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Terms of Reference


For A Special Study on Gender Norms Transformation for the Changing the River’s Flow for Young People Project in Zimbabwe February 2017

  1. 1.   Background and Context


1.1      Overview of the Changing the Rivers Flow for Young People

Zimbabwe is a mainly patriarchal society in which boys and girls are taught from early childhood to internalize societal messages about how males and females are expected to behave, who makes decisions, and where power dynamics lie. These behaviors have contributed to reinforcing unequal gender roles and responsibilities that can culminate into behaviors that promote risk to HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases. Such norms among young men and boys include early sexual activity, multiple sex partners and sexual dominance that increase vulnerability to contracting and spreading HIV. Despite the growing understanding that changing gender transformation, including shifting gender power dynamics and norms, is critical to realizing sexual reproductive health including HIV and GBV prevention, very few interventions have attempted to effectively address these norms in a sustainable and large scale fashion. Numerous interventions have focused mainly on adult women, with little attention paid to men - let alone young men and women, adolescent girls and boys. Leaving young men and boys at the periphery of interventions promoting gender equitable attitudes and behaviors has slowed down progress in achieving gender equality which is important for addressing HIV and GBV in a sustained manner.


To address some of these gender related challenges, SAfAIDS in partnership with Sonke Gender Justice) is implementing a 2 year (July 2015 – June 2017) gender-transformative project; Changing the River’s Flow- A Gender Transformative Program for Young People (CTRF 4 YP) project. The project being implemented in 4 districts namely Chiredzi, Hwange, Nyanga and Seke, targets young people aged 10-24 years, men and women aged 25 years and above and also community leaders. The project capacitates parents and leaders to transform harmful gender practices that promote inequitable gender norms that have a host of harmful consequences for girls and boys during childhood, adolescence and beyond, including poor sexual and reproductive health (SRHR) outcomes, violence and school dropout. 


Goal and Specific Objectives of the CTRF 4YP Project:

The CTRF 4YP main goal is to advance gender transformative work to reduce; HIV, GBV, teen pregnancies and barriers to access to sexual and reproductive health rights among boys and girls (10-24 years) in Zimbabwe by 2017. The proposed action seeks to achieve the following 5 specific objectives:


Objective 1: Strengthened capacity of SAfAIDS and its 4 local partners by Sonke on gender norms transformation (including work on engaging men and boys) theory, programme implementation, monitoring and evaluation.

Objective 2: Strengthened capacity of 720 young people (10-24years), both females and males, in and out of schools (24 schools in 6 per district) to practice equitable gender norms, practices and attitudes that reduce HIV and GBV, and impact positively on their SRHR outcomes, in Zimbabwe by 2017

Objective 3: Strengthened capacity of 300 community leaders (including religious and traditional leaders) and 200 parents to reduce harmful cultural and religious practices that promote inequitable gender norms, risk for HIV and GBV among young people, both females and males, in Zimbabwe by 2017

Objective 4: Undertake policy advocacy and provide technical input into national policy review and development processes.

Objective 5: Evidence generated, to promote innovation and learning on gender transformation to address HIV, GBV prevention among young people (females and males), in Zimbabwe by 2017


1.2      Background of the Study

This is a special study undertaken by both SAfAIDS to assess gender norms transformation issues that are linked to the CTRF4YP interventions scope to ultimately; 1) determine the relevance for scale up and 2) inform design of similar future gender transformation projects. Informed by the International Men and Gender Equality Survey (IMAGES), this proposed study will focus on determining 1) attitudes and behaviours on gender norms by young people and adults using the GEM Scale Tool; 2) barriers hindering gender transformations; 3) existing harmful gender practices and negative gender norms and their influencing factors; and 4) relationships between parents/guardians and their children. IMAGES is one of the most comprehensive survey instruments developed on this topic and has sought to incorporate the most recent survey instruments on gender, quality of life, childhood antecedents of violence, gender-based violence, family gender dynamics, and fatherhood.


