers;
  • Produce outputs that are supported by Conference participants and that can be used for policy engagement and elevating CSO voices at international arenas including but not limited to the 8th iteration of the Brussels Conference in 2024.
  • Revise outputs of the 1st edition of the conference and identify opportunities for follow up discussions during the 2nd edition

The consultant will organise the CSO conference, including by leading on expanding on the concept and agenda, drafting conference documents and advocacy plan, managing invitations and registration, coordinating the logistics of visa and flights, coordinating the set-up of break-out sessions and plenary panels, and drafting the final workshop outcome documents.

Deliverables:

The consultant is expected to work on and successfully complete the following deliverables:

Inception report (3 days):

  • Draft inception report including a detailed work plan, timeline and agenda. With a round of review from the HoV Conference Steering Committee.

Coordinate HoV Conference (25 days):

  • Lead on the coordination of the HoV Conference and expanding on the concept and agenda.
  • Expanding on the concept and agenda
  • Liaising with the Steering Committee, and leading on participants selection, invitations, registration, panel contributions, organisation of break-out sessions.
  • Along with the lead agency team, manage conference logistics including facilitation of travel and visa processes.

Draft HoV Conference outcome documents (12 days):

  • Compose a final report based on the thematic priorities and collective inter-agency outcomes and priorities.
  • Compose a press statement at the end of the conference.
  • Draft talking points document to be used for advocacy across the 4 thematic areas.
  • Develop a year round advocacy plan utilising the outputs of the conference and identifying, with the support of the steering committee, key opportunities to utilise outcomes by the steering committee and SIRF PAWG.

Duration & Deliverables Deadline

February 2024 to April 2024, for a total of 40 days. The conference will take place on the week of April 14, 2024.

All deliverables need to be finalised according to the following timeline:

  • Inception Report – February 28, 2024
  • Press Statement – To be released the day after HoV conference
  • Outcome report including all recommendations from the 2nd edition of HoV – April 30, 2024
  • Year round advocacy plan – May 15, 2024

Location of the consultancy

The consultant will be preferably based in Amman, while a home-based consultancy outside of Amman will also be considered with at least 1 travel to Amman for between 1 and 2 weeks and maximum 2 travels.

Key Stakeholders:

Reports to: Syria Policy and Advocacy Manager

The consultant will work with: 1) the Syria Policy and Advocacy Manager (main focal point), 2) the conference steering committee, 3) other relevant departments within Mercy Corps, and 4) CSO and NGO representatives.

Travel

The consultant is expected to travel to the region for this consultancy for the HoV conference (April 2024). Financial proposals need to budget for flight, accommodation, and airport transfer costs in the region, if not based in Amman. The costs above will be covered by the consultant themself.

Language

The deliverables will be submitted in English.

Qualifications:

  • 5-10 years of experience in a technically relevant field;
  • Master’s degree in international relations, development, political science and/or economics or similar;
  • Minimum 3 years’ proven experience in conducting similar assignments including organizing conferences, workshops and, advocacy campaigns;
  • Demonstrable experience related to humanitarian work, and strong understanding of humanitarian context with preference for previous experience within the Syrian crisis context and the Middle East Region;
  • Strong analytical and coordination skills;
  • Excellent writing skills, with experience in drafting policy and advocacy documents, presenting complex information in a simple and accessible manner;
  • Experience working with a small team to deliver quality outputs within shorter timeframes;
  • Fluency in written and spoken English, Knowledge of Arabic is an asset.

How to Apply

Interested candidates should send their resume, a letter outlining their relevant experience, proposed plan, and a financial plan including daily fee and any travel expenses. Applications will be reviewed on rolling basis.

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives. We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.

Equal Employment Opportunity

We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.

Safeguarding & Ethics

Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our stakeholders and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and MC’s policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.

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