Community Engagement and Accountability (CEA) Coordinator: Sudan COVID-19 Response

Closing date

Are you passionate about community participation and accountability towards disaster-affected people using ground-up, creative two-way Communication and Community Engagement approaches? This is a superb opportunity to support the COVID-19 response and help facilitate more sustainable ways of working on community engagement and accountability response-wide in Sudan. To be successful you will already be based in Sudan, a skilled facilitator and with demonstrated experience of working independently.

Deadline for applications: 31 May 2020

The Communicating with Disaster Affected Communities Network (CDAC) is seeking a consultant to support more systematic Community Engagement and Accountability in the Sudan COVID-19 response, employing interlinkages with the wider humanitarian response. At the end of the 6-months consultancy, through the facilitation of the Coordinator, a pathway to a longer-term collective Community Engagement and Accountability (CEA) approach will have been determined that has a broader focus on integrating the participation, feedback and perceptions of people into each phase of the humanitarian programme cycle, connected to the Inter-Sectoral Coordination Group (ISCG). See Annex 1 below for more background information.

Timeframe: 01 June 2020 – 30 November 2020

Home-based: Khartoum. There will be no international travel associated with this consultancy.

Reports to: OCHA Sudan office (TBC) with international CEA Advisory technical support provided by the CDAC Secretariat

Engages with: The COVID-19 Working Group, CEA partners, clusters/sectors, ISCG, HCT, UNCT, UNOPS, donors, and national, regional and global stakeholders, including government partners. Collaborating closely with the Protection Cluster, PSEA Network and gender and inclusion focal points.

Supported by: The Coordinator will be supported by a CDAC Network International CEA Advisor who will guide remotely.

1. Context

1.1. COVID-19

The first COVID-19 case in Sudan was confirmed on 13 March. As of 16 May 2020, there are 2,591 people confirmed to have COVID-19 Sudan, including 105 fatalities. COVID-19 has now spread to all of Sudan's 18 states. The majority of people with confirmed COVID-19 live in Khartoum State.[1]

The Transitional Government declared a state of emergency in March 2020 to combat the virus, shutting schools and universities, suspending domestic and international flights and almost totally closing its borders. The lockdown was extended in May.

1.2. Wider humanitarian situation

In 2020, before the COVID-19 outbreak, about 9.3 million people across Sudan required humanitarian support and nearly 2 million people remain internally displaced.[2] Parts of the country continue to face natural disasters including cyclical flooding, drought, and desertification. In addition, acute and chronic food insecurity continues to threaten people’s lives and livelihoods, and is mainly driven by prolonged conflict, environmental deterioration, natural disasters such as drought and floods and more recently the economic crisis.[3]

In May 2020, FAO estimates that the combined adverse impacts of the Covid-19 are being witnessed in all four-core dimensions of food security: availability, access, utilization and stability. Desert locust continues to pose an unprecedented threat to food security and livelihoods in the region.[4]

1.3. Status of response-wide Communication, Community Engagement & Accountability

The Sudan 2020 Humanitarian Response Plan, has committed to focusing on the establishment of a collective accountability approach that has a broader focus on integrating the participation, feedback and perceptions of people into each phase of the programme cycle. And to support this approach, a working group is to be established as part of the Inter-Sectoral Coordination Group (ISCG). It is expected that the working group ‘will map and continue to monitor mechanisms and programming already in place; and champion effective practices and mechanisms for Accountability towards Affected Populations (AAP) that would work across the humanitarian system. Progress will also be monitored at the sector level and shared for inter-sector discussion. The overall goal is to ensure accountable overall implementation that is coordinated and informed by community participation and feedback systems and is monitored and adjusted as needed. This, in turn will allow for a more flexible humanitarian response that can course-correct’.[5]

In 2019, the PSEA Network conducted a mapping to assess partners’ efforts against six core areas of policy, coordination, prevention, advocacy, complaints, and investigation while the 2020 HRP notes that UNOPS in Sudan is leading an inter-agency task force towards the establishment of a hotline system that would connect people to government social safety net services, the proposal for which is just being finalized. It is expected that humanitarians will closely engage with this task force to ensure such a system can align with humanitarian needs and feedback mechanisms.[6]