  1. 2.   Purpose and Objectives of the Study

2.1      Purpose of the Study 

This a formative study targeting young people (10-24 years) and adults aged 25-60 years in order to better understand their attitudes, the barriers towards gender norms transformation and ways to better engage these groups when addressing identified negative gender norms and harmful practices. The study findings will be used to assess the need for and feasibility of expanding the CTR4YP to other districts in Zimbabwe. The knowledge generated will also inform further local and national advocacy work related to the gender transformation.

Study Objectives

The primary study objectives are to determine:

  • attitudes and behaviours on gender norms among young people and adults in the targeted communities
  • factors that influence existing negative gender norms and harmful gender practices among young people and adults including barriers that hinder gender norms transformation
  • Sexual behaviours and GBV experiences and their linkages to gender norms among young people
  • family gender dynamics and relationships between parents/guardians and their children
  • What are the prevailing gender inequality norms and practices in these communities?
  • How do specific gender inequitable norms and practices influence HIV, gender based violence and positive SRHR?
  • What are the key constraints to positive SRHR?
  • What are the barriers of gender transformation in the targeted communities?
  • What proportion of young people (15-24 years) have experienced gender based violence?

Key Study Questions

The following research questions will guide the study:


3.   Proposed Methodology

3.1 Study Design

The study MUST be an explorative cross-sectional with qualitative and quantitative data being collected and analysed. In this design, participants will be sampled and results analyzed only at the time of the assessment. The consultant should employ a combination of both probability and non-probability sampling designs to arrive at the sample. The consultant is expected to adopt a mixed method approach that embraces both qualitative and quantitative especially participatory data collection methodologies to ensure holistic and comprehensive examination of all critical aspects that address the purpose and objectives of the study. A quantitative survey tool adopted from the IMAGES survey tool will be administered. The study will target traditional leaders, adult men and women aged 25-60 years, adolescent boys and girls (15 -24 years) and District level stakeholders) in Chiredzi and Hwange Districts. The final study methodology will be agreed between the consultant, SAfAIDS and Sonke Gender Justice.


3.2 Deliverables

The following are the key deliverables for this assignment;

  1. Technical proposal detailing methodology, data collection matrix, data analysis plan, research team, work-plan and proposed budget by the 10 February 2017;
  2. Inception report with specific data collection methods, sample size, costed work-plan & exact timelines and data collection tool by 17 February 2017
  3. Data collection completed by 3 March 2017
  4. Draft report by 17 March 2017
  5. Final report by 23 March 2017

The exercise should be completed within 30 days from the date of contract signing.

4     Competencies & Experience Required

SAfAIDS is seeking to appoint a researcher/research agency with the following competencies and experience:

  • Research expertise evidenced by previous research projects
  • ·Expertise and experience in mixed methods: collecting and analysing quantitative and qualitative data
  • ·In-depth knowledge of gender equality and women’s empowerment.
  • · Experience in gender transformative approaches & programming
  • Strong knowledge of HIV, GBV, SRHR and youth development
  • ·A strong team leadership and management track record, as well as interpersonal and communication skills
  • ·Good report writing and presentation skills and the ability to express concisely and clearly ideas and concepts
  • In-depth knowledge of country dynamics and experience of working in Zimbabwe on gender related issues
  • ·Fluency in English is mandatory; basic knowledge of local languages is desirable.


5     How to Apply 

Applicants with the experience, skills and expertise for this assignment should submit a technical proposal to or not later than 10 February 2017. The technical proposal should detail the following:

  • Understanding of the ToR
  • A capacity statement including demonstrated ability to handle the assignment
  • A detailed plan of conducting the exercise, with clear description of the methodology and sampling procedure
  • Budget breakdown detailing consultancy and data collection costs
  • Matrix detailing data collection methodology and tools
  • A list of three recent organizations where similar services of the consultant have been utilized including contact details and title of assignment.




Call for Proposal to Conduct a Special Study on Gender Equality and Gender Norms Transformation in Zimabwe.pdf140.89 KB