International Consultant – Smallholder Women Farmer Cooperatives

UN Women - In July 2010, the United nations General Assembly created UN Women, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women. The creation of UN Women came about as part of the UN reform agenda, bringing together resources and mandates for greater impact. It merges and builds on the important work of four previously distinct parts of the UN system (DAW, OSAGI, INSTRAW and UNIFEM), which focused exclusively on gender equality and women's empowerment.We are recruiting to fill the position below:

Job Title: International Consultant for Training of selected Smallholder Women Farmer Cooperatives in Ebonyi State, Federal Republic of Nigeria

Location: Abakaliki, Ebonyi

Type of Contract: Individual Contract

Post Level: International Consultant

Languages Required: English 

Duration of Initial Contract: 20 Working days

Background of the Consultancy

  • UN Women is grounded in the vision of equality as enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, it works for the elimination of discrimination against women and girls; the empowerment of women; and the achievement of equality between women and men as partners and beneficiaries of development, human rights, humanitarian action and peace and security.
  • UN Women is implementing a two-year project on Promoting Women’s Economic Empowerment through Climate-Resilient Agribusiness in Nigeria.
  • The project seeks to contribute to reduction in food insecurity and promote employment creation and increased incomes and economic security for women engaged in the rice value chain in Ebonyi State, and shea value chain in Niger State by working to achieve this key objective:
  • To reduce the constraints faced by women farmers and increase women farmers’ agricultural productivity and economic empowerment through Climate Smart Agricultural Initiatives.
  • The project is designed to close the gender gap in ownership and control of productive resources by strengthening women’s agricultural productivity and access to markets in the rice and shea value chains.
  • The project aims to achieve the following results and target women farmers to benefit from the following interventions:
  • Increased agricultural productivity through climate smart agricultural practices by women farmers increased
  • Expanded access to diverse high value markets by women through value chain development
  • Strengthened capacities and trade opportunities by women through ICT platforms
  • Improved institutional coordination and knowledge management through research for development

  • Women dominate the agriculture sector in Nigeria, where they work as farmers, food processors, and traders, but they face key structural barriers that limit their access to land, information, finance, infrastructure, technologies, extension services and markets. Women still have less access than men to resources and climate change adaptation mechanisms. Closing the gender gap in access to resources and climate smart agricultural and agri-business technologies through informed investments that remove these barriers represents a great opportunity for rural women’s economic empowerment, overall economic development, and societal resilience to climate change in Nigeria.
  • Specific to the rice value-chain in Ebonyi State, women are unable the derive the full value of their efforts because they lack the improved inputs and skills, technology and financial resources to increase their productivity and take advantage of the most financially rewarding stages of the chain, namely value-additive processing and marketing.
  • The assistance will involve increasing access for the cooperatives to improved rice post-harvest processing facilities to help them improve upon the grain qualities of the local rice and enhance the competitiveness of the locally produced rice against the imported rice.

Duties and Responsibilities

Purpose and Objectives of the Consultancy for the Training of Existing Women Cooperative Societies:

  • As part of the effort to strengthen the capacity of the targeted women cooperatives, UN Women and partners are seeking the services of a consultant to adapt ILO cooperative training tools and conduct a Training of Trainers (ToT) on cooperative governance and management including understanding of cooperatives, leadership and governance, cooperative marketing and business management, and financial literacy skills.
  • The ToT will benefit a total of 120 women farmers (with 10 persons selected from each of the targeted beneficiary groups) and selected relevant staff and extension workers of the State Ministry of Women Affairs and Agriculture. 
  • Following the conduct of the ToT, the UN Women consultant will partner with trained Ministries staff and the implementing partner to facilitate the step-down training which will occur in three Project Local Government Areas (LGAs) of Ebonyi State including Ohoazara, Ezza South and Ebonyi to leverage on partnership with government and enhance visibility of the activities. The step-down training will be monitored by the Ministries of Women Affairs and Agriculture and UN Women.

Description of Functions:

  • Review the cooperative assessment report and develop the training program to address the identified challenges for women cooperatives in Ebonyi State.
  • Develop an indicative concept of a Training of Trainers for women cooperatives and women small holder farmers including timelines for the different tasks involved in the consultancy.
  • Review and adapt ILO simplified cooperative training tools and other relevant global gender sensitive tools to produce training materials including presentations and handouts etc.
  • Work with the project stakeholders in Abakaliki to review the training modules and certify that they are appropriate for the targeted beneficiaries.
  • Deliver ToT training on cooperative governance and management including understanding of cooperatives, leadership, cooperative marketing and business management, and financial literacy skills to 120 women farmers.
  • Produce a report of the consultancy including training processes, results and recommendations.

Deliverables and Timeframe:

The final expected output from the consultant is a workshop and training materials. Specifically, the consultant is expected at the end of the contractual period to derive the following output:

  • Develop a detailed training concept covering intended adapted tools to conduct the ToT on cooperative governance and management and to address the identified challenges
  • Produce simplified and tailored gender sensitive training materials adapted from ILO cooperatives tools and other relevant global tools produced.
  • Conduct a one week (ToT) for 120 persons including members of targeted women cooperatives and selected project beneficiaries conducted.
  • Detailed report on Cooperative governance and management TOT workshop and certification of participants submitted to the satisfaction of UN Women and partners.

Hiring Agency and Specific Consultancy Requirement:

  • UN Women Nigeria is looking to hire one consultant with expertise in cooperative governance and management. Experience working in Nigeria in general and the South-East will be desirable

Expected Timeline:

  • The consultancy fee for this assignment is for 20 working Days. The assignment is expected to be completed over a period of one month.