In May 2020, the Humanitarian and UN Country Teams launched a COVID-19 Country Preparedness and Response Plan (CPRP) to support the Government of Sudan’s efforts in preparing and responding to the pandemic. The plan notes that ‘under the overall guidance of WHO, the UN and partners have set up a time-bound COVID-19 coordination mechanism - the Strategic Coordination Group - chaired by the RC/HC comprised of WHO, UNICEF, OCHA, WFP, UNDP, UNHCR and UNFPA. This strategic group is supported by the COVID-19 Working Group at operational and technical level’. It further outlines the working group’s supporting Pillar leads, as follows:

Country Level Coordination, Planning & Monitoring: WHO, OCHA

Risk Communication & Community Engagement: UNICEF, UNFPA, UNHCR, UNDP

Surveillance, Rapid Response Teams & Case Investigation: WHO, UNHCR, UNICEF

Points of Entry: WHO, IOM

National Laboratories: WHO

Infection Prevention & Control: UNICEF, WHO, UNFPA

Case Management: WHO, UNFPA, UNICEF

Operational Support & Logistics: WFP, UNICEF, UNDP

The CPRP further states that ‘at state level, WHO will take the lead in states where they have presence and in states with limited WHO presence, another partner organization will take the lead. National pillar focal points will work closely with the state focal points, providing the necessary technical guidance. In the states where there is an Area Humanitarian Country Team (A-HCT) or an established humanitarian coordination architecture, Covid-19 focal points will work under these mechanisms. The aim is to work through existing coordination mechanisms to the extent possible.’

2. Purpose of this consultancy

The CDAC Community Engagement and Accountability Coordinator, working closely in-country with OCHA and WHO and other UN and NGO agencies in-country on the COVID response, will employ a collective approach for more systematic CEA in the overall Sudan humanitarian response, setting a framework for a longer-term CEA coordination mechanism.

This consultancy is part of the H2H Global COVID-19 Humanitarian Support Package which is supporting global yet local efforts to fight the pandemic. The package is especially focused on countries and/or regions with weaker health systems.

3. Responsibilities


➔ Working closely with OCHA Sudan and WHO, support existing COVID-19 coordination mechanisms ensuring linkages with the wider humanitarian response

➔ Establish close working relationships with Risk Communication and Community Engagement designated leads and partners UNICEF, UNFPA, UNHCR, UNDP and IFRC.

Advisory and technical support:[7]

Conduct a rapid desk review of CEA documentation relating to the response, building on the work of the Risk Communication and Community Engagement Pillar and wider AAP approaches. **

Identify and address CEA gaps through the established mechanisms and if needed, development of new ones.**

Provide immediate technical support to the COVID-19 Working Group in Communicating with Communities to prevent the spread and transmission of the COVID-19 coronavirus.

Provide CEA technical support as advised by the WG membership and the WG agreed Action Plan.

Identify community preferences for feedback channels and map feedback channels drawing from existing work by UNOPS, the Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (PSEA) Network, among others.**

➔ If not already in place, facilitate agreement at the WG level on the collection and analysis of community feedback through multiple feedback channels.

➔ Facilitate agreement on a system for influencing decision-making at the HCT level based on aggregated feedback from communities.

Facilitation: **

Initiate, convene, facilitate and coordinate discussion on a longer-term CEA collective approach that cuts across the entire Sudan humanitarian response. Working with OCHA, and the support of an International CEA Advisor and CDAC members locally, coordinate with government partners (where feasible), the Humanitarian Country Team (HCT), local civil society, and other relevant humanitarian and non-humanitarian actors (e.g. mobile network operators, media development agencies, etc.), ensuring discussions are participatory, results oriented and well-documented.

Actively promote national actors’ membership in the WG – where possible helping broker partnerships with international actors.

Facilitate the roll out of WG agreed collective actions.

Information management:

➔ Working with a designated Information Management Officer and the International CEA Advisor, support the functioning of the working group by ensuring that partners are familiar with and use a 4W reporting format for activities, that the WG mailing list and contact details are regularly updated and that the shared drive is organised well, populated with key documents, assessments, evaluations and WG outputs, to build a common knowledge base among partners.

In coordination with the IM Officer and International CEA Advisor, provide advice and support to enable a predictable approach to how WG partners are collecting, protecting, analysing data.

Capacity strengthening:

Working with the International CEA Advisor:

Assess the priority skills gaps and learning needs relating to AAP/CCE within partner organisations.

Initiate the development of a capacity-building strategy to build the knowledge of, and commitment to AAP/CCE collective approaches within the response.

Facilitate opportunities to build capacity of partners in AAP/CCE with emphasis on participatory approaches and tools, including community dialogues, mediating group meetings, co-creation of key messages, and whenever possible developing practical exercises at community level.**

Develop materials to provide a community engagement induction briefing for new AAP/CCE WG members**


➔ Produce monthly updates, summarising progress, achievements and identifying gaps and challenges

➔ Provide input into OCHA Situation Reports and other information products where relevant.


➔ Eight to ten years’ experience in the humanitarian and/or development sectors, with significant experience in facilitating and coordinating multi-stakeholder groups;

➔ Significant expertise in engaging with government, CSOs, Red Cross/Crescent, UN agencies, private sector at senior leadership level;

➔ Significant expertise in Communication and Community Engagement and/or a Accountability to Affected Population;

➔ Knowledge of working in a conflict context and strong conflict sensitivity awareness and related skills

➔ Driven and ability to work effectively with minimal direct supervision

➔ Experience in building consensus and brokering partnerships;

➔ Knowledge of the humanitarian system;

➔ A good understanding of information management (including data flows, protection and analysis), as well as qualitative and quantitative data collection methods;

➔ Fluent in written and spoken English

➔ Ability to communicate well in Arabic strongly desirable;

➔ Ability to work collaboratively as part of a team in a challenging and highly fluid environment, flexibility and the ability to handle constant change;

➔ Ability to start work in early June 2020;

➔ Experience facilitating participatory approaches;

➔ Proven ability to live and work in challenging physical conditions;

➔ Knowledge of local mother tongue languages desirable.


[2] OCHA (2020), Humanitarian Response Plan, Sudan

[3] Ibid


[5] Sudan HPR, pg. 26

[6] Ibid

[7] Working closely with the OCHA team and the CDAC international CEA Advisor (these actions will need to be adapted locally)

Annex 1


It is necessary to include the people affected by humanitarian crises and their communities in decision-making to be certain that the humanitarian response is relevant, timely, effective and efficient. Engaging the communities and facilitating their participation enables people, vulnerable to and affected by crises, to lead and shape positive, sustainable change in their own lives, communities and society. To do so, it is important to provide accessible information, ensure that an effective process for participation and feedback is in place and that design and management decisions are responsive to the views of affected communities and people. Donors and aid organisations should work to ensure that the voices of the most vulnerable groups considering gender, age, ethnicity, language and special needs are heard and acted upon. This will create an environment of greater trust, transparency and accountability (IASC).

The Grand Bargain is an agreement between more than 30 of the biggest donors and aid providers, including a participation revolution: to properly include people receiving aid in the decisions that affect their lives. The Core Humanitarian Standard on Quality and Accountability sets out nine commitments, including that communities and people affected by crisis know their rights and entitlements, have access to information and participate in decisions that affect them, and can raise complaints that will be addressed.

The IASC Commitments on Accountability to Affected People and Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abusesimilarly commit responders to inform, as well as solicit, hear and act upon the voices, priorities and feedback of affected people (including sexual exploitation and abuse-related complaints) and ensure people can play an active role in decision-making.

CDAC Network is the global alliance of more than 30 of the world’s biggest humanitarian and media development organisations – including UN agencies, the Red Cross/Red Crescent Movement, NGOs, media and communications organisations – committed to putting the power in humanitarian action back in the hands of communities.

We believe that, when communities have the information and the resources to make their own decisions, they have the capacity to find solutions to even the most challenging problems. We work to enable them to do this.

How to apply

Invitation to submit applications

We invite interested individuals to submit:

a) A proposal application (max 2 pages): the proposal should address the required experience, key areas of responsibility, capacity, competence, and other relevant information on the ability to successfully deliver.

b) The financial section of the proposal should include a monthly fee rate in GBP, based on fulltime consultancy work.

c) CV

d) Names and contacts of three referees.

Send applications to the following email address:

Deadline: 31 May 2020

Interviews: From 04 June 2020

Safeguarding: In CDAC we will not tolerate any form of misconduct, including sexual harassment, exploitation and abuse. We have a code of conduct in place, and are committed to creating a culture of integrity in the organisation where misconduct is not tolerated, situations of abuse are quickly investigated and perpetrators are dealt with effectively